On a statement made yesterday on starwars.com, LucasFilm declared that in order to make way for the new Star Wars movies, the first of which is coming next year, they’re doing some cleaning of the franchise’s continuity so they don’t have to deal with all the existing stories that take place after Return of the Jedi.
Here are the most key snippets from the statement:
“While Lucasfilm always strived to keep the stories created for the EU consistent with our film and television content as well as internally consistent, Lucas always made it clear that he was not beholden to the EU. He set the films he created as the canon. This includes the six Star Wars episodes, and the many hours of content he developed and produced in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. These stories are the immovable objects of Star Wars history, the characters and events to which all other tales must align.
“Now, with an exciting future filled with new cinematic installments of Star Wars, all aspects of Star Wars storytelling moving forward will be connected. Under Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy’s direction, the company for the first time ever has formed a story group to oversee and coordinate all Star Wars creative development.”
“In order to give maximum creative freedom to the filmmakers and also preserve an element of surprise and discovery for the audience, Star Wars Episodes VII-IX will not tell the same story told in the post-Return of the Jedi Expanded Universe. While the universe that readers knew is changing, it is not being discarded. Creators of new Star Wars entertainment have full access to the rich content of the Expanded Universe.”
What this means for the piles of Star Wars games is mostly unclear — aside from the Jedi Knight series, none of them take place after Return of the Jedi, and LucasFilm is clearly not automatically erasing those things that don’t interfere with their new plans. The new canon does include the upcoming Star Wars Rebels animated show, which takes place around the same period as The force Unleashed between the movie trilogies so that series may be canceled out, but since only Post-Jedi stuff is specified as getting the canon axe there is reason to hope that the beloved Knights of the Old Republic games might stay in continuity since they take place millennia before even Yoda was born.
Plus, The Old Republic is still ongoing, and will be around for a few more years at least, and that game is part of the KOTOR saga and likely being incorporated into this new canon initiative given EA is the exclusive licensing partner for new Star Wars games at the moment. This statement does, however, give them the freedom to at any point decanonize KOTOR. But as of today it probably still counts.