Sorry, Star Wars fans. There’s no easy way to say this. If you were planning on a The Rise of Skywalker reveal at San Diego Comic-Con next month, you can forget it. There will be no Star Wars: Episode IX panel at the event this year.
This news comes to us from sdcccblog.com. According to the report, Germain Lussier of io9 has information indicating that, what could have been one of the biggest events of SDCC 2019, now won’t even happen. He cites as one of the reasons the fact that D23 Expo 2019 will occur in Anaheim barely a month after SDCC. If that truly is the case, I’m calling this move, omitting The Rise of Skywalker from the Hall H slate, yet another of Disney and Lucasfilm’s Star Wars blunders.
The Rise of Skywalker to skip SDCC
In discussing the matter, Lussier claims that J.J. Abrams wanted to make as big a spectacle of Episode IX as they did with The Force Awakens in 2015. Because they couldn’t figure out a way to top that year’s event, however, they opted to skip Hall H at SDCC 2019 entirely. In doing so, Kathleen Kennedy and company may have just added another notch to their growing belt of Star Wars mismanagement.
There’s no question the studios and their executives (Disney/Bob Iger; Lucasfilm/Kennedy) completely mishandled Solo: A Star Wars Story. Likewise, no film in the franchise created so much divisiveness in the fandom than The Last Jedi. There is still damage control to be done with the fans. Granted, the upcoming Mandalorian series and return of The Clone Wars will go a long way. Still, The Rise of Skywalker failing to have a presence at SDCC seems a matter of taking one step forward, two steps back. Fans will be sorely disappointed.
Disney keeping Star Wars for D23?
More than that, fans may even be angry if The Rise of Skywalker does get its own showcase at D23 Expo 2019 in August. Tickets to that event by and large get sold out quickly, with premium ticket packages going only to paid, Disney Fan Club members. Not every Star Wars fan is a general Disney fan. Therefore Disney and Lucasfilm just denied a huge fan base the opportunity to learn about the last, episodic Star Wars film at SDCC, a completely general audience event.
Yes, there will still be a Lucasfilm pavilion at SDCC, but with no The Rise of Skywalker panel, it just won’t be the same.