Rose Tico and Luke Skywalker’s fuzzy friends, the Porgs from Star Wars: The Last Jedi, are among the new characters making their debut in Lucasfilm’s online animated series Star Wars: Forces of Destiny. Making its debut with a series of 16 three-minute shorts, Forces of Destiny debuted online last July, featuring narratives highlighting such heroines of the Star Wars movie series and animated TV series as Princess Leia, Padme Amidala, Rey, Jyn Erso and Ahsoka Tano. Created with a young female audience in mind as a way to introduce them to the Star Wars universe, Forces of Destiny in most cases featured the voices of the stars who originated the roles in live-action or elsewhere, including Natalie Portman, Daisy Ridley, Felicity Jones and Ashley Eckstein.
Eventually the series expanded to feature other familiar Star Wars characters, including Luke Skywalker, Chewbacca, Anakin Skywalker, Han Solo and Finn. With a full merchandising campaign to support the series, it was clear from the start that Forces of Destiny was going to be more than a one-shot venture, and now, Lucasfilm is giving a sneak peek at who will be featured in the next set of Forces of Destiny episodes.
According to EW, eight more Forces of Destiny episodes will be simultaneously released Monday at 10 p.m. PT on YouTube and Disney.com, and debut March 25 on the Disney Channel. The new episodes will feature not only the likes of Rey, Jyn and Padme, but will introduce Rose (Kelly Marie Tran) to the series. The episode, which will also feature the voice of Tran, finds Rose, Finn and BB-8 on their way to Canto Bight (featured in The Last Jedi), where they encounter dangerous creatures aboard a pod. Also crossing over from the eighth episode in the Skywalker family saga will be the Porgs, in an episode that will feature the cuddly creatures interacting with Rey during her Jedi training on Ahch-To.
Mark Hamill will be returning to Forces of Destiny as Luke, in an episode that will take place during his training with Yoda on Dagobah, which of course was a pivotal setting in The Empire Strikes Back. Other episodes will include Rey in a Force Awakens setting, as well as the return of Jyn Erso, the fearless leader of the Rebels in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
While the Forces of Destiny episodes are tailored with a younger audience in mind, there’s no question that they will appeal to Star Wars fans of all ages. With stories carefully crafted around popular scenes in the Star Wars films and animated series, Lucasfilm is giving viewers even more material to expand the Star Wars canon, and perhaps in some cases, they will give some narrative clarity to some unanswered questions in the films. Best of all, it gives Star Wars fans new material to enjoy as they patiently await the release of Solo: A Star Wars Story in May, as well as Episode IX in 2019.