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New Details on Mysterious ‘Star Wars’ Series ‘The Acolyte’ Shared by Showrunner Leslye Headland

Leslye Headland

Star Wars fans were gifted with the June cover of Vanity Fair, and with it came a whole bunch of information for fans of the franchise. And one of the most exciting parts about the story was the information we got on Leslye Headland’s show Star Wars: The Acolyte.

The series has been a bit of a mystery for fans since its announcement. In the Vanity Fair piece, Headland herself (who is known for creating/directing/writing for the Netflix series Russian Doll, as well as writing/directing movies like Bachelorette and Sleeping With Other People) said that the show is a “mystery thriller set in a prosperous and seemingly peaceful era.” And it also seems to be a pretty open ara for Star Wars fans, with an exploration of the time prior to the Skywalker Saga.

Headland said, “A lot of those characters haven’t even been born yet. We’re taking a look at the political and personal and spiritual things that came up in a time period that we don’t know much about. My question when watching The Phantom Menace was always like, ‘Well, how did things get to this point?’ How did we get to a point where a Sith lord can infiltrate the Senate and none of the Jedi pick up on it? Like, what went wrong? What are the scenarios that led us to this moment?”

She went on to talk a bit about the Jedi at the time of her series and the Jedi uniforms and how they don’t particularly seem like the kind of people who would be fighting given they’re gold and white. “We actually use the term the Renaissance, or the Age of Enlightenment,” she said. “The Jedi uniforms are gold and white, and it’s almost like they would never get dirty. They would never be out and about,” Headland said. “The idea is that they could have these types of uniforms because that’s how little they’re getting into skirmishes.”

A new era of Star Wars

What’s so fascinating to me about shows like Star Wars: The Acolyte is that we’re getting to see a time before the Chosen One, before the Empire rises. We’re seeing what led to Palpatine’s power, and we’re seeing a time that we’ve only really heard tale of in the extended universe of Star Wars. That’s incredibly exciting to me.

I love Star Wars very much, and that includes stories that aren’t directly connected to the Skywalkers and their drama. (Don’t get me wrong. I love my messy family but a change of pace is nice, too.) Exploring the time before Anakin Skywalker with a series like The Acolyte is going to set in motion, I think, a new way of telling stories in the Star Wars universe. I trust Headland’s writing, and from this bit in the Vanity Fair piece, I now have a whole new look at the show and what to expect from it. And yes, I also want to know how we ended up where we were when Darth Maul rolled up.

(featured image: Rachel Luna/Getty Images)

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Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. A writer her whole life but professionally starting back in 2016 who loves all things movies, TV, and classic rock. Resident Spider-Man expert, official Leslie Knope, actually Yelena Belova. Wanda Maximoff has never done anything wrong in her life. Star Wars makes her very happy. New York writer with a passion for all things nerdy. Yes, she has a Pedro Pascal podcast. And also a Harrison Ford one.