The Acolyte is a "similar" mystery to Russian Doll’s "spiral of storytelling" – with nods to pretty much every Star Wars era

The Acolyte
(Image credit: Lucasfilm)

The Acolyte is the latest in a long line of Star Wars shows set to hit Disney Plus. but it's shaping up to be very different to the likes of The Mandalorian and Ahsoka

Set 100 years before the events of The Phantom Menace, it's set to introduce a new live-action era in a galaxy far, far away, while simultaneously diving into a mystery that takes a similar drip-feed approach to series creator Leslye Headland's acclaimed time-loop Netflix series Russian Doll.

"The Acolyte is a mystery. It’s similar to Russian Doll, which was really about giving the audience information episode by episode, this spiral of storytelling," Headland tells Total Film in our new issue out on Thursday April 25, which features Furiosa on the cover. 

"This is a much larger landscape, but it similarly tackles the idea of 'your eyes can deceive you'. You’re going to think the show is one thing, but then it’s going to gearshift into something else, and then do it again."

The mystery in question sees crime spree investigated by Jedi Master Sol (Lee Jung-jae) and Mae (Amandla Stenberg) which, in turn, leads them on a collision course with more sinister forces.

While the premise feels slightly un-Star Wars, Headland promises that The Acolyte will be "packed" with nods to essentially every era.

"It’s a show packed with everything I wanted to explore: I wanted EU [Expanded Universe] stuff in there, references to the original trilogy, The Phantom Menace, the Disney sequels… it’s absolutely packed. Because you never know, you may not get the chance again."

Headland adds, "[Cinematographer] Chris [Teague] and I talked a lot about honoring George Lucas’ camera moves. I would say the original trilogy became our touchpoint for how to craft the world, while the Episode I-ness of the show is a bit more thematic."

The first two episodes of The Acolyte are released on Disney Plus on June 4, with new episodes weekly. And you can read more about it and a whole lot else besides in the new issue of Total Film when it hits shelves and digital newsstands on Thursday, April 25.

Check out the covers below:

Total Film's Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga covers

(Image credit: Total Film/Warner Bros)

Pre-order the issue here to bag your copy, or click here to subscribe to Total Film and never miss another exclusive. You’ll get every issue before it's in stores, and you’ll get subscriber-exclusive covers. 

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(Image credit: Total Film/Warner Bros/Universal/Amazon)
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