Disney+ is partnering with Lego on a sequel to the infamous Star Wars product that was once called 'the worst thing on television ever.'

By James Hibberd
August 13, 2020 at 12:49 PM EDT
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Life Day lives!

Disney+ has announced a new Star Wars Holiday Special coming later this year to the streaming service. The company is partnering with Lego to create an adventure that follows up on the most infamous Star Wars product of all time: The 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special that aired once on CBS (and then was never aired on TV again, nor released on home video). The special is also billed as a sequel to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, bringing back fan-favorite characters.

LEGO/Lucasfilm

From the release: "The special will reunite Rey, Finn, Poe, Chewie, Rose and the droids for a joyous feast on Life Day, a holiday first introduced in the 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special. The new Lego special is the first to debut on Disney+ and will continue the rich legacy of collaboration between Lucasfilm and Lego — playful adventures told in the endearingly irreverent way that only Lego Star Wars cobranded content can."

LEGO/Lucasfilm

More details: "Directly following the events of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, Rey leaves her friends to prepare for Life Day as she sets off on a new adventure with BB-8 to gain a deeper knowledge of the Force. At a mysterious Jedi Temple, she is hurled into a cross-timeline adventure through beloved moments in Star Wars cinematic history, coming into contact with Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, Yoda, Obi-Wan and other iconic heroes and villains from all nine Skywalker saga films. But will she make it back in time for the Life Day feast and learn the true meaning of holiday spirit?"

The official voice cast has not yet been released. We're told that some (but not all) of the movie actors will be reprising their roles.

The original Star Wars Holiday Special came out after A New Hope and before The Empire Strikes Back, and mixed a half-baked Star Wars story line on Kashyyyk with the campy style of 1970s variety specials. Guest stars included prime-time TV guns-for-hire such as Art Carney, Diahann Carroll and Harvey Norman. Vice dubbed it "the worst thing on television ever." 

"The special from 1978 really didn't have much to do with us, you know,” Star Wars creator George Lucas said in a 2005 interview. “I can't remember what network it was on, but it was a thing that they did. We kind of let them do it. It was done by... I can't even remember who the group was, but they were variety TV guys. We let them use the characters and stuff and that probably wasn't the smartest thing to do, but you learn from those experiences.” Lucas also reportedly once said about the special, less zenlike: "If I had the time and a sledgehammer, I would track down every copy of that show and smash it.”

The special is known for introducing one cool element into the canon, however: The bounty hunter Boba Fett made his first appearance in the special, in animated form. And, of course, Boba Fett is the inspiration for Disney+’s The Mandalorian, which returns for its second season this fall.

Here's the opening of the original holiday special:

The special will debut Tuesday, Nov. 17.

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