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Three new Star Wars films on the way

Three new Star Wars movies are in the making, studio executives announced Friday, including the first film in the cinematic universe to be directed by a woman. Pakistan-born Oscar-winner Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy is leaping from the Marvel universe to the Star Wars galaxy to direct a new film set 15 years after the end of the last movie.

She will direct British actor Daisy Ridley as she returns to the role of Rey, the heroine of the last trilogy, which wound up in 2019 to mixed reviews. The new film will follow Rey’s efforts to revive the Jedi order. Obaid-Chinoy, who has two Oscars for documentaries denouncing violence against women, said she was “drawn to the hero’s journey” in the Star Wars universe. “I spent the better part of my lifetime meeting real heroes who are overcoming oppressive regimes and battling impossible odds and I think that’s the heart of Star Wars,” she said.

Obaid-Chinoy directed last year’s Ms. Marvel television series featuring a Muslim superhero. Kathleen Kennedy, president of Lucasfilm, the studio bought by Disney in 2012, said each of the three films would cover different periods in the Star Wars narrative. And each will have a different director. James Mangold, himself a two-time Oscar nominee, will helm another of the films, fresh from directing the latest in the Indiana Jones series, which is due for release later this year.

His film will look at the origins of the Jedi order, thousands of years before the original storyline. And the third film will be directed by Dave Filoni, an old hand in the Stars Wars universe, having produced several television series, including the wildly successful The Mandalorian, now in its third season. Fans at the convention also got a first view of US actress Rosario Dawson in the role of Ahsoka, a female Jedi warrior who first appeared in an animated series.

The character has been such as hit with the Star Wars fanbase that she has graduated to a live-action television series, due out in August. But fans will have to wait until 2025 for the first of the three films to be released.–AFP

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