This September, a new series from the faraway galaxy is set to launch that will blow fans out of their cockpits. Star Wars: Visions is the first of its kind - a combination of Star Wars and anime. And going by the brand-new trailer, fans have every right to be excited for new adventures from the faraway galaxy.
Following the success of The Mandalorian and The Bad Batch, Star Wars: Visions will, in many ways, mark the beginning of a new wave of Star Wars TV shows, as it's set to arrive this September, with The Book of Boba Fett following closely behind in December, and a number of other shows set to start streaming next year. Check out the official new trailer below:
But where will the show fit in alongside all those upcoming new shows and movies, and into the wider Star Wars universe? In other words, is Star Wars: Visions canon? It's a question certainly worth asking, especially with so many new Star Wars shows and movies on the horizon, all of which are undoubtedly canon, whether they're animated or live-action.
The Book of Boba Fett will make a landing in his newly named ship (which, to no surprise, fans aren't pleased with) on Disney+ this year, while Ahsoka, Andor, Obi-Wan Kenobi, The Mandalorian Season 3, and The Bad Batch Season 2 will release throughout 2022. There are even two new movies on the table: Rogue Squadrons and an untitled Star Wars project with Taika Waititi at the helm.
So, does Star Wars: Visions have a place in the faraway galaxy? Well, of course - just not in the way you might think. It's fair to say that, ever since Disney acquired Lucasfilm in 2012, virtually everything Star Wars has been canon (even if fans are still hoping Disney will retcon the sequel trilogy), with all pre-merger material except for the original trilogy, prequel trilogy, and The Clone Wars, declared non-canon and dubbed Star Wars: Legends. But Star Wars: Visions is set to be unique in more ways than one.
The upcoming Japanese anime anthology series is being produced by Lucasfilm Animation and six Japanese animation studios: Kamikaze Douga, Twin Engine, Trigger, Kinema, Citrus, Production I.G., and Science SARY. And according to the teaser trailer we got a while ago, Disney and Lucasfilm have given the creators free reign to explore the faraway galaxy through their own 'visions'. Check out the special look trailer below to hear what some of the Lucasfilm producers, and the Star Wars: Visions directors, had to say:
But if there's any doubt about the show's non-canonicity, even after watching the special look trailer, executive producer James Waugh has also said the following: "We really wanted to give these creators a wide creative berth to explore all the imaginative potential of the Star Wars galaxy through the unique lens of anime. We realized we wanted these to be as authentic as possible to the studios and creators who are making them, made through their unique process, in a medium they're such experts at. So the idea was, this is their vision riffing off all the elements of the Star Wars galaxy that inspired them — hopefully, to make a really incredible anthology series, unlike anything we've seen before in the Star Wars galaxy."
So, Star Wars: Visions will not be following the established Star Wars canon, nor will it be expected to adhere to the timeline, so that the creators' imaginations are unburdened by the boundaries of the canon. That's not to say some of the stories won't call upon established lore or characters, though. In fact, we already know that some familiar faces will appear in the series, such as Boba Fett and Jabba the Hutt. But for the most part, we will be meeting original characters.
The fact it's non-canon also doesn't mean that the show won't try to 'acknowledge' the Star Wars timeline, either. "Lop and Ocho" is set between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, during the Empire's reign over the galaxy, "The Elder" takes place "sometime before" The Phantom Menace, while "The Twins" and "The Ninth Jedi" will take place after the events of The Rise of Skywalker - which is interesting, considering we're yet to see anything set beyond the final episode in the Skywalker saga (even if it is non-canon).
The show will consist of nine episodes, each of which will serve as an entirely separate entity to one another: "The Duel", "Lop and Ocho", "Tatooine Rhapsody", "The Twins", "The Elder", "The Village Bride", "Akakiri", "T0-B1" and "The Ninth Jedi" (some of these titles alone are enough to give us chills). Each episode will be a unique story told through the Star Wars lens, and together will span a variety of genres, all the while combining Star Wars with Japanese storytelling.
And even though the series isn't going to be canon, perhaps future Star Wars shows, whether animated or live-action, will, in turn, utilize characters from Star Wars: Visions. One who's already burning themselves into fans' minds is the female character Lop, of the Lepi variety - a sentient, rabbit-like humanoid species we've yet to see in any movies or shows. "I wanted to make a symbolic character and was looking for a non-human being," says "Lop and Ocho" director Yuki Igarashi.
Lop can be seen in the new trailer looking upon a lightsaber in awe, and also drifting through the sky using what looks like an umbrella – a little like Mary Poppins (you know, the magical nanny who could actually be a powerful Jedi herself, given her Force-like abilities). Lop is clearly the kind of character who has the potential to go on and become as popular as the likes of Ahsoka Tano, who was only introduced in 2008 with The Clone Wars, yet has become one of the most iconic Star Wars characters on the roster, and even has her own upcoming live-action series.
Related: Is Star Wars: The Bad Batch Canon?
So, Star Wars: Visions looks to be one of the most unique and alternative additions to the Star Wars franchise to date, and will perhaps be the faraway galaxy's answer to Marvel's What If...? The new anime show even has an upcoming novel set for release on October 12, Ronin: A Visions Novel, which will be an expansion of "The Duel". Who knows whether the other episodes will be built upon in other forms of media, but this is already a good sign for a show that's non-canon.
All nine episodes of Star Wars: Visions will be available to stream on September 22 on Disney+, and will boast a cast that includes Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Brian Tee, Lucy Liu, Alison Brie, Neil Patrick Harris, Simu Liu, and Temuera Morrison, who will once again be reprising his role as Boba Fett, as seen in The Mandalorian.