Jon Favreau to Pen Live-Action ‘Star Wars’ Streaming Series


Jon Favreau has directed several films from Walt Disney Studios, including “Iron Man” and “The Jungle Book.”

Jordan Strauss/Invision, via Jordan Strauss, via Invision, via Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — Disney has turned to one of its favorite filmmakers, Jon Favreau, to produce and write a live-action “Star Wars” television series for its upcoming streaming service.

Lucasfilm, the Disney-owned “Star Wars” studio, has long used television to expand its galactic storytelling, but all of its previous efforts have been animated. That includes “Star Wars Rebels,” which began in 2014 and runs on the Disney XD cable network.

Disney and Lucasfilm offered no additional details about the untitled project in its announcement on Thursday, although Kathleen Kennedy, the president of Lucasfilm, noted in a statement that Mr. Favreau has a “fluency” with the “Star Wars” universe. Mr. Favreau, for instance, has a role as an actor in “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” set for release on May 25, and provided the voice for the Mandalorian warrior Pre Vizsla in the now-defunct Cartoon Network series “Star Wars: The Clone Wars.”

Though familiar to audiences from his acting, Mr. Favreau has found big success as a director. His credits for Walt Disney Studios include “Iron Man,” “The Jungle Book” and a live-action version of “The Lion King,” which is scheduled for release next year.

The live-action “Star Wars” series, first disclosed by Disney in November, is part of the company’s ambitious effort to join the Netflix-driven streaming boom. Disney will introduce an ESPN-branded streaming service later this year called ESPN Plus that will cost $4.99 a month. Late next year the company will roll out a Disney-branded platform (no pricing or name has yet been announced) that will feature movies from Walt Disney Studios, which includes the Marvel, Pixar and Lucasfilm labels, as well as original series like the one Mr. Favreau is developing.

Other series in the works for the service include a “Monsters Inc” spinoff and a new “High School Musical” chapter. Disney has also said it is making up to five original, live-action, Disney-branded movies for exclusive distribution on the digital platform.

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