“Star Wars Episode IX” trailer is here

The first trailer for the highly-anticipated end to the Skywalker Saga is here, and it finally has a title: “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.” The teaser dropped Friday during a live panel hosted by Stephen Colbert, who spoke with director JJ Abrams and Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy at the Star Wars Celebration in Chicago.

The clip starts with Daisy Ridley’s character Rey, breathing heavily and standing on a desert planet — possibly be Jakku — where Rey is from and where she first met Finn — or Tatooine, Luke Skywalker’s home planet, which hasn’t yet appeared in the trilogy.

“We’ve passed on all we know,” Luke Skywalker narrates. “A thousand generations live in you now. But this is your fight.”

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It features a ton of major characters: Rey, Finn, Poe, Lando Calrissian, C-3PO, BB-8, Kylo Ren, Chewbacca, and an emotional shot of Princess Leia, played by the late Carrie Fisher. 

“Every generation has a legend,” the tagline reads before cutting to a shot of Rey epically jumping over a starfighter with her lightsaber. “The saga comes to an end.”

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Daisy Ridley as Rey. Disney

“We’ll always be with you,” Skywalker continues. “No one’s ever really gone,” he concludes. The trailer ends with an unmistakable laugh from a villain long thought dead: Emperor Palpatine. 

“It’s about this new generation, and what they’ve inherited — the light and the dark — and when facing the greatest evil, are they prepared, are they ready?” Abrams said during the panel, ahead of the trailer’s debut. 

Colbert dug into several aspects of the upcoming film, including Fisher’s role. “She was the greatest,” Abrams said of the late actress. “Every day, it hits me that she’s not here. But it’s so surreal, because we are working with her still. She’s so alive in scenes. Princess Leia lives in this film in a way that is kind of mind-blowing to me.” 

Will the film pick up exactly where the last one left off? “The movie doesn’t pick up immediately after the last film,” Abrams revealed. “Some time has gone by.”

The panel featured original cast members Anthony Daniels, who plays C-3PO and Billy dee Williams, who plays Lando Calrissian, as well as next generation cast members Daisy Ridley (Rey), John Boyega (Finn), Oscar Isaac (Poe), Kelly Marie Tran (Rose), Jones Suotamo (Chewbacca), Naomi Ackie (Jannah) and BB-8. 

Ackie — a new cast member — revealed her character’s name for the first time: Jana. “The original group are going on this epic, epic adventure together, and I am so excited about where Jana crosses paths with them,” she said. “It’s wicked.”

Other highlights from the panel include: 

  • Colbert asking Ackie if Calrissian is her character’s father in the film. She calls him a “charming man” before saying, “so he could have children all over the universe.” 
  • Boyega confirming his nemesis, Captain Phasma, played by Gwendoline Christie, is very much dead.
  • Boyega calling the romances of the film “a love pentagon.” 
  • Isaac speculating that Poe may be a better overall pilot than Han Solo.
  • Ridley saying, “The lightsaber that Rey inherited from Luke lives.” 
  • Ridley confirming that “there are no more semi-naked Kylos, unfortunately,” while Isaac joked, “Only fully-naked.” 
  • Suotamo joking that porgs taste best fried, after saying,”I have to show everyone, that no matter how big or small you are, there is a place for you in this world.” 
  • The introduction of BB-8’s new friend, D-O, a one-wheeled robot with a cone-like head. 

The film is the final in the latest “Star Wars” trilogy, following “The Force Awakens” and “The Last Jedi.” 

“It really has been a joy to be in these movies surrounded by amazing people,” Actor John Boyega tweeted after filming wrapped in February. “JJ thank you for making my dreams come true.” 

“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” hits theaters in December. 

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