Lucasfilm Story Group Establishes New Expanded Universe Canon

Since the purchase of Lucasfilm by Disney, and the announcement of new films, one of the big questions Star Wars fans had concerned what would become of the Expanded Universe of books, comics, and video games.  Yesterday, that question was answered.

Earlier in the year we learned that a new group had been formed called the Lucasfilm Story Group and that they would be responsible for Star Wars canon going forward.  Up until now the only canon were the six Saga films and Star Wars: The Clone Wars or, what George Lucas had produced.  The existing Expanded Universe will now be know as Star Wars Legends and will remain in print.  Starting this year, all new books and comics will be considered part of the new canon that will be created with Star Wars Rebels and the new films beginning with Star Wars Episode VII. posted an article titled “The Legendary Star Wars Expanded Universe Turn a New Page” which explains the fate of the existing EU and includes an excellent video from Dave Filoni and other writers on what the EU has meant to fans.

A companion article, “Disney Publishing Worldwide and Random House Announce Relaunch of Star Wars Adult Fiction Line” lays out the new path.  Beginning on September 2, 2014, “Star Wars: A New Dawn,” by John Jackson Miller, will be released.  This adult novel will introduce Kanan Jarrus and Hera Syndulla, two stars of Star Wars Rebels.  This first book will be the first step in the new canon and part of this new collaboration between the writers, artists and producers of the TV and film projects.

Three additional titles will be released over the following months with “Star Wars: Tarkin” coming from James Luceno in November, “Star Wars: Heir to the Jedi” by Kevin Hearne in January 2015 and “Star Wars: Lords of the Sith” by Paul Kemp in March 2015.  The photos and descriptions below were first posted on the Del Rey Star Wars Books Facebook page.

Star Wars A New Dawn - John Jackson Miller Star Wars Tarkin - James Luceno Star Wars Heir to the Jedi - Kevin Hearne Star Wars Lords of the Sith - Paul Kemp
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away….
STAR WARS: A NEW DAWN by John Jackson MillerOur very first official canon novel set solidly in the legendary “Dark Times” between Episodes III and IV, A NEW DAWN will introduce readers to two main characters from the upcoming Star Wars: Rebels animated series—Kanan Jarrus and Hera Syndulla—and will feature jacket art by Doug Wheatley, as well as a foreword by Dave Filoni, one of the executive producers of The Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels. It goes on sale September 2, 2014.
In our second upcoming novel created in collaboration with the Lucasfilm Story Group, bestselling Star Wars veteran James Luceno gives Tarkin the Darth Plagueis treatment, bringing a legendary character from A New Hope to full, fascinating life. Coming November 4, 2014. Jacket art by David Smit. A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away….
STAR WARS: HEIR TO THE JEDI by Kevin HearneA thrilling new adventure set between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back, and—for the first time ever—written entirely from Luke Skywalker’s first-person point of view. Created in collaboration with the Lucasfilm Story Group. Coming January 2015. Jacket art by Larry Rostant.
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away….
STAR WARS: LORDS OF THE SITH by Paul S. KempWhen the Emperor and his notorious apprentice, Darth Vader, find themselves stranded in the middle of insurgent action on an inhospitable planet, they must rely solely on each other, the Force, and their awesome martial skills to prevail. Created in collaboration with the Lucasfilm Story Group. Coming March 2015. Jacket art by Aaron McBride.


Fans of the current EU shouldn’t feel alienated by this new path for the Star Wars Universe.  The stories already out there still exist and the books will remain in print under the Legends banner for new fans looking for new stories.  Even though there was a certain amount of cohesiveness in the current EU, it isn’t as mapped out as the new path appears to be.  It was always a longshot that any of the existing storylines would be directly adapted to the new films and by leaving them as-is, and allowing new writers freedom to create, it could lead to all-new stories that will be as loved as the current stories are.

Even though the existing EU will no longer be part of the Universe going forward, that doesn’t mean that fan favorite characters, planets or aliens are out.  According to Jennifer Heddle, Senior Editor LucasBooks, posting to Twitter, the Expanded Universe is available to writers to draw from and the Story Group will have final say on whether things can be brought into the new canon.

One things is for sure, newer fans of Star Wars who have had trouble finding a starting point to reading books or comics will have a friendly jumping-on point.