Disney's new Star Wars empire may be rapidly expanding beyond the announced new trilogy.
Although word surfaced just last week that Lucasfilm had approached Lawrence Kasdan (The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi) and Simon Kinberg (X-Men: The Last Stand, Sherlock Holmes) to write Episodes VIII and IX -- Michael Arndt is already penning Episode VII -- a new report indicates the studio may have other plans for the duo.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, insiders contend that while Kasdan and Kinberg have been hired to work on the Star Wars franchise, they aren't necessarily writing installments of the new trilogy. Instead, they're tackling separate scripts that "could turn into official “Episodes” in the main Skywalker storyline, or they could form the basis for spinoffs focusing on side characters."
With Episode VII still a few years away, it may seem too soon to be thinking about spinoffs. However, Disney CEO Robert Iger expressed interest in a new Star Wars arriving every two to three years, making solo projects featuring new characters or secondary storylines a logical (and universe-expanding) choice.