Here’s Why Star Wars: Episode IX May Be Split Into Two Movies


When Star Wars: Episode IX arrives in cinemas next year, it’ll be doing so under a huge amount of pressure. Aside from being an enjoyable and sufficiently profitable blockbuster in its own right, the J.J. Abrams-helmed flick faces the challenge of wrapping up the latest trilogy on a satisfying note while ideally winning back some of the disgruntled fans put off by The Last Jedi without alienating the franchise’s current supporters. That’s a lot to put on one film – arguably too much – so it’s only natural that a rumor started circulating earlier this month that Disney are considering splitting next year’s feature into two separate movies.

Moreover, it seems that at least one Redditor has arrived at the same idea. User Mattlantis opens their post by observing the uncertain state of the Star Wars saga, in terms of both its story and its current standing with the fanbase.

“Regardless of your personal opinion, the Last Jedi was very divisive and it left the series on a shaky note. At this point there are very few Resistance members left and it is unclear where the story can and should go from this point. In addition, it is arguable that the audience relationship with many of the remaining characters is tepid at best.”

The user then goes on to point out that the next movie will be throwing even more characters into the mix, and suggests that the best way to do this expansive cast justice would be a one-film extension of this latest ‘trilogy.’

“Among others Dominic Monaghan, Matt Smith, and Keri Russell have been added and Billy Dee Williams is returning as Lando Calrissian. That is a lot of new and prominent faces to introduce to this trilogy, have them make any meaningful impact, and then wrap up the trilogy and series as a whole. So, to the point of my theory, what if Episode IX isn’t the end to the series? What if the “sequel trilogy” isn’t a trilogy at all, but a quadrilogy?”

After further stressing that an additional movie could give Abrams the space he needs to juggle all these character arcs, Mattlantis wraps things up by arguing that the tradition of Star Wars episodes coming in threes needn’t be set in stone, and that a fourth movie could be Disney’s way of leading its audiences into the franchise’s mysterious future.

“There is no hard and fast rule that Star Wars stories need to be trilogies, and with the release of Last Jedi, Disney certainly has a way of “subverting expectations.” Obviously there’s no evidence that an Episode X is in production, and I don’t believe any of the Sequel Trilogy stars are signed on to a fourth movie (at least publicly). But Disney has confirmed its intention to continue to release Star Wars movies and due to the inherent secrecy that comes with the involvement of JJ Abrams I believe it is at least a possibility.”

By this Redditor’s own admission, there isn’t a whole lot of evidence to back up this theory for the time being, making this more an argument of what Disney should do, rather than what it necessarily will do. Still, even if it is just wishful thinking, a fourth film may not be the worst route for the franchise to take at this point, seeing how the upcoming sequel could well be burdened with more characters and plotlines than it can handle. It’s already strongly suspected that this will be the longest installment in the series so far, but will an extended runtime really be enough to tie up all loose ends?

In any case, we’ll see how Abrams and his team attempt to pull off the tricky feat of bringing this latest phase of the franchise to a close when Star Wars: Episode IX comes out on December 20th, 2019.