Disney and Lucasfilm’s newest Star Wars story has arrived in the form of a short animated episode. Titled “Sands of Jakku,” this is the first episode in Disney’s Star Wars Forces of Destiny, a series of original animated shorts set in a galaxy far, far away and focusing on the franchise’s roster of female heroes.
“Sands of Jakku” covers a moment not seen in The Force Awakens, as Rey (voiced by Daisy Ridley) and BB-8 must escape a ravenous, metal-craving Nightwatcher worm (which keen-eyed film viewers briefly spotted early on in the film) on their way to Niima Outpost — the place where they eventually meet Finn.
Lucasfilm Animation has produced an initial run of 16 shorts, and they will arrive daily on Disney’s YouTube channel ahead of their broadcast premier on the Disney Channel on July 9th. Future episodes will center on Princess Leia, Padmé Amidala, Rogue One‘s Jyn Erso, The Clone Wars fan favorite Ahsoka Tano, and Sabine Wren from Star Wars Rebels, with each installment narrated by Maz Kanata and featuring John Williams’s seminal soundtrack.
All of the episodes will be considered canonical to the Star Wars universe, with some riffing on story lines ultimately cut from the movies. For example, “Beasts of Echo Base” riffs on deleted scenes from The Empire Strikes Back and finds Leia, Chewbacca, R2-D2, and C-3PO trying to prevent a Wampa incursion at the Rebel headquarters on Hoth.