The Force and Fandom was strong with Episode IX after Disney released the movie’s first teaser trailer yesterday (April 12).
The trailer, lasting just over two minutes, gives us our first look at the final installment of the franchise’s third trilogy and first under the Disney banner. Showing us the heroes and villains we have gotten to know since Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
However, while the opening scene of lead character Rey (Daisy Ridley) performing an impressive feat of action against her unknown foe’s ship seems to be the focal point of this teaser, it is the ending voice over of a familiar sinister laugh that had loyal fans who have followed the franchise for almost 42 years in a frenzy.
Playing over a simple black screen is the evil cackle of Emperor Palpatine, who was one of two main villains in the original trilogy, along with Darth Vader, and whose origins were explored in the prequel trilogy. Palpatine’s fate was presumably sealed in 1983’s Return of the Jedi when his apprentice Darth Vader, formerly known as Anakin Skywalker, defied his master’s torture of his son Luke and seemingly killed him by throwing him down a tunnel in the later destroyed death star.
However, as the last shot shown in this teaser is of Rey and the rest of our heroes approaching the remains of the aforementioned destroyed death star which is followed by the Emperor’s villainous laugh, it does seem as if Palpatine has somehow been resurrected. Whether this resurrection takes place during the upcoming movie or, as with Darth Maul in 2017’s Solo: A Star Wars Story, this will play out as something that occurred in an tie-in animated series or comic-book remains to be seen.
Original actor Ian McDiarmid has been revealed as a cast member for the upcoming movie coinciding with this teaser trailer and fans are excited to see exactly what happens with the character.
The title of Episode IX was also revealed with this teaser, in true Star Wars fashion, the closing shot was of the Star Wars logo expanding to reveal the title The Rise of Skywalker.
Fans have long suspected that main character Rey is tied to the Skywalker family in some way and that she and Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) are somehow related. The question remains though whether or not this title reveal means Rey will be revealed as a Skywalker, and even Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill)’s daughter, or if the movie will change gears and focus on Kylo Ren otherwise known as Ben Solo and the son of Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Luke’s sister General Leia (Carrie Fisher).
Other highlights of the trailer was seeing Billy Dee Williams return as Lando Calrissian 36 years after his last live-action appearance in Return of the Jedi. Lando has recently been portrayed in his earlier years by Donald Glover in Solo: A Star Wars Story with mixed responses by both fans and critics, so to see Williams return to the role should be a welcome nostalgia tour for fans
Star Wars remains one of the most popular and notable franchises in fandom with 42 years of history spanning three movie trilogies, four television serials, and numerous tie-in comic-books and novels.
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Directed by Rian Johnson, Star Wars: The Last Jedi stars Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels, Gwendoline Christie, and Frank Oz. Check out the synopsis below:
“Luke Skywalker’s peaceful and solitary existence gets upended when he encounters Rey, a young woman who shows strong signs of the Force. Her desire to learn the ways of the Jedi forces Luke to make a decision that changes their lives forever. Meanwhile, Kylo Ren and General Hux lead the First Order in an all-out assault against Leia and the Resistance for supremacy of the galaxy.”
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is now available on Digital, Blu-ray, and DVD, while Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker is set to release in theaters on December 20th, 2019.