The Game of Thrones showrunners are leaving a galaxy far, far away.
The Emmy-winning duo is pulling out of their deal with Lucasfilm to launch the next saga, the first film for which was previously announced to arrive in theaters in 2022. Deadline first announced the scoop which was confirmed by EW Monday night.
Lucasfilm announced Benioff and Weiss were developing a new Star Wars trilogy in February 2018. In August, the duo scored an exclusive multi-year deal to develop programming for Netflix estimated to be worth at least $200 million. A time crunch with their Netflix commitments is said to be the reason the writer-producers have to step aside from Star Wars.
“We love Star Wars,” Benioff and Weiss said in a statement. “When George Lucas built it, he built us too. Getting to talk about Star Wars with him and the current Star Wars team was the thrill of a lifetime, and we will always be indebted to the saga that changed everything. 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.”
The move is the latest shakeup at Lucasfilm, which has seen its share of creative upheavals among the Star Wars franchise in recent years.
“David Benioff and Dan Weiss are incredible storytellers,” Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy said in a statement. “We hope to include them in the journey forward when they are able to step away from their busy schedule to focus on Star Wars.”
The news comes on the heels of a September announcement that Marvel chief Kevin Feige is developing a Star Wars film. The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson has long been developing a trilogy of Star Wars films as well.
The final Skywalker Saga film, The Rise of Skywalker, opens in theaters Dec. 20. Lucasfilm also has the upcoming live-action Star Wars series The Mandalorian coming to Disney on Nov. 12. And there are other projects in development such as an Obi-Wan Kenobi series starring Ewan McGregor and a Rogue One prequel starring Diego Luna.