The Mandalorian is set to return — but not as a TV series.

In a surprise, Lucasfilm announced today that the hit Disney+ show is being turned into a big-screen film. A press release said the projected is called The Mandalorian & GroguIt will be directed by series creator Jon Favreau and produced by Favreau, Kathleen Kennedy, and Dave Filoni. Production will supposedly begin some time in 2024.

Here was Favreau’s comment on the news:

I have loved telling stories set in the rich world that George Lucas created. The prospect of bringing the Mandalorian and his apprentice Grogu to the big screen is extremely exciting.

Lucasfilm also revealed the first piece of concept art from the movie:

Lucasfilm Ltd.

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Although Lucasfilm has several movies already in development — including one that is supposed to include Mando and Grogu — this project has never been announced publicly before. And it is clearly not the previously announced film that Mando (and Baby Yoda) were supposed to show up in; that movie is to be directed by Dave Filoni and also feature other recent Star Wars Disney+ heroes in a kind of Lucasfilm All-Stars crossover project. (Think The Avengers, but for Star Wars.)

In fact, the press release for The Mandalorian & Grogu specifically mentions that other project as a separate, still-in-development movie; it says this new movie will “lead Lucasfilm’s ongoing feature-development slate, which includes films helmed by Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, James Mangold and Dave Filoni.” The release also notes that a second season of Ahsoka is also in development.

(Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy’s Star Wars will supposedly feature Daisy Ridley’s Rey building a New Jedi Order after the events of The Rise of Skywalker; Mangold’s project is set in the earliest days of the Jedi.)

Mandalorian movie makes a ton of financial sense; the show is certainly the most popular and successful show that Star Wars has produced under the Disney+ banner. Kids love Mando and especially Grogu more than they’ve loved any Star Wars character in generations. And the move of the duo from TV to film would suggest that Disney under CEO Bob Iger has recognized that Star Wars could really use a theatrical hit and that deemphasizing theatrical releases in favor of streaming content is a very financially risky strategy.

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