Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker will hit theaters December 20 and be a smash hit at the box office, but when is it coming to Disney+?
While a release date hasn’t officially been set for Episode IX to stream, it’s likely the epic conclusion to three movie trilogies will arrive sometime around July 21, 2020.
This educated guess is primarily based on the prior Skywalker saga film, The Last Jedi. The controversial Rian Johnson picture premiered on Netflix on June 26, 2018. Its theatrical release date was December 15, 2017.
That’s roughly six and a half months out from when it dropped. But let’s err closer to the seven-month mark for The Rise of Skywalker. Depending on how close it is to breaking all-time box-office records, there may be re-releases after its initial run, or other special theatrical events.
How will it all end?
J.J. Abrams co-wrote and directed Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens. After handing off to Johnson, he’s returned to finish the story he started.
But Abrams isn’t just wrapping up this sequel trilogy. He and fellow screenwriter Chris Terrio are tying together the prequel trilogy, the O.G. and this one.
Trying to unify nine films in one without forcing anything seems near impossible. Plus, Abrams’ whole creative calling card is the “mystery box.” In other words, he likes to leave questions unanswered. That won’t be an option in Episode IX.
One big question mark is Sheev Palpatine, who’s returning in some fashion. Did the Emperor really not perish at the end of Return of the Jedi?
Also: Who is Rey, exactly? Will Kylo Ren be redeemed and go by his given name, Ben Solo? Does The Rise of Skywalker mean Luke will be resurrected? Will we learn anything more about the fallen Supreme Leader Snoke?
This is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the numerous questions fans have entering Episode IX.
What’s the future of Star Wars?
While this marks the end of the Skywalker saga, there will be more Star Wars content. The property’s first live-action TV show, The Mandalorian, debuts its pilot episode when Disney+ goes live.
Two other TV series are also in development. One centers around Rogue One character Cassian Andor, and the other has Ewan McGregor’s Obi-Wan Kenobi starring.
Game of Thrones creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss recently left a planned trilogy of Star Wars movies to focus on their Netflix projects. Johnson is supposed to have his own new trilogy, too, but it’s unclear when that’s going to happen.
There’s reason for optimism regarding Star Wars’ TV potential. The galaxy far, far away still has tons of upside for epic storytelling.
For now, let’s enjoy whatever Abrams and Co. have cooked up for the grand Episode IX finale.
Enjoy the final trailer for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker below.