ABC is teasing that a Star Wars TV show could bring the franchise (back) to the small screen
“For an entire generation, people have experienced ‘Star Wars’ the only way it has been possible: on a TV screen,” begins the narration on the trailer for the 1997 Star Wars Special Edition theatrical re-releases. “But if you’ve only seen it this way, you haven’t seen it at all!”
Nearly two decades later, things have certainly changed. We now have a theatrical Star Wars film planned for release every year for the foreseeable future and are being teased by the prospect that a new Star Wars TV show may now be in the works.
“[W]e have had conversations with [Lucasfilm] and will continue to have conversations with them,” ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey today tells EW. “I think it would be wonderful if we could find a way to extend that brand into our programming… It’s all a little bit hush-hush. That company exists under a big shroud of secrecy. If you feel Marvel’s secretive, [Lucasfilm] takes it to a whole other level … [Talks] are ongoing. We don’t have an official timeline yet.”
Of course, fans are well aware that we already have two different Star Wars TV series currently on the air. Disney XD‘s Star Wars Rebels is gearing up for its third season and the channel is also airing the first season of its non-canon LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures. Those join the concluded (but still-canon) animated Star Wars TV series The Clone Wars as well as the non-canon (now dubbed “Legends”) series Droids, Ewoks and an earlier Clone Wars microseries, created by Genndy Tartakovsky.
Although far from confirmed, the hope among fans is that this potential new Star Wars TV series might bring to the small screen some live-action adventures from a galaxy far, far away. After all, it has been revealed that plans for a massive live-action Star Wars TV series began after the prequel trilogy concluded in 2005 with former Lucasfilm producer Rick McCallum laying out the groundwork for a series he described as “‘Deadwood’ in space.”
“It’s so unlike anything you’ve ever associated with George before in relation to Star Wars,” McCallum told Den of Geek in 2012. “These aren’t for kids. I mean, we hope they’ll watch, but it’s not being targeted at 8-to-9 year old boys. The situation we have is that each episode – or if you put two hour long episodes together – is bigger than any film we’ve ever done. It’s on the ‘Avatar’ level and we’ll only have about $5-6 million we can spend on each episode.”
There are reportedly 50 scripted episodes for what was tentatively titled Star Wars: Underworld. As to whether or not those stories will ever see the light of day remains to be seen, although today’s comments from Dungey suggest that, at the very least, the pricetag of such an undertaking may be something that the network is willing to reexamine.
As it stands at the moment, however, the sole live-action Star Wars TV show remains 1978’s much derided Star Wars: Holiday Special. Although never officially released beyond its initial airing on CBS nearly four decades ago, the Holiday Special does feature most of the Star Wars cast reprising their big screen roles. The Force Awakens‘ J.J. Abrams even told MTV that he considers the story to be part of the franchise canon.
What would you want to see from an ABC Star Wars TV series? Let us know in the comments below!