Star Wars: The Acolyte has officially gone into production – and some big names have been added to its impressive cast.
Revealed in a press release, Lucasfilm has confirmed that filming has begun on the next major Star Wars television series. The Disney subsidiary also confirmed which actors will join lead star Amandla Stenberg (Bodies Bodies Bodies), who joined the project in December 2021.
Of the big names joining the cast of The Acolyte, Lee Jung-Jae (Squid Game Season 2), Carrie-Anne Moss (The Matrix Resurrections) and Dafne Keen (His Dark Materials) are the most notable. Jung-Jae was photographed alongside Stenberg listening to showrunner Leslye Headland in the first behind-the-scenes photo of the show’s production, which can be seen above (and in the tweet below):
Production has begun on ‘The Acolyte’, Lucasfilm’s upcoming Star Wars original series coming to @DisneyPlus. pic.twitter.com/g6apnGXSmrNovember 7, 2022
Here’s a quick rundown of the rest of the actors who have joined the cast of Acolyte:
There is no word on the identity of the characters of this acting contingent, including Stenberg. However, thanks to an article published on StarWars.com (opens in a new tab)we have some idea of what the story of the Acolyte entails.
“Acolyte is a mystery thriller that takes viewers into a galaxy of dark secrets and the emerging powers of the dark side in the final days of the High Republic era,” the article reads. “A former Padawan reunites with her Jedi Master to investigate a series of crimes, but the forces they face are more sinister than they expected.”
For those unfamiliar with the High Republic era, this is the period in the Star Wars universe when the Jedi Order was at its height. It is a historical epoch that has lasted for centuries, and this particular epoch ended around 82 BBY (before the Battle of Yavin) and preceded the events of Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. If you want to know more about the Star Wars timeline, you can read our guide to watching the Star Wars movies in order.
Headland (Russian Doll, Heathers) is the creator and executive producer of The Acolyte and will direct the pilot episode of the series. Lucasfilm CEO Kathleen Kennedy, as well as Simon Emanuel, Jeff F. King and James Micaleff are also executive producers on the Disney Plus series.
Acolyte has no release date, but is expected to arrive on Disney Plus in late 2023 or early 2024.
Analysis: Expanding the Star Wars Mythos
Acolyte has the potential to be one of the best Disney Plus shows. Well, at least from a Star Wars perspective.
how is it? Set in the era of the High Republic, it will explore an oft-overlooked period in the history of the epic sci-fi series where, as we explained earlier, the Jedi Order is at its peak.
Most of the Star Wars movies and TV shows, such as The Mandalorian, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Andor, were set in and around the three major movie trilogies. Acolyte will be a clear departure from that formula, opting instead to explore a period of history when the Sith weren’t at their strongest and the Jedi were known (not to mention beloved) throughout the galaxy.
The era of the High Republic has begun to emerge publicly in recent times. In 2018, Lucasfilm announced a new multi-media project, tentatively titled Luminous, which became a multifaceted series featuring The High Republic. Over the last two years, a slew of comics, novels, web series, and audiobooks have been released that explore this period in Star Wars history in greater detail.
The Acolyte, as well as Star Wars: Eclipse developed by Quantic Dream, will also bring The High Republic to their respective live-action and video game media, thus extending the reach of this era in the iconic Star Wars story. After decades of playing it safe and stacking projects around its legendary film franchise, Lucasfilm is finally taking a bold, bold step into the unknown with productions including Acolytes – and it’s going to be a much richer franchise.
For more Star Wars content, check out all the new Star Wars TV shows and movies. Alternatively, find out why we think it’s great news that Andor isn’t like your typical Star Wars TV series.