If you were one of the many sci-fi fans looking forward to the Star Wars franchise getting a Game of Thrones touch in the coming years, you are in for some bad news. Although David Benioff and D. B. Weiss were announced to produce their own Star Wars trilogy that would kick off in a couple years, the Game of Thrones showrunners quit Star Wars on Monday, Oct. 28, per Deadline. It is a totally shocking move, but Benioff and Weiss's reason for the unexpected decision actually makes sense.
At the start of 2018, Disney and Lucasfilm announced that Game of Thrones showrunners Benioff and Weiss would take the reins of the Star Wars franchise for the series' first post-Skywalker trilogy. Earlier this year, the studio revealed that Benioff and Weiss' three movies were scheduled to arrive in 2022, 2024, and 2026 — but that's not going to happen anymore.
A lot has changed for Benioff and Weiss since they were first announced as the new Star Wars creators. After the eighth and final season of Game of Thrones aired in the spring of 2019, they were met with an avalanche of backlash, as disappointed fans complained about drastic character arcs and misplaced coffee cups, and even called for a complete rewrite of the season.
And fans' dissent has not died down in the nearly six months since the series finale aired. Public outrage at the showrunners arose again just days before this Star Wars announcement, following comments they made at an Austin Film Festival panel. A Twitter thread recapping Benioff and Weiss' quotes during the panel went viral, as the social media site erupted over the duo candidly revealing they had no clue what they were doing when they began working on Game of Thrones.
With these recent comments at the front of every sci-fi fan's brain, it may be tempting to assume that Benioff and Weiss walked away from their Star Wars trilogy due to public backlash against them, but they revealed that the true reason for their decision was simply time management. Benioff and Weiss signed a major, all-inclusive deal with Netflix just a couple of months ago, and they said they need to focus on these Netflix projects rather than taking on Star Wars. They said in a joint statement to Deadline:
There are only so many hours in the day, and we felt we could not do justice to both Star Wars and our Netflix projects. So we are regretfully stepping away.
That does not mean Benioff and Weiss are totally done with all things Star Wars forever, though. Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy called the duo "incredible storytellers," and confirmed the studio is still interested in including them as creators in the film saga whenever they are able to find room in their schedules.
For now, Star Wars fans still have The Rise of Skywalker to look forward to at the end of 2019, as well as the new Disney+ series The Mandalorian, which is set to premiere in November. And as for that post-Skywalker trilogy that was scheduled for 2022... well, I'm pretty sure Lucasfilm won't have trouble finding other directors interested in helming the project.