Disney has removed “Rogue Squadron,” the “Star Wars” film from director Patty Jenkins, from its release calendar. The move comes as little surprise since the tentpole, which was scheduled for Dec. 22, 2023, was taken off the studio’s production schedule in 2021.
The announcement is more-or-less pro forma, as the window for “Rogue Squadron” to start filming in time to complete the movie by next December has very nearly closed. The next big-screen story in the space opera saga had already been delayed in November 2021, reportedly due to scheduling conflicts with Jenkins.
As part of the scheduling change, Disney set release dates for several movies, including its “Snow White” remake, starring Rachel Zegler (March 22, 2024); “Inside Out 2,” a follow-up to the emotional Pixar picture (June 14, 2024); and “The Lion King” sequel “Mufasa,” from director Barry Jenkins (July 5, 2024).
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The studio also planted flags for Searchlight’s “Next Goal Wins,” an inspirational sports comedy from Taika Waititi (April 21, 2023); Disney Animation’s “Wish,” a movie that takes inspiration from the concept of wishing upon a star, (Nov. 22, 2023); and Pixar’s “Elio,” a science-fiction tale about an 11-year-old outsider who becomes the galactic ambassador of Earth (March 1, 2024).
Development plans for “Inside Out 2,” “Elio” and “Wish,” featuring Oscar-winner Ariana DeBose and the team behind Frozen,” were revealed over the weekend at D23 Expo, the company’s biennial pep rally for fans.
Meanwhile, the theme-park ride adaptation “Haunted Mansion” will open on Aug. 11, 2023, instead of its previous date of March 10, 2023, and an untitled Marvel movie has been pushed from Feb. 16, 2024, to its new home on Sept. 6, 2024.
“Rogue Squandron” was expected to be the first “Star Wars” movie to play in theaters since 2019’s “The Rise of Skywalker.” Disney and Lucasfilm are busy developing separate “Star Wars” features — one with Waititi, another with “The Last Jedi” filmmaker Rian Johnson and a third with Marvel chief Kevin Feige — but there’s been little-to-no information available about any of those endeavors, so it’s unclear which of those will be the first to hit theaters.
When Jenkins first announced the spinoff in 2020, she evoked the thrill of watching her late father, who served as a fighter pilot in the U.S. military, and referred to “Rogue Squadron as her desire to “one day making the greatest fighter pilot movie of all time.”