Star Wars Watch Order Guide: Chronological & Theatrical Release Orders

Star Wars has a huge saga with all its movies and animated series. As a result of that, many newbies are confused as to how to watch it. Here’s our Star Wars watch order guide in which we explain the recommended watch orders.

As we all know, Star Wars has a whole lot of movies. What makes those movies confusing is that they are not released in a chronological order story-wise. That’s because George Lucas decided to film the movies right from the middle of the story, as there was not sufficient technology to produce the required visual effects for the stories that started the saga. As a result of that, we’re left with a messy storyline.

If that situation confuses you and you’re unsure about how to watch Star Wars, you can check out the recommended watch orders we explained below.

Star Wars Watch Order Guide

You can watch Star Wars with its chronological or theatrical release order. If you also want to watch the animated series and have a huge Star Wars marathon, you can check out the complete chronological order.

Star Wars Franchise Chronological Watch Order

If you want to watch everything in a chronological way, and don’t want to confuse yourself for the sake of a better visual experience, you should use chronological order. The movies are not consistent in terms of visual effects as their release dates are disorganized, but you’ll get a good sense of the story. Star Wars creator George Lucas also prefers that people watch the movies in this order.

  • Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace (It follows the events roughly 32 years before A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones (It follows the events roughly 22 years before A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith (It follows the events roughly 19 years before A New Hope.)
  • Solo: A Star Wars Story (It follows the events roughly 10 years before A New Hope.)
  • Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (It follows the events just before A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
  • Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (It follows the events roughly 3 years after A New Hope.) 
  • Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (It follows the events roughly 4 years after A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (It follows the events roughly 34 years after A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi (It follows the events roughly 34 years after A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker (It follows the events roughly 35 years after A New Hope.)

Theatrical Watch Order

Many Star Wars fans recommend watching the movies in the order they were released. This will give you a gradually improving visual experience, but the storyline will be confusing.

  • Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (1977)
  • Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
  • Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (1983)
  • Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace (1999)
  • Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones (2002)
  • Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith  (2005)
  • Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (2015)
  • Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)
  • Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi (2017)
  • Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018)
  • Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker (2019)

How does long take to watching the Star Wars franchise?

There are 11 originals live-action for Star Wars and will take you 25 hours and 7 minutes to watch it means you need at least two days with breaks. This count includes the nine episodes from the Skywalker saga and the two anthology series, Rogue One, and Solo.

But Episode I to Episode IX will take your time to watch for 20 hours and 39 minutes.

Star Wars Complete Chronological Watch Order

If you don’t want to stick with just the movies, check out how to watch the whole Star Wars saga with its animated series. Here’s the complete watch order for those who want to watch everything.

  • Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace (It follows the events roughly 32 years before A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones (It follows the events roughly 2 years before A New Hope.)
  • The Clone Wars Animated Series (It starts 22 years before A New Hope and ends 19 years before it.)
  • Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith (It follows the events roughly 19 years before A New Hope.)
  • Solo: A Star Wars Story (It follows the events roughly 10 years before A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars: Rebels Animated Series (It takes place five years before A New Hope, and contains an epilogue that is after it.)
  • Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (It follows the events just before A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
  • Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (It follows the events roughly 3 years after A New Hope.) 
  • Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (It follows the events roughly 4 years after A New Hope.)
  • The Mandalorian (It follows the events roughly 9 years after A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars: Resistance animated series (It follows the events roughly 34 years after A New Hope, and more.)
  • Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (It follows the events roughly 34 years after A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi (It follows the events roughly 34 years after A New Hope.)
  • Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker (It follows the events roughly 35 years after A New Hope.)

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