The Mandalorian made fans fall in love with its earnest characters and the post-Empire setting. Also, let’s be real, it’s hard not to love Grogu and Din Djarin. The creator of the show- Jon Favreau captured the magic of Star Wars in this show that viewers have always loved.
It is because of this that the viewers happily got lost in the far away galaxy every episode. So The Mandalorian as a show is definitely unique. And now it looks like a sibling show has been inspired by it. It is The Acolyte. Leslye Headland who is the showrunner for The Acolyte Disney+ series set in the end years of the High Republic era has spoken about The Mandalorian and how it has inspired her.
She has said that she wants viewers to experience the same feeling they have when watching Din Djarin and his little Grogu. What does she mean by this? Leslye clarified her statement in a recent new interview.
In a recently conducted interview with The Wrap, Leslye Headland discussed her feelings about watching The Mandalorian. She said that the show was great for the fans who love other areas of the Star Wars universe.
The showrunner said that the creative team of The Mandalorian made the show accessible to both the general and the hardcore fan audience. It’s something which impressed her a lot. Also, it’s something she hopes to recreate with her series. In the full quote she says:
“Jon Favreau did this perfectly with ‘The Mandalorian.’ That was a show that, in the second scene especially, really paid off if you’re a ‘Clone Wars’ fan and if you’re a fan of the IP and of other parts of ‘Star Wars’ media. You’re like, ‘Oh my God, that’s great. Oh, my God, that’s great. Oh, my God.’ And then the end of Season 1 with the Darksaber, you’re like, ‘Oh, my God, that’s amazing. So it’s going to go in this place.’ You start to know where it’s going or you start to anticipate where it’s going.”
The executive producer of The Acolyte went on to give the example of her mother who only had a brief idea of what Star Wars was about, but even she got invested in The Mandalorian due to its inclusive nature. She said:
“But also, my mom can watch ‘The Mandalorian.’ My mom, who has like a passing understanding of what ‘Star Wars’ is, can watch ‘Mandalorian’ and really get invested in the central connection between the main two characters, because it’s universal, because it’s deeply, deeply emblematic, I think, of what George Lucas wanted to bring to the world when he created it.”
Headland is absolutely right in thinking that franchises should cater to every group of people- both the hardcore fans and the general population just looking for entertainment. Also, contrary to popular thinking, writing a show that welcomes newcomers to a fictional world while still hiding easter eggs for the hardcore fans is actually really easy, as shown by The Mandalorian.
For example, in The Mandalorian’s “Chapter 14: The Tragedy,” the legendary bounty hunter Boba Fett meets our Mando Din Djarin for the very first time and says:
“I’m a simple man making his way through the galaxy. Like my father before me.”
Hardcore fans of the Star Wars franchise will recognize the line from Attack of the Clones, where Jango Fett, Boba’s father said something similar. But even if newcomers can’t catch where the line is from, it won’t decrease their viewing experience or make them feel like outsiders. In fact, this simple line packs a lot of punch. As such, it only elevates the viewing experience.
Hearing Leslye Headland heap praises on The Mandalorian shows us just how much of a fan she is of the entire Star Wars universe. It just strengthens the fact that she is the right person to lead The Acolyte.
Also, Leslye Headland had previously spoken about the journey she took to create The Acolyte which will focus on the Siths, their dark powers, and their emergence. She has said that she wants a diverse writers room that includes Star Wars fans and even people who have never watched a single Star Wars media.
Headland explained that having a diverse writers room will ensure that people don’t ‘yes, ma’am her’ or agree with everything she says. So right now The Acolyte is shaping up to be a series that will at least be on par with The Mandalorian. And if that’s the case then it will be top-tier entertainment at the very least.
Suffice to say we can’t wait to see it when it launches on Disney+