Lucasfilm’s Dave Filoni Considers R-Rated Star Wars, But With Caveats

Dave Filoni, Lucasfilm’s Chief Creative Officer and the visionary behind several acclaimed Star Wars series such as The Clone Wars, Ahsoka, and Star Wars Rebels, has expressed an openness to the idea of an R-rated Star Wars film, albeit with some reservations.

Known for his deep engagement with the Star Wars lore, Filoni’s insights into the saga’s narrative depths, like the emotional layers of Darth Maul’s final duel in The Phantom Menace, demonstrate his profound connection to the series.

During a recent interview on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, Filoni was questioned about the feasibility of venturing into more mature thematic territory with Star Wars, perhaps akin to the adult content seen in series like Game of Thrones or House of the Dragon. While Filoni acknowledged the intriguing nature of such a project, he emphasised the importance of maintaining the franchise’s core values, which have historically catered to a younger audience alongside adults.

“Sure, I mean, I don’t know. I think it’s interesting. The bottom line is whatever we do it has to be really well done,” Filoni explained. He cited the series Andor as an example of a Star Wars project that successfully targeted an adult audience without sacrificing the integrity of the saga. Andor, led by Tony Gilroy, was lauded for its excellence, proving that there’s a market for more mature Star Wars themes that still resonate with broader audiences, including younger viewers.

Filoni added, “[The franchise] encompasses all types of styles, and the creative of the particular story driving it is the most important thing, and they should do something that’s within their comfort zone. Otherwise, we’re to imagine that everyone’s going to come in and pretend they’re George Lucas. I’ve learned from George, but certainly I’m not the same as George when it comes to making movies. He’s a one of a kind generational talent. I like wolves and put them in my Star Wars. We’re just different and that’s okay. But there are principles [that should run through all of Star Wars] about choices and being a good person and being more selfless and getting over your fears that are timeless no matter what style you’re talking about.”

star wars dave filoni

In addition to his television projects, Filoni is also engaged in developing his own Star Wars movie, intended to bridge various narratives from the Disney+ series. While no release date is set for this film, it joins a list of anticipated projects including The Mandalorian & Grogu and a new Rey-focused film directed by James Mangold.