Disney's Mandalorian documentary is the distraction Star Wars fans need
Documentary filmmaking is a complicated profession...
Imagine sitting at a table with your favorite directors and talking about Star Wars. You don't ask them for clues about their next big project because you're also a bigshot director with your own Hollywood secrets. Instead, you take turns telling fun, insignificant stories. That's Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian, a documentary series premiering May 4 on Disney+.
The Mandalorian documentary won't reveal what's coming next in Season 2. It might not even reveal anything you didn't know about Season 1, but you'll have a nice time hanging out with some of your favorite people working onscreen and behind the scenes in the Star Wars universe.
Split into eight weekly episodes focused on specific topics, each installment of this Mandalorian documentary will appeal to different types of fans. Episode 1 focuses on the various directors and includes a roundtable discussion with Jon Favreau, Dave Filoni, Deborah Chow, Rick Famuyiwa, Bryce Dallas Howard, and Taika Waititi. It's fascinating to see these people just interact, even if their short vignettes don't reveal much about their individual approaches to the show (Waititi is good at action and comedy, Howard had the hardest episode to direct, etc).
What's more interesting is just hanging out with these people. Episode 1 devotes what feels like a good five minutes to Dave Filoni telling the story of how he first met George Lucas, starting with a phone call he thought was a prank and ending with a surreal job interview. That story is more captivating than anything the documentary reveals about The Mandalorian.
Episode 2, meanwhile, focuses on the legacy of Star Wars and what it means to the team behind The Mandalorian. Again, it's fun to hang with this crew and talk about a galaxy far, far away. But if you were hoping for Baby Yoda secrets or more insight into "The Way" then you've come to the wrong place.
These first two episodes are much more focused on looking back than forward, and while's it possible that might change as the series progresses, it makes for a somewhat predictable viewing experience. I could listen to Dave Filoni reminisce about George Lucas all day, but more casual fans might find themselves tuning out pretty quickly.
With future episodes set to dissect the cast, music, practical effects, and how The Mandalorian changed filmmaking technology, there's plenty to look forward to. Just seeing how the CGI worked in behind-the-scenes footage is incredible, but an episode focused on that tech should be a highlight.
None of it will scratch your itch for new episodes of the show itself. For that, you'll have to wait until October when The Mandalorian Season 2 begins, but this is a pretty good placeholder for now.
Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian premieres May 4 on Disney+.