News: Project Luminous (Star Wars)
Being a Star Wars fan right now is pretty dang good. Post The Rise of Skywalker comics. The Mandalorian s2 coming this fall. BRAND NEW CLONE WARS. Baby Yoda toys galore. It’s Celebration in Anaheim and Disneyland is hosting Star Wars After Dark.
My head is spinning.
So what’s a little more news by way of a brand new publishing adventure titled PROJECT LUMINOUS?!
What is Project Luminous?
Project Luminous is a publishing collaboration between Disney Lucasfilm Publishing, Marvel Comics, IDW Publishing and Del Rey, with phase one spanning 3 books and 2 comic series. These stories are written by Claudia Gray, Justina Ireland, Daniel Jose Older, Cavan Scott, and Charles Soule, all seasoned Star Wars creators (and many familiar YA authors!).
Project Luminous was conceived over the last year, having been announced at Star Wars Celebration in Chicago and on the horizon since 2014. It has long been rumored to take place in the High Republic era, when the Outer Rim was unknown territory and the Jedi expanded their presence throughout the galaxy. Why this is, when the galaxy was at peace and the Jedi believed the Sith to be extinct…
This screencap got me doubly excited for Project Luminous. pic.twitter.com/NubHnuaybQ— Gary Vegas (@TheDonkeyDrip) February 21, 2020
What is the High Republic Era?
The High Republic is an unexplored era in the history of Star Wars. Looking at the Star Wars timeline, the High Republic Era takes place 200 years before The Phantom Menace.
Before the Project Luminous announcement, we had four key moments that clued us into the High Republic Era.
- Dooku: Lost Jedi: The first mention of the High Republic gave us more insight into the hubris of the Jedi and their curiosity with the Dark Side of the force. Dooku noted that several High Republic Era Jedi attempted to become Sith Lords after studying Dark Side objects. Whew.
- The Rise of Kylo Ren: Ben Solo, Luke Skywalker, and Lor San Tekka (who is wise in Jedi lore) travel to an old Jedi outpost, one originally used during the High Republic Era. Of note – Charles Soule also writes this comic.
Oh, and because we love easter eggs, here’s a possible one: In The Rise of Kylo Ren #2, Ben, Luke, and Lor San Tekka come across this Jedi Holocron in the High Republic temple that holds a very specific looking Jedi. Considering Charles Soule writes this comic, I was hopeful that we had a little piece of insight. Can’t wait to learn more about this Jedi!
- Star Wars #2 (2020): As Leia is trying to rally the rebels, she taps into Commander Grek to give a speech and share about their operation. The operation is named after this space station…Operation Starlight. Keep reading. This comic is ALSO written by Charles Soule, who apparently doesn’t sleep.
- Star Wars Adventures #30: Two adventurers come across a deprecated library that was destroyed by none other than…the Nihil. Cavan Scott, just out here laying out more easter eggs.
It’s important to note the name of the publishing event (Project Luminous) and the Yoda gif above. Yoda was 900 years old during the original trilogy, making him a possible character during the events in Project Luminous. Maz Kanata is also a possibility!
Where does Project Luminous fit in?
Project Luminous is an opportunity for publishing to explore uncharted territory (literally and figuratively) without the constraints of the original material.
With that said, Project Luminous is two things: 1. Jedis acting like Texas Rangers and 2. Space Vikings.
Yes, you read that correctly.
Ok, it’s also two more things: 1. A quote from Qui-Gon Jinn: ““For over a thousand generations the Jedi were the guardians of peace and justice.” and 2. A question: What scares the Jedi?
In Project Luminous, we will meet a whole new group of Jedi, following a cataclysmic event that shakes up the order and peace they’ve enjoyed.
Something tells me it could have something to do with this space station, referenced above.
We are also going to meet a new group of baddies, called the Nihil. Their motto? “You can’t take it with you, but we can take it from you.” Yikes.
How will we meet them? Phase one spans middle grade, YA, and adult with three novels and a comic series and also enters the young reader phase with a matching Star Wars adventure comic. You can already preorder all three books and I bet if you contact your local comic shop, you can add the two comics to your pull.
- Light of the Jedi by Charles Soule
- Into the Dark by Claudia Gray
- A Test of Courage by Justina Ireland
- The High Republic Adventures by Daniel Jose Older
- The High Republic by Cavan Scott
Phase one is only the beginning – look at the future partners lined up. Viz is a manga publisher (have you checked out the Lost Stars manga?!), FYI. We can expect kid’s tie-ins and more!
When can we expect Project Luminous content?
The wait won’t be long – the first book drops August 25th, just in time for Celebration. You know I’ll be standing in line to get my book signed, along with my stack of comics. We won’t have to wait long for more because the other two novels are out in September and October. I assume the comics will commence at the beginning, too.
Luckily we also have a whole bunch of new Star Wars content already scheduled for this year.
‼️ IMPORTANT DATES for #StarWars Fans ‼️— Lacey “Space Trash” Gilleran (@laceygilleran) February 24, 2020
2.24 – #ProjectLuminous
3.17 – #TheRiseofSkywalker Digital/📘
3.31 – TROS📽️/Art of TROS 📘
6.02 – 📘 Queen’s Peril
6.23 – 📘 Shadow Fall
8.04 – 📘 Free Fall
8.27 – #StarWarsCelebration/#Disneyland SW Nite
Oct. – #TheMandalorian S2
See here for all of the upcoming books and comics to be published this year.
What do I hope will happen?
First and foremost, there’s a Claudia Gray book and it better have romance for those two people on the cover. I love the title – Into the Dark – and the contrast it provides with the adult novel, Light of the Jedi. It’s easy to get into the pattern of Jedi – ALWAYS GOOD – and forget that Dooku and Ventress and Krell and many choices with negative outcomes have been made by the Jedi. No one party is all good or all bad because the world is not that black and white and villains are the hero of their own story. I’m here for this reluctant Jedi uncovering some truth and how that might shake the galaxy. Plus, I hope we see some of the rules we know come into play and be further shaped (the rule of 2, how the Jedi went from Texas Rangers to a version of Christianity in space…).
I’m excited to have a comic series based on the Nihil. Give us some good balanced perspective. I’m also here for new adventure stories and how that will expand the world for readers young and slightly less young.
What do you need to know going in?
Honestly, I gave you way more info than you need to know to start. The thing about Star Wars is you have to suspend some belief and just go with it, no matter where you are in your journey. Feel free to join in the fandom in whatever way feels meaningful to you.
As a person who is currently reading their 30th and 31st Star Wars books this year, I can highly recommend jumping into the new canon now. There’s so much more happening off screen that makes only enhances the stories familiar to most. If you want to get started on Star Wars publishing, Barnes & Noble has this handy guide to the new canon universe publishing tie ins. You do not have to read them in any order and it’s totally ok to skip around. One minute I’m reading in the New Republic era and the next I’m over in the Rise of the Empire (with a side of Classic Era). Star Wars is so popular that your library should have plenty for you to dive into!
See the official Disney announcement here.