Carly Lane
March 13, 2015 12:03 pm

If you were chilling on the Internet yesterday, then you’ve probably heard about the new Star Wars updates about the series of films scheduled to be released. But you’re likely also a little confused — because there’s actually three totally different films coming out. We know what you’re thinking: THREE Star Wars films?! Could life GET any better? But it’s all a little overwhelming, and in case you’re still trying to figure out how to keep the facts straight, we thought we’d break it down for you. Here are some facts we definitely know.

How do these movies fit into the franchise?

Episode VII is going to be called The Force Awakens and Episode VIII, the film that was just announced the other day, doesn’t have a working title yet. There’s also a third Star Wars movie that will be outside of the original set of films which was already announced, but this venture has a title: Rogue One.

While The Force Awakens and the untitled Episode VIII film are going to be a continuation of the original set of films, with The Force Awakens picking up approximately 30 years later from Return of the Jedi, Rogue One is going to be a completely new standalone film (even though it gets its own episode title). Think of it as a Star Wars spinoff movie.

Okay, so who’s directing?

J.J. Abrams (the man behind such amazing projects as Alias, LOST and the Star Trek reboot films) is directing Episode VII. Gareth Edwards, whom you may know from such movies as Godzilla will be at the helm for Episode VIII. Rian Johnson, the director of films like Brick and Looper (he likes his JGL) is going to be the director for Rogue One. Still with us? OK, awesome!

Who’s starring in these movies?

Several of the cast members from the original trilogy — that means Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill, not to mention Peter Mayhew, Anthony Daniels and Kenny Baker! — are going to make a return for The Force Awakens. They’ll be joined by rad actors such as Adam Driver, John Boyega (who makes his first appearance in the amaze trailer!), Lupita Nyong’o and Andy Serkis. No names have been announced yet for Episode VIII.

As far as Rogue One goes, the only actress who’s been cast so far is Felicity Jones (but we are totally on board with that).

Have any plot details been announced yet?

Not really. We’re still pretty much in the dark on what to expect from these characters in all three movies.

The exciting thing about Rogue One is that it’ll be penned by the man behind the script for the 2015 Cinderella movie, Chris Weitz — so we’re hoping that the same kind of magic and nostalgia will cross over to this film as well.

When will these be coming out in theaters?

The Force Awakens is still set to be released on December 18 (like an early holiday present to us all). As of now, Rogue One will start filming this summer and be released on December 16, 2016. And as far as the untitled Episode VIII is concerned, we’re looking at a release date of May 26, 2017. It’s safe to say the next few years are going to be pretty awesome.

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