NB: The following contains a spoiler for Star Wars: The Force Awakens if you haven’t seen it yet.
Not for the first time, The Force Awakens left a Star Wars film on a cliffhanger. You may remember the fateful moment where Rey approached a hooded Luke Skywalker, now a much older Jedi than the last time we saw him in Return Of The Jedi. As Rey held out Luke’s old lightsaber, the scene was tailor-made for fan debate and theorising. Could Luke really be Rey’s father? What could his ambiguous expression possibly mean?
It’s possible we’ll get the answer to at least one of those questions in The Last Jedi, this year’s sequel directed by Looper’s Rian Johnson. As Lucasfilm readies itself for the marketing drive that’s sure to kick in any month now, Disney boss Bob Iger has broken the film’s secrecy to show some footage to the company’s shareholders.
Inevitably, that footage was for their eyes only, but Los Angeles Times reporter Daniel Miller was in the room at the time, and managed to smuggle out a few details from the screening. According to his small series of tweets, the clip picked up where The Force Awakens left off – Rey approaching Luke, lightsaber held in her outstretched hand.
As a result, they got to hear Luke’s first line in the new Star Wars trilogy, which, according to Miller, is this:
“Who are you?”
The footage then showed Rey “deftly handle” the lightsaber before handing it over to Luke. After that tiny snippet, the viewers were then apparently shown a montage of other bits from The Last Jedi, since Miller mentions sightings of Chewbacca, General Leia and Finn, as well as “exotic” locations including oceans, forests, mountains and deserts.
The main take-away, though, is that “Who are you” line. Funnily enough, those are the very same three words that opened the first full trailer for The Force Awakens. They appeared to be uttered by Maz Kanata there, since they were spoken off-screen; Rey’s response, also off-camera, was “I’m no one.”
Since marketing departments seldom release stuff without some kind of underlying plan, it seems logical to conclude that the secret of Rey’s identity will be front and centre in The Last Jedi.
After months of speculation, it looks as though Star Wars: The Last Jedi will be finally giving us some answers when it emerges this December.
More news on this as we get it.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi – new behind the scenes pic
The latest production snap from Star Wars: The Last Jedi, as we now know it, is actually a glimpse into the editing suite for the movie. Director Rian Johnson posted the new image to his Instagram account, with the new title for the movie being dropped into the opening title crawl for the movie. And as you can see, R2-D2 was on hand to watch the work being undertaken.
We’re expecting the first trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi this side of Easter. We’ll keep you posted…
Here’s the poster for the film that was released at the start of the week…
Previously, Rian Johnson spoke to USA Today about the film and how it will help flesh out many of the saga’s new characters.
“I wanted to know more about each of them, and that doesn’t just mean information or backstory,” Johnson said. “Figure out what’s the most difficult thing each of them could be challenged with now – let’s throw that at them and dig into what really makes them tick by seeing how they handle that.”
Rey’s relationship with Luke will be a focal point in particular. Johnson described Rey’s first meeting with the legendary Jedi Master, saying that the young hero finds herself “both not knowing what’s going to happen and also having a lot of expectations in her head about how this is going to go. It very much feels like what we all go through in adolescence, the dawning of this new chapter of our lives.”
In fact, while Rey remains the protagonist of the Sequel Trilogy, Episode VIII will once again focus on the mystery of Luke Skywalker.
“What’s going on with Luke Skywalker?” is the main question in the new movie, according to Johnson. “I’m approaching it with a take that I hope feels honest and real and is going to be interesting to folks and make sense.”
We also want to know a lot more about the first Jedi Temple on Ahch-To and why Luke would choose that place specifically for his exile. The movie will hopefully also reveal more about the young Jedi he was training before the Knights of Ren slaughtered them all.
But for all of the darker elements of the film, Johnson still plans to keep things light when possible. Humour, of course, is a vital part of any Star Wars movie. The Empire Strikes Back and Rogue One are two of the darkest films in the franchise, but they still manage to make you laugh throughout the adventure.
“I want [Episode VIII] to be a blast and to be funny and to be a ride the way The Force Awakens and the original Star Wars movies were.”
Johnson also briefly teased that the film already has a title, and has had one since he first started working on the script. “It was in the very first draft I wrote,” Johnson said of the mystery title.
Unfortunately, he’s still not ready to share it with the world.
“All in good time, my friend,” Johnson said.
There’s no doubt we’ll learn way more about Episode VIII in the coming weeks, as Star Wars Celebration 2017 gets closer. We expect the first teaser to premiere at that convention, too…
All the Star Wars: Episode VIII news as we hear it, of course. In the meantime, feel free to flick over to the rest of our collected intel on page 2 and 3 here.
Star Wars: Episode VIII release date
Star Wars: Episode VIII will reach cinemas on December 15th 2017, having been pushed back seven months from its original earmarked release date of May 26th 2017.