The Correct Order for Viewing All the Star Wars Movies

Star Wars viewing order

I can’t believe it’s here. The end of the Skywalker Saga. Yep, with the release of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, the 42-year-old story has come to an end.

No worries, there are zero spoilers in this post.

I am absolutely loving the Star Wars references anywhere and everywhere I look. Clothes. Toys. Cereal. Even car commercials are getting in on it! The Force is definitely strong with the mainstream these days.

Yet the one thing that’s really starting to overtake my Facebook feed of late are people asking the same question over and over: “My kids haven’t seen Star Wars yet. What order should I show it to them in?”

I’ve seen this question before. So many people have asked about the proper Star Wars viewing order and I’m sure we’ll keep hearing it for a long, long time to come in galaxies near and far away.

I’m baffled by this question though. Seriously? Don’t people know how to count?

As a true Star Wars fan who’s been there since the very beginning (Okay, so I was only 5 when the original Star Wars was in theaters, but that still counts), I want to set the record straight.

ThereΒ is no debate. There is no arguing. There is only one way to watch all the Star Wars movies.

And the correct Star Wars viewing order is:

  1. Star Wars
  2. The Empire Strikes Back
  3. Return of the Jedi
  4. The Force Awakens
  5. The Last Jedi
  6. The Rise of Skywalker

That’s it.

Of course, when that’s done, you can toss in Rogue One for fun (great movie!), which leads right into the original Star Wars. Solo is also a fun one but not necessary for the main storyline. And all the various cartoons and TV series (Rebels, Clone Wars and The Mandalorian are all great) can be watched after as well. But for the main Skywalker Saga it couldn’t be any easier than starting at Episode IV and going in order straight to Episode IX.

If you hear rumors or rumblings about other Star Wars movies (like some prequels or something), just chalk it up to Jedi Mind Tricks. Those are not the movies you are looking for.

May the Force Be With You. Always.

Star Wars viewing order

Which is your favorite Star Wars movie?

 

167 thoughts on “The Correct Order for Viewing All the Star Wars Movies”

  1. Love this!! This is the order that we watch them in! I have always loved Star Wars…it’s so cool that now I have a baby boy that will watch it with me! Thanks for the awesome post!!

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  2. When I watch the movies, I watch them in the order the stories take place, not when they were released. I prefer the linear way of storytelling for these films.

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  3. I liked the “original” Star Wars. I wasn’t too keen on “Phantom Menace” or “Attack of the Clones.” I’m with you!! I did not have one “original” favorite. I’m waiting for “Force Awakens” on DVD. Thanks for your opinion and info. kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.

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  4. My hubby is a bigger fan of Star Wars, so I watch them because he loves them. My favorite is The Empire Strikes Back, seems I understood this one better πŸ™‚

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  5. HAHA! Omg! Bookedmarked this post! The comments and the actual post!
    I have watched the movies in so many orders..it probably doesnt matter anymore. lol
    I like them all πŸ™‚

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  6. I agree with you 100%. There is no reason at all (in my opinion) to see the prequels. Personally, I don’t believe they add anything to story – at all! Again, just my humble opinion but one only needs to see IV-VI to be “caught up” and then VII will make perfect sense. The relevant character backstories are fully contained in IV-VI.

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  7. That’s the order I watch them in whenever I feel like have a three day Star Wars marathon, and that’s the order my nephew and niece will be watching them… And at that point they won’t have a choice but to like them. I’m sending them subliminal messages right now ( buying them epic star wars toys and hot wheels) have you seen the hot wheels they have for this? They are awesome and I’m trying to collect them all, and I’m rambling sorry lol

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  8. I still can’t believe it’s been so long since Star Wars first came out. And I can’t believe that my mom threw away my star wars lunch box. its like throwing away solid gold.

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  9. The Very first Star Wars movie has always been my favorite ~ until i saw this new one β™₯ I have a new favorite β™₯ great movie β™₯ love BB-8 β™₯

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  10. Gotta say, the new one is my favorite!! we did a huge family event going to see it all together and that made it so fun.. I love the new characters and the actors who portray them.. John Boyega man. HE IS GREAT! Holy crap. And did you see Adam Driver on SNL? He has amazing range. AND Daisy Ridley is SO good too, she kicks butt. LOVE IT!

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  11. (The Correct Order for Viewing All the Star Wars Movies) I have three son’s that live in Wisconsin and they went to see the new Star Wars movie together. All three of them said it was a great movie to see and was well worth the wait-

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  12. Great post !!! My boys love Star Wars as I do as well ..we love to watch the movies i love them all my boys collect and play with many star wars items…

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  13. The first time I saw Star wars was at a drive-in…. I know that was a long time ago, and that is how I first saw it…LOL

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  14. The first time I saw star wars was at a drive -in theater , I know that was a long time ago… but that is how I saw it when it first came out……LOL

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  15. Star Wars is a total classic!! It just reminds of when I was young with no bills and no resposibility!! Oh God…can I go back there now??? Lol!

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  16. In case nobody understood my fav Star Wars movie pick – LOL – I truly love them all, they are each a favorite 4 different reasons, & I can’t really narrow it down to only just 1 of a really amazing, extraordinary, incredible, phenomenal & spectacular franchise & saga ever, of all time! However, I do really LOVE The Force Awakens, it is AWESOME & does honor to Star Wars!!

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  17. I’m not sure if my post a blog on my fav Star Wars character worked, so just FYI- it is Yoda, thou I luv them all!! I have seen ALL 7 Star Wars movies, The Force Awakens 4xs & the the other 6, hundreds of times!!! I love Star Wars & always will, my fav of all & the best ever!! P.S. I also luv Clone Wars & Rebels….

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  18. My favorite is the original Star Wars. I remember standing in line with friends to get into the theater. I was blown away from the very beginning.

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  19. Empire is still my favorite.. and been rewatching the movies with my daughter recently, and for just how had the prequels were! I think Phantom Menace may even be on on top 5 worst movies of all time!

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  20. I’m a marathon type girl. I say watch 1-6 and then Force Awakens! =)
    Return of the Jedi is my favourite! Long live the Ewok! I don’t care what anyone says, they are adorable! I first saw it as a little girl and I really wanted one as pet! lol =)

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  21. I would have no idea which order to watch them in. But you make it all so simple. I do have a little Yoda that hangs from my mirror that says wise things though.

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  22. I agree with your order. All the Star Wars movies are awesome because it has been something that my boys and I have in common and enjoyed watching together.

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  23. If I were to watch them all, I would marathon watch them from the beginning to end. I would start at the first one and go from there.. The prequels for me, werent that exciting (I hate to say) although they did answer some questions. I think they (writers) sat around and thought about previous versions, and did them. Back when the first came out I saw it maybe a dozen times. There is nothing that touched it, and never will be!

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  24. I found my original trilogy DVDs recently and wanted to rewatch before I saw TFA in theatres, but they ended up being the retouched cg versions and the wind was taken out of my sails very qhickly. Oh well..

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  25. I just spent the week with my nephew. I’m afraid my eyes started to glaze over with the indepth discussions of things I just didn’t have all the information to comprehend, including this topic.

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  26. As much as I’d live to agree with you, I can’t. I need the prequels. My order to watch is 4,5, 6, 1, 2, 3, Force Awakens.

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  27. My daughter loves Star Wars. We started watching all the movies(we have watched them more than I care to admit) with her last year to get her ready to watch the new one (which she has seen twice already).

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  28. I love this. My husband is a die hard Star Wars fan and I think he would whole heartedly agree. My kids have only seen those as well. I think my husband is afraid they will like jar jar binks :o)

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  29. I enjoyed them all. I have 3 boys and each 5 years apart. I’ve had to watch ever movies with them! My middle son over and over. I enjoyed the time spent watching each child have a different like, dislike or favourite character! We as a family, boys now 23, 18 and 13 saw the latest movie.. Time flies….. I’m missing the younger years ?

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  30. It is hard for me to say but I have not seen any of the movies from start to finish. We just go the first six and first snow storm we have i am going to sit and watch them. thanks

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  31. The first Star Wars (IV) is probably my favorite, all the narrative elements are there. But the Triumph medal ceremony at the end was unnecessary, merely an homage. Empire has the duel of Luke and Vader. Return has the showdown between Luke and the Emperor. Alec Guinness is simply the best,; he earned the Obi Wan role and made it his own.

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  32. I’ve never seen a complete Star Wars film. Shh…don’t tell. And don’t unfirned me, I’ll get around to them someday!

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  33. Hmmm… tough one. If we were talking Indy, I’d say that I heard a rumor that some Crystal Skull existed but that was just folklore. lol I actually did the all 7 movies marathon in the theater and rewatched them ALL. No skipping, no sleeping through them. ha, ha I actually enjoyed it. Though if I was going to have a newbie watch, I’d do OT first, then prequels, then FA.

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  34. You can’t leave out the content from the prequels. If you don’t get the back story of Anniken/Vader, you are missing out. I support machete order as a good way to watch the whole saga.

    IV, V, II, III, VI, VII

    Cheers,
    g33kdad

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  35. Empire Strikes back is my favorite! But the new movie was awesome! I can’t wait to see it again… for the 3rd time! πŸ˜€

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  36. I only watched the first one *o* but my kids love all of them!!
    I guess one day I will pop a big bag of popcorn and do a Star Wars Marathon!

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  37. Return of the Jedi is my favorite. As for the order to watch things in. the one thing that I’m sure of is that the original trilogy should definitely be watched first.

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  38. Not a fan of Star Wars-when my younger son was a child he forced me to watch all of them….I accompanied my fiance this past Sunday to see the latest one…the only think I liked was droid!

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  39. I agree with that order. I think my favourite is still the original Star Wars. I have watched it so many times and still love it. It’s great watching it now with my kids.

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  40. Also watched them in that same order right before watching Force Awakens. I think it works! I’m not sure if i’ll go back and watch the prequels now.

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  41. Recently I watched the original trilogy again a day before watching The Force Awakens. Then afterwards I proceeded to watch the prequels.

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  42. I grew up with the original episodes 4, 5, 6. But I also enjoyed episodes 1, 2, 3. I’m curious why you don’t like them or recommend watching them? Don’t they tell an important part of the story? Truly curious, I’m not really a Star Wars fanatic so I’d like opinions from those who are πŸ™‚

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  43. My favourite Star Wars movie would be The Force Awakens. I also think even if kids have not watched the other movies they would love the new one.

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  44. I love the new movie (I’ve seen it twice so far), and sadly I think Lucas lost his way for awhile there (ok, forever maybe).

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  45. I couldn’t agree more. Seen the new one, about to go see it for a 2nd time. That is a good indication of how I feel about it. It’s great. Has a similar look/feel to the originals. Momma & kids all happy!!

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  46. I agree, you have to get them hooked and Star Wars is the only way to do it. We didn’t watch them in chronological order and we’re good and addicted so definitely the ‘originals’ first.

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  47. One of my sons (an adult) is a huge Star Wars fan. Me I really enjoyed watching the ones I’ve seen and would enjoy watching them again. probably in chronological order to be able to understand the happenings a bit better. πŸ™‚

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  48. We just went to see the movie last night! It was awesome, of course. But we just discussed the order of the movies while driving back from the theater. So I had to google it and figure out the best order to watch them. So this list is very helpful, thank you! πŸ™‚

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  49. I’m not a huge Star Wars fan at all. I know it’s a big thing, and my husband is so geeked out about it. However, after seeing Episode VII, I want to see them all. I want to watch everything canonical Star Wars and be that gal that argues Dark Side versus Light Side. Thanks for your list, but I’ve got to see it all!

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  50. We are huge Star Wars fans too! My daughter is 8 and she loves EVERYTHING Star Wars. She is already counting down until the next movie!

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  51. I am not a fan of star wars lol. But my Husband and three boys are crazy. As soon as the new one came out they were all over it.

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  52. I have no clue as to the right order to watch. I think each stands on it’s own as pretty awesome. As I have yet to see The Force Awakens, I don’t have a favorite movie. I love Darth Maul’s double-bladed lightsaber, Yoda wisdom, Podracers (vrrrroooooooooooom) and the Village of those cute cheeky Wookies!

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  53. That’s right…show them in order! Return of the Jedi was my absolute favorite. Will see what the future brings as far as deciding if I like the new one best!

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  54. I agree with you. We recently showed Episodes IV, V and VI to our kids for the first time and saw VII at the theater. They’ll probably watch I, II and III at some point, but we’re not in a hurry. We’re excited to move forward in the series!.

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  55. I agree with you … the last 3 movies before The Force Awakens were so weak … however the only bright spot was that I got to meet Darth Maul (together with the Albino twins from the Matrix movies).

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  56. while i agree with you that the episode 1-3 weren’t great, i found them still to be of interest to my kids so They watched and enjoyed them

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  57. I agree that there is only one order for the movies. However, one of these days I want to watch the machete order (IV, V, II, III, VI), just for fun. We watched A New Hope on Monday, Empire Strikes Back on Tuesday, and my personal favorite Return of the Jedi will be viewed tonight (Wednesday) and then tomorrow (Thursday @ 7 PM) we finally get to see The Force Awakens!

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  58. On the news last night, it showed stars and fans lined up for days to view The Force Awakens in the original theater that showed Star Wars in 1977!!! I can’t wait!

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  59. I am an oldster, gosh I remember exactly when SW first came out. I saw it aa dozen times andd we thought the speccial effects were awesome. Nowdays thee efffects dont seem like much, but back then, they were state of the art.

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  60. Sorry, but no.

    Here is the order that we have taken with our kids.

    Star Wars
    The Empire Strikes Back
    Return of the Jedi
    Episode 1
    Episode 2
    The Clone Wars
    Episode 3
    Star Wars Rebels.
    The Force Awakens.

    In our house my daughter was first introduced to Star Wars through Star Wars rebels. She identified with Sabine Wren. And that is what pulled her into the whole franchise. Now she is reading Star Wars novels and she;s even going to get some more of them that I got from Disney Publishing (See image on my post connected through this post.)

    While I understand that the prequels are not everyone’s favorites but you know what, whatever brings people into the Star Wars universe is the correct way to view. All are welcome and fandom does not need to be justified in any way.

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