Whether you loved the movie or hated it, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker has brought an end to one of the most popular movie sagas to ever grace the big screen. Star Wars has dominated the pop culture landscape for more than 40 years, and it’s strange to know that the Skywalker Saga is over.
There will be more Star Wars projects in the future, but where the franchise goes from here remains a mystery. Fans of this iteration of the saga will also miss seeing this ensemble cast in the one place, and it’s highly possible that none of them will reprise their roles down the line.
That said, there is life after Star Wars, and this talented cast of performers have other movies and TV shows lined up that deserve your attention. Let’s take a look at them.
The actress who plays Rey in the Star Wars saga has a stacked slate, with several enticing projects that range from dystopian science fiction to animated family fare.
Next up is Chaos Walking, the long-delayed Doug Liman-helmed adaptation of Patrick Ness’s The Knife of Never Letting Go. The story takes place on a seemingly all-male planet where citizens can see, hear, and read each other’s thoughts, which leads to a showdown between the humans and an alien race called the Spackle. Ridley will co-star alongside Tom Holland, and if the movie is successful, it could lead to the follow-up novels being brought to the screen as well.
Ridley will also lend her voice talent to next year’s Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway (April 3, 2020). She will reprise the role of Cotton-Tail and join an all-star cast that includes Margot Robbie, James Corden, Rose Byrne, Elizabeth Debicki, and fellow Star Wars alumnus, Domhall Gleeson. The first film is very sweet, and it will be nice to see (hear) Ridley in a breezy movie again.
Finally, the actress will star in two upcoming movies that were recently announced. The first, Kolma, is a fantasy drama about a widow who is given the chance to relive her first love before she dies. A Woman of No Importance, meanwhile, will see her play Virginia Hall, a spy who worked for the British Intelligence during World War II. The latter project sounds particularly exciting as Hall’s story is fascinating.
Boyega’s schedule is fairly light for the time being, but he’s earned some rest time after starring in one of the biggest movie trilogies of all time. However, he won’t be sitting idly by while his Star Wars co-stars explore new roles beyond the galaxy far, far away either.
His next movie is Naked Singularity, a crime drama from Chase Palmer, who most famously co-wrote the screenplay for 2017’s IT: Chapter One. The film follows a lawyer whose life starts to fall apart after he loses a major case. Bill Skarsgård, Olivia Cooke, Ed Skrein, and Tim Blake Nelson will feature alongside Boyega, and the movie should hit screens in 2020.
Elsewhere, the actor has a role in an episode of Small Axe, a drama that chronicles the lives of a group of friends living in London between 1968 and 2014. It’s clear that Boyega is pursuing roles that interest him, regardless of their scale, and avoiding the allure of tentpole blockbusters for now.
Last year, it was announced that Boyega and Letitia Wright will star in an adaptation of Katie Khan’s novel Hold Back the Stars, a sci-fi romance story that has been described as a cross between Romeo and Juliet and Gravity. At the time of this writing, news about the movie has been scarce, and it remains to be seen if it will ever enter production.
Hamill’s post-Star Wars life will see him return to another world that he’s popular in: animated superhero fare.
In Relatively Super, he’ll star alongside Kevin Conroy, who like Hamill, is a legendary figure in the world of animated Batman titles. This movie, however, will see both actors playing fathers to caped crusaders that have nothing to do with the heroes and villains of DC Comics.
The actor will also have a role in Invincible, a series based on the Image Comics property of the same name. The story follows a boy whose father is the most powerful superhero on the planet. Hamill’s character remains a mystery for now, but he will join a top-notch cast that includes Seth Rogen, Stephen Yuen, J.K. Simmons, Sandra Oh, and Walton Goggins. Amazon Prime subscribers will be able to watch this one in 2020.
Driver is one of the most exciting talents on the planet right now. He has a tendency to split his time between massive blockbusters and working with auteurs, so it’s unsurprising to know that his next two projects are totally different from each other.
The musical drama Annette tells the story of an edgy stand-up comedian (Driver) and his wife, a world-famous opera singer (Marion Cotillard), whose lives take an unexpected turn when they discover that their newborn daughter possesses a special gift.
Driver will also star alongside Star Wars‘ Jodie Comer, Ben Affleck, and Matt Damon in Ridley Scott’s The Last Duel. The movie is about a woman (Comer) who accuses her husband’s best friend (Damon) of raping her, which leads to a duel between the two men. That movie will hit theaters next December, just in time for the awards season.
Isaac is another actor who has forged a successful career for himself by starring in some very diverse roles, and his future will see him continue to appear in a host of varied movies.
In Denis Villeneuve’s Dune remake (due December 18, 2020), Isaac will be part of a strong ensemble that includes Rebecca Ferguson, Timothee Chalamet, Jason Momoa, Dave Bautista, Josh Brolin, and Zendaya. The story follows a young man who must travel to the most dangerous planet in the galaxy to protect his family and his people, which puts him into the path of some malevolent forces. It’s funny that Isaac is following Star Wars with this movie, as it has been described as “Star Wars for adults.”
After that, he’ll join Megan Fox and Andy Garcia in Big Gold Brick, a dark comedy about an aspiring writer hired to pen the biography of an enigmatic father of two. Isaac will play a character called Anselm, which appears to be a supporting role. Once again, this movie is further proof that Isaac is motivated by passion, as his star power is strong enough to lead entire movies these days. To accept a minor part in this one gives me confidence that the movie will make some noise.
Lastly, Isaac will team up with Paul Schrader for The Card Counter, in which he’ll play a gambler who tries to reform a young man driven by a desire for vengeance against a military colonel who wronged him in the past. Expect this movie to go to some dark places, but don’t be surprised if Isaac’s performance is a career-best.
Billy Dee Williams
Williams’s only future project is Star Wars: Detours, which has been on hiatus since 2013. The animated show — which is a collaboration between Robot Chicken and Lucasfilm — offers a comedic take on the Star Wars franchise, and while 39 episodes do exist, they have never been released to the public. Lucasfilm reportedly filed to renew the trademark last year, so perhaps the long-delayed show will make its way to Disney+ in the near future.
Ackie is a star on the rise, and following her performance as Jannah in The Rise of Skywalker, she’s well on her way to becoming a household name. However, she has no future projects on the horizon for the time being. The 28-year-old was supposed to star in the planned Game of Thrones prequel spinoff series, but the execs at HBO weren’t impressed with the pilot and decided to scrap the show.
Like Williams, the C-3PO actor is also set to appear in Star Wars: Detours whenever the show sees the light of day.
Kelly Marie Tran
Life after Rose will see Tran lend her voice to animated projects, one of which will see her work with Disney again. The move into family-focused fare is also a great move for Tran, as she’s an effortlessly likable performer who thrives in roles that match her friendly demeanor.
In the series Monsters At Work, she will play a character called Val Little in a story that takes place six months after the events of Monsters Inc. Expect to see the show on Disney+ next year.
Elsewhere, she’ll also star in The Croods 2 (due December 23, 2020), joining a cast that includes Ryan Reynolds, Nicolas Cage, and Emma Stone. The story will see the titular prehistoric family challenged by their neighbors to see who’s more evolved.
Now that McDiarmid has enjoyed his last hurrah as Palpatine, it remains to be seen what the Scottish actor will do next. McDiarmid has worked steadily through the years, though he’s lucky enough to be in a position where he can pick and choose the projects that ignite his passion. That said, now that this chapter of the Star Wars saga is over, he appears to be taking a break from the profession for the foreseeable future.
Here’s a fun fact: Suotamo’s only movie and TV work has had him playing Chewbacca. Now that the future of the Star Wars cinematic universe is uncertain, it might be a long time before he returns to the screen. The actor has no projects in the works at the moment, but the next time a movie, series, or video game calls for Chewie’s iconic roar, it’s highly likely that Suotamo will be there.
Richard E. Grant
Grant has been keeping himself busy in recent years, and his schedule will ensure that he’s a regular fixture on the big and small screen for the next year or so.
Up first is The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard (opening August 28, 2020), in which he will reprise the role of Seifert in the sequel to the 2017 action-comedy, The Hitman’s Bodyguard. If the movie is anything like the first, he’ll get to cut loose and have some fun.
Grant will also feature in Everybody’s Talking About Jamie (October 23, 2020), a British musical drama about a teenage boy who wants to be a drag queen. The movie is based on the stage show of the same name, and Grant will play the roles of Hugo Battersby and Loco Chanelle.
On the small screen, the actor will star in Dispatches from Elsewhere, which is due in 2020 and follows four people as they try to solve a mystery that opens up a world of endless possibilities and magic. The show also stars Andre Benjamin, Jason Segel, and Sally Field, which is an interesting ensemble to put together.
Finally, he will play the lead in Roger Donaldson’s The Guinea Pig Club, which follows a surgeon who risks his life and career to save pilots during World War II. Sam Neil and Jeremy Irvine round out the cast, but the movie is still in the early development stages. This seems like a very British movie, which makes Grant a perfect fit.
In addition to starring alongside the voice of Daisy Ridley in Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway, Gleeson will also have a supporting role in Run, a TV series about two lovers who forge a plan to run away together and disappear. Other than those projects, Gleeson’s future schedule is pretty light, which suggests he’s chilling out for a minute as he’s usually a very busy and in-demand performer.
With roles in Us, Little Monsters, and The Rise of Skywalker, it goes without saying that 2019 has been a pretty great year for Nyong’o. The next two also promise to be big for the actress, as she has a couple of projects lined up that look interesting.
Americanah, which arrives in 2020, will see Nyong’o play a Nigerian immigrant who moves to the United States to attend a university. The 10-episode miniseries will air on HBO Max, so make sure you order a subscription to see what will likely be another critically acclaimed original program for the network. The book that the show is based on won several awards and earned heaps of praise from critics and readers, so this one is worth keeping an eye out for.
The actress will also be waxing her action muscles, as she’s set to team up with Jessica Chastain, Diane Kruger, and Penelope Cruz in 355, a spy thriller that follows a diverse all-female team of international agents. The movie will hit theaters on January 15, 2021.
The American Horror Story and Booksmart star — and daughter of Carrie Fisher — is keeping tight-lipped about her next project, but she will be starring in a miniseries that’s currently being penned by Ryan Murphy. The writer has described the show as “a testament to her talent,” but he’s not spilling any beans about what viewers can expect just yet. Of course, given that Murphy is the mastermind behind AHS and Glee, the mystery show is destined to become very successful whenever it hits the small screen.
Monaghan will be among the supporting players in next year’s actioner Waldo, based on the novel Last Looks by Howard Gould. The movie stars Charlie Hunnam as a disgraced LAPD detective whose quiet life in the woods comes to an end when he is hired to investigate the death of an eccentric TV star’s wife. Mel Gibson and Clancy Brown round out the main cast.
The actor is also currently filming Rajah, an adventure movie about Sir James Brooke, the British crusader who became King of Sarawak in the 1840s and embarked on a lifelong quest to end piracy and head-hunting. Monaghan’s role has yet to be specified, but he will appear alongside Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Ralph Ineson.
Grunberg’s next project is a sci-fi comedy that could be off-putting to some of the more die-hard fanatics of the Star Wars franchise, as it also features Star Trek’s Wil Wheaton. Max Reload and the Nether Blasters is about a store clerk who unwittingly unleashes the forces of evil from a cursed video game, and it’s up to the everyman employee to save the day.
The actor also has a role in Hombre, a Showtime series that centers on a Mexican-American family man who is living undocumented in the United States. However, when his wife gets detained by ICE, he goes to unprecedented lengths to get her back.
Grunberg isn’t the most well-known actor from the Star Wars franchise, but he’s always a welcome and reliable presence whenever he shows up in movies and TV series.
Comer’s The Rise of Skywalker cameo marked her first major foray into feature films, and she will continue appearing on the big screen going forward as she has two movies hitting theaters in 2020.
As I discussed earlier, she has a major part in The Last Duel, in which she plays the wife whose alleged rape leads to her husband and his best friend fighting to the death. Being a central component of a Ridley Scott movie is no small feat, so chances are her stock will soar after this one.
In lighter fare, she will co-star with Ryan Reynolds and Taika Waititi in Free Guy, an action-comedy about a bank teller who realizes that he’s living in an open-world video game. That opens theatrically on July 3, 2020.
Fans of Comer’s work in Killing Eve will also be pleased to know that she’ll reprise her role in the show next year.
Howle is another rising star, having featured in such movies as Dunkirk and Outlaw King. He’s very good in The Seagull, On Chesil Beach, and MotherFatherSon. He just needs a breakthrough starring role to really put him on the international map. His next project is a BBC series called The Serpent, which is a crime saga chronicling the manhunt of the fraudster, con man, and serial killer Charles Sobhraj. Howle has been cast as Herman Knippenberg, a Dutch embassy diplomat tasked with investigating the murders.
Even at the age of 77, Ford shows no signs of slowing down. His next movie, The Call of the Wild, will be released on February 21, 2020, but the star of the show is a dog that gets stolen by freight haulers and is subsequently forced to navigate the Alaskan wild. That said, the human cast also features Karen Gillan and Dan Stevens, so that alone makes this one worth seeing.
The legendary actor will also star in his own TV series. The Staircase, based on the popular documentary series of the same name, sees him play a grieving man accused of murdering his wife after she falls down a flight of stairs. The show is still in the early development stages, and Ford is the only name currently attached to the project.
Of course, Ford is also set for one last outing as Indiana Jones in 2021. Little is known about the movie at the time of this writing, but Steven Spielberg is on board to direct the adventure blockbuster, which is rumored to be based on one of the franchise’s novels.
Russell is exchanging the galaxy far, far away for a creepy town in Oregon, as she’s set to play the main character in Antlers, a creature feature that Guillermo del Toro produced. The film, which opens on April 17, 2020, follows a school teacher and her brother (Jesse Plemons) as they team up to get to the bottom of a mystery involving a high school student with a dark family secret.
Russell hasn’t starred in a horror movie since the underrated Dark Skies, but her work in The Americans is proof that she excels in roles that demand some intensity. This movie could be one of the best fright flicks of 2020.