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Taika Waititi to direct and co-write new Star Wars movie

It’s official: The next Star Wars movie will be from the director of Thor: Ragnarok.

Taika Waititi will direct and co-write a new film from the galaxy far, far away, Lucasfilm announced Monday.

It won’t be Waititi’s first time in the Star Wars universe — he directed the season 1 finale of The Mandalorian and voices the droid character IG-11 on the series. Reports first surfaced in January that he had been approached about making a Star Wars film.

The New Zealand filmmaker won an Oscar earlier this year for the screenplay of Jojo Rabbit, which he also directed. He is joined on the project by co-writer Krysty Wilson-Cairns (1917).

Lucasfilm also finally confirming that Leslye Headland (Russian Doll) is developing a new untitled Star Wars series for Disney+. The drama series will reportedly be the network’s first for a female lead character.

The project joins two forthcoming Star Wars dramas with male leads: an Obi-Wan Kenobi series with Ewan McGregor reprising his role from the prequel films and a Rogue One prequel with Diego Luna reprising his role as Rebel spy Cassian Andor. Of the two, the Rogue One prequel might end up landing first, as the Obi-Wan series recently swapped writers, with John Wick: Chapter 3 executive producer Joby Harold taking over. And of course, there is season 2 of The Mandalorian, starring Pedro Pascal, which is coming to Disney+ in October.

Figuring out who is making the next Star Wars film after December’s The Rise of Skywalker has taken some doing. Originally, Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss were announced as making the next film, but the Emmy-winning duo stepped away from the project to focus on fulfilling their multi-year Netflix deal. Marvel chief Kevin Feige was also announced as developing a title; it’s unclear if he’ll have a role on the film coming from Waititi, who he worked with on Thor: Ragnarok.

Both announcements were made on the unofficial Star Wars Day of May the Fourth, which also sees the series finale of Star Wars: The Clone Wars landing on Disney+ and the premiere of Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian docuseries also on Disney+.

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