Complete Guide to the New Star Wars Canon

When Disney acquired Star Wars back in 2012 it didn’t take them long to make significant changes to the beloved franchise. One of the most significant changes that Disney announced was that the Expanded Universe as we knew it was no longer canon. Instead, Disney wanted to build their own Expanded Universe around the films. This would allow them to take the story in their new films in different directions than the established timeline in the EU. The downside to this is that many of the fan favorite EU characters and story-lines are no longer official. The Star Wars canon established in the EU spanned thousands of years, and revolved around a lot more than Jedis. There are great stories about bounty hunters, or about criminal gang wars. After the reboot, Disney seems to be focusing only on the war between Jedi and the Sith, but other story-lines might start to surface later. The good thing about this reboot is that Disney and Lucasarts have established their own story department that is responsible for developing the timeline. This means that everything Disney releases under the Star Wars brand after April 2014 will be official and canon.

As a Star Wars fan I wanted to get my hands on this new canon material so that I could be up-to-date on most events before the release of The Force Unleashed. Initially I thought that the new canon consisted simply of the new comics and books that were released over the last few months. Turns out that it was a bit more than that, so I did some research to figure out what to read. So for those of you that are interested in getting into the new timeline, here’s my guide to everything included in the Disney Star Wars canon. Each segment is in chronological order. For a complete timeline that you can copy and print, jump to the bottom of the article.

NOTE! I have not included the novelizations of the films and TV-shows in this list.

Movies

There should be no surprises here. Disney has announced some really interesting film projects in the Star Wars Universe, so this list will get longer over the next few years.

downloadThe Phantom Menace (1999)

Ah, the movie that introduced two of my favorite characters (Qui-Gon Jinn and Darth Maul) only to take them away just as fast. Oh, and Jar Jar Binks is still canon. Sorry.

The dormant Sith resurface to reclaim their old glory. While conflict grows in the Galactic Empire, two Jedi Knights discover a young boy who may bring balance to the Force.

 

Star_Wars_-_Episode_II_Attack_of_the_Clones_(movie_poster)Attack of the Clones (2002)

Set 10 years after The Phantom Menace, Obi-Wan is tasked with investigating an assassination attempt on the Senator and discovers the first stage of the Clone Wars. Meanwhile, Anakin and Padmé share a forbidden romance.

 

 

revenge_of_the_sith_poster-25118Revenge of the Sith (2005)

The Clone Wars near an end. The Sith Lord Darth Sidious steps out of the shadows. Anakin struggles with his emotions and puts his relationships with Obi-Wan and Padmé at risk.

 

 

 

3558300-2807007867-han_sUntitled Han Solo Prequel (2018)

The origin story of a young Han, set years before his appearance in A New Hope.

 

 

 

74068d_467e9358ee3e4556aef691046552c8faRogue One (2016)

This film will be the first in the Star Wars Anthology series that will revolve around stand-alone stories set in the official Star Wars Universe. The film will tell the story of a band of Rebel fighters attempting to steal the plans for the Death Star.

 

 

AnewhopeA New Hope (1977)

Luke Skywalker joins forces with a Jedi Knight, a cocky pilot, a wookie and two droids to save the universe from the Empire’s world-destroying battle-station, while also attempting to rescue Princess Leia from the evil Darth Vader.

 

 

star-wars-empire-strikes-back-posterThe Empire Strikes Back (1980)

After the rebels have been brutally overpowered by the Empire on their newly established base, Luke Skywalker takes advanced Jedi training with Master Yoda, while his friends are pursued by Darth Vader as part of his plan to capture Luke.

 

 

ReturnOfTheJediPoster1983Return of the Jedi (1983)

After rescuing Han Solo from the palace of Jabba the Hutt, the rebels attempt to destroy the second Death Star, while Luke struggles to make Vader return from the dark side of the Force.

 

 


CRnmX3rXIAISuF-The Force Awakens (2015)

Very few details of the plot is known at this point, except that it is set approximately 30 years after the events in Return of the Jedi. Central characters from previous Star Wars films will appear, such as Han Solo, Luke, and Leia. The film will feature the new leads Finn, Rey and Poe Dameron.

 

 

star-wars-episode-7-fan-1Episode VIII (2017)

TBA

 

 

 

star-wars-episode-7-fan-1Episode IX (2019)

TBA

 

 

 

TV Series

The_Clone_Wars_film_posterThe Clone Wars (2008 – 2015)

The Clone Wars consists of one feature length movie and a TV series. I’m including them all here as I consider them to be part of one overarching story. The feature film takes place shortly before the events in the TV series.

This series shows a wide variety of stories, events, and battles that takes place during the Clone Wars. Some episodes are stand-alone, while others tell a longer story over several episodes. This series stars many familiar characters, like Obi-Wan Kenobi and Master Yoda, but also introduce many new characters that become prominent in the canon.

star-wars-rebels-spark-of-rebellion-dvd-coverRebels (2014 – ongoing)

Five years before A New Hope, a group of rebels band together on a freighter starship called Ghost. They complete various operations against the Empire. The series also focuses on the origins of some of the groups that will later form the Rebel Alliance.

Rebels consists of 2 films and 2 seasons so far. The first film, Rebels: Spark of Rebellion, was released in 2014 and is the beginning of the story. Call it a long Pilot episode if you will. Season 1 picks up right after the events of the film. The second film, Rebels: the Siege of Lothal, was aired in 2015. Season 2 follows the second film and is still ongoing as of this writing.

Books

The number of Star Wars novels is growing fast, with 10 books released in 2015 alone. I don’t expect there will be any less next year, so this list will probably be twice as long by next Christmas.

PS! Also keep an eye on StarWars.com for the short stories published there.

Dark_Disciple_CoverDark Disciple (2015)

Set before Revenge of the Sith.

When the Jedi decide to target Count Dooku himself, they turn to his ex-apprentice, Asajj Ventress, for help in getting closer to the slippery Sith Lord. But when unexpected sparks fly between Ventress and Quinlan Vos, the unorthodox Jedi sent to work with her, the mission becomes a web of betrayal, alliances, secrets, and a dark plotting that might just be the undoing of both Jedi and Sith – and everything in between!

TarkinCoverTarkin (2014)

Set between Revenge of the Sith and Rebels.

A fascinating book about one of the Emperor’s most dedicated servants. Groomed by the ruthless politician and Sith Lord who would be emperor, Governor Wilhuff Tarkin rises through the Imperial ranks, enforcing his authority mercilessly. Under Tarkin’s guidance, an ultimate weapon of unparalleled destruction moves ever closer to completion. But insurgency remains a genuine threat. The Emperor entrusts his most formidable agents to deal with the group of rebels with swift and brutal action: Darth Vader and Governor Tarkin.


Lords_of_the_SithLords of the Sith (2015)

Set between Revenge of the Sith and Rebels.

When the Emperor and his notorious apprentice, Darth Vader, find themselves stranded in the middle of insurgent action on an inhospitable planet, they must rely on each other, the Force, and their own ruthlessness to survive.

 

9781101965030

Rise of the Empire (2015)

This book is actually a collection of previously published books. It collects Tarkin, and A New Dawn, as well as 3 previously unpublished short stories.

 

 

 

ANewDawnA New Dawn (2014)

Set after Revenge of the Sith and shortly before Rebels. This book is a prequel to Rebels.

Emperor Palpatine, once Chancellor of the Republic and secretly a Sith follower, has brought his own peace and order to the galaxy. Peace through brutal repression, and order through increasing control of his subjects’ lives. But even as the Emperor tightens his iron grip, others have begun to question his means and motives. And still others, whose lives were destroyed by Palpatine’s machinations, lay scattered about the galaxy like unexploded bombs, waiting to go off…

512ZruSRFTL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Rebels and Servants of the Empire series (2014 – 2015)

These two series of books are tie-ins to the popular TV-series Rebels. They are shorter than the normal Star Wars books and aimed at young readers. I have added them here for completion’s sake as they are still canon. Rebels consists of 6 books, while Servants of the Empire consists of 4.

Also, the novelization of the first Rebels film Spark of Rebellion (novel title The Rebellion Begins) contains some scenes not shown in the film.

Smugglers-Run_DBGSmuggler’s Run (2015)

Set between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back.

Han and Chewie must fly the Millennuim Falcon on a top secret mission for the Rebellion, while evading ruthless bounty hunters and a relentless Imperial agent.

 

 

Heir_to_the_JediHeir to the Jedi (2015)

Set between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back

A brilliant alien cryptographer renowned for her ability to breach even the most advanced communications systems is being detained by Imperial agents determined to exploit her exceptional talents for the Empire’s purposes. But her sympathies lie with the Rebels, and she’s willing to join their effort in exchange for being reunited with her family. Challenged by ruthless Imperial bodyguards, death-dealing enemy battleships, and merciless bounty hunters, Luke plunges head-on into a high stakes espionage operation that will push his abilities as a Rebel fighter and would-be Jedi to the limit.

91DqTS2cXGLThe Weapon of a Jedi (2015)

Set between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back.

Luke finds himself drawn to a mysterious planet, where he must use the Force to save a young girl – and survive in a dangerous duel against a new villain.

 

 

Battlefront_Twilight_Company_coverBattefront: Twilight Company (2015)

Set after A New Hope and Battle of Yavin

The book follows a squad of ordinary soldiers caught in the tranches of the galactic war, where the ideals of a free galaxy can seem light years away, where loyalty to one’s squad is paramount, yet every skirmish, every confrontation, every life or death decision can bring you closer to that ultimate struggle between good and evil.

 

Star-Wars-Moving-TargetMoving Target (2015)

Set between Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi.

Princess Leia must lead a ragtag group of rebels on a treacherous decoy mission against the evil Galactic Empire.

 

 

Lost_StarsLost Stars (2015)

This book actually spans over several Era’s on the timeline, but I have placed it here since some of the events concern the New Republic Era.

Experience the most important events in the Star Wars universe, from the rise of the Rebellion to the fall of the Empire, through the eyes of two childhood friends – Ciena Ree and Thane Kyrell – who have grown up to become an Imperial Officer and a Rebel pilot. Now on opposite sides of the war, will these two star crossed lover reunite, or will duty tear them – and the galaxy – apart?

aftermath_new.6.red_Aftermath (2015)

This is the first book in a trilogy. The sequels, Aftermath: Life Debt and Aftermath: Empire’s End will be released in May 2016 and in 2017 respectively. The first book is set shortly after Return of the Jedi.

The second Death Star has been destroyed, the Emperor killed, and Darth Vader struck down. But the battle for freedom is far from over. Determined to preserve the Empire’s power, the surviving Imperial elite are converging on Akiva for a top-secret emergency summit to consolidate their forces and rally for a counter strike. But they haven’t reckoned on Norra, a battle weary former rebel fighter, and her new-found allies – her technical-genius son, a Zabrak bounty hunter, and a reprobate Imperial defector – who are prepared to do whatever they must to end the Empire’s oppressive reign once and for all.

New-Republic-Bloodline-CoverNew Republic: Bloodline (March 2016)

Very little is known about the book at this time. It will take place six years prior to The Force Awakens.

 

 

 

In addition, one collection of short stories titled Tales From a Galaxy Far, Far Away: Aliens will be released in April 2016.

Comics

With Disney’s acquisition of Star Wars, the comic rights naturally went to Marvel Comics. The new comics have been doing well and keep topping sales charts in the US.

obiwan-anakin-1Obi-Wan and Anakin (January 2016)

Set 3 years after The Phantom Menace. 5-issue mini-series.

It’s been a few years since Obi-Wan pledged to train the young “chosen one”, but even as they have grown closer during training, it has been a difficult road. Now, called to a remote planet for assistance, Master and Padawan may be pushed to the breaking point.

 

Star_Wars_Kanan_the_Last_Padawan_TPBKanan the Last Padawan (2015)

Set shortly after Revenge of the Sith. The series is still ongiong.

Kanan Jarrus. In Rebels, he’s a cocky, sarcastic renegade fighting against the Galactic Empire alongside the ragtag crew of the Ghost. But years before, at the height of the Clone Wars, he was known as Caleb Dume, a Jedi Padawan training under Master Depa Billaba. Neither Master nor apprentice ever suspected that their ‘loyal’ Clone Troopers would turn on them upon the issuing of Order 66 – the Emperor’s order to execute all Jedi. How did Caleb Dume escape the purge?

24765Darth Maul – Son of Dathomir (2014)

Set during The Clone Wars. 4 issue mini-series.

The last Star Wars comic by DH, as also the only one to be featured in the new cannon. This series is a continuation of Darth Maul’s story from the Clone Wars TV-show. Maul has been captured by his former master, Darth Sidious, who attempts to draw out Maul’s mother Talzin, leader of the Nightsisters, and destroy her. The Jedi Order become involved in the hopes that they can defeat Maul, Dooku, and Grievous in one fell sweep – and in doing so, end the Clone Wars.

54ad4744d5bb5Princess Leia (2015)

Set after A New Hope. 5 issue mini-series.

Princess Leia Organa grapples with her role in the Rebel Alliance after the destruction of Alderaan and partners with Evaan Verlaine, a fellow Alderaanian, to save surviving Alderaanians from the Galactic Empire.

 

1334641503153796965Chewbacca (2015)

Set directly after the events in A New Hope. 5 issue mini-series.

The story sees Chewbacca, temporarliy stranded on a planet during a mission for the Rebel Alliance. With the help of a friend, he comes into conflict with the Galactic Empire.

 

portrait_incredibleDarth Vader (2015)

Set between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back. Ongoing series.

Darth Vader must suffer the consequences of his failure to stop the Rebel Alliance during the Battle of Yavin and the assault on Cymoon 1, and is sent by Darth Sidious on a mission to negotiate with Jabba the Hut. Meanwhile, Darth hires two bounty hunters to capture Luke Skywalker and a mysterious agent of the Emperor.

 

156272_653316_1-600x775Marvel Star Wars (2015)

Set between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back. Ongoing series.

The comic features the story of Luke, Leia, Han, Chewbacca, C-3PO, and R2-D2 between Episode IV and V. While the series is about the whole team it is about Luke’s journey. There will be flashbacks featuring Ben Kenobi, and more details about Han’s past will be revealed.

stwvaderdown2015001-noupc-145792-600x911Vader Down (2015)

Set after A New Hope.

Vader Down is not a separate comic in itself. It is a crossover event in the Star Wars comics. This event will be introduced in the one-shot comic Vader Down, then continue in Darth Vader issues 13-15, and Star Wars issue 13-14, totaling 6 issues.

 

lando1Lando (2015)

Set prior to The Empire Strikes Back. 5 issue mini-series.

Before he joined the rebellion, before he ran Cloud City, Lando made his way in the galaxy getting by on some swindles, some swagger, and a smile. Lobot at his side, Lando has a plan to steal a very valuable ship… but has he bitten off more than he can chew?

 

z15Shattered Empire (2015)

Set between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens. 4 issue mini-series.

Emperor Palpatine’s twenty year reign of terror came to an abrupt end in the skies above the forest moon of Endor. A decisive victory for the Rebel Alliance, but even with the loss of its leadership, the Empire’s Moffs and regional governors retained their hold on important systems from the Core to the Outer Rim, thanks to the might of the Imperial Strafleet. Now, those Moffs jockey for position and control, and the heroes of the Rebel Alliance will soon discover that a wounded and fractious Empire may be more dangerous than any threat they faced before!

STWC3PO2015001_DC11C-3PO (2015)

Set between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens. One-shot comic.

Tells the story of how C-3PO received a red-colored arm.

 

 

Games

With the reboot of the Expanded Universe all previously released video games were also rejected from the canon. This means that fan favorites such as Knights of the Old Republic and the cancelled 1313 are not part of the timeline. Electronics Arts is, for now, the only game publisher granted rights to create new Star Wars games.

22starwars-pic1-articleLargeCommander (2014)

Set after A New Hope.

Which parts of this game that are canon or not is up for debate. While weapons, characters, and planets from the films are present, the storyline is not a set narrative. The player controls a band of mercenaries that establishes a base of operations on Tatooine. They can receive contract missions from both the Galactic Empire and the Rebel Alliance at first, but soon you have to permanently choose a side. The side you ally with will determine which weapons and vehicles you can use during missions.

2743161-5356Battlefront (2015)

I’m a bit unsure if this game should be on the list or not, but I have included it for completion’s sake. The game allows the player to experience some of the biggest battles known from the films as either the Rebels or the Empire. While these events are technically canon, some twists have been added to the game. For instance, while on Hoth, players can get power-ups that allow them to become Darth Vader or Luke and use their powers against the opposing team. While Vader and Luke were technically on Hoth during the battle, they never participated in it the way it is depicted in the game.

DOvS4BbHUprising (2015)

The game’s plot has been confirmed to be part of the new official canon and is set shortly after the events of Return of the Jedi. Unable to accept the death of Darth Vader and Palpatine as the fall of the Empire, Imperial Governor Adelhard refuses to release his grip on the Anoat Sector. Instead, he locks down the sector to prevent all incoming and outgoing space traffic to allow him to maintain his rule. As the Rebel Alliance has a small presence in the sector, smugglers, assassins, crime cartels, and nobles form their own rebellion against Adelhard.


Complete Timeline 2015:
(Click image for larger version)

Checklist


So there you have it! The complete timeline so far. Disney has wasted no time with filling up their Expanded Universe, and it will continue to grow rapidly. What are your thoughts on the new universe? Which titles interest you? Let us know in the comments and let’s build some hype for Episode VII!

EDIT: Added Rebels and Servants of the Empire novels to the list.

EDIT 2: Added upcoming comics, Darth Maul DH comic, Commander game, and updated the info on the Dark Disciple and Rebels novels. Updated checklist.

Iselynne

Iselynne is a viking and passionate gamer who finds it really awkward to write about them-self in third person. They are currently fighting a severe addiction to chocolate milk and their favourite Pokémon is Bulbasaur.

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