Ever since the death of Carrie Fisher, Star Wars fans have been wondering how Leia will be written out of the franchise, and the latest trailer for the new film suggests that she might be killed by Kylo Ren.
In the full theatrical trailer released on Oct. 9, Kylo Ren is seen piloting an X-Wing and targeting a Resistance ship. The editing heavily suggests that Leia is on that ship that Kylo is preparing to shoot down, and he says, “Let the past die. Kill it if you have to. That’s the only way to become what you were meant to be.” Kylo is then seeing hovering over the trigger while targeting Leia’s ship, but he begins to become emotional and hesitates. The trailer then cuts to the next scene and we don’t see what happens next.
After watching this trailer, the first reaction by many was that this is the scene in which Leia Organa will die, having been killed by her son Kylo Ren just as Han Solo was killed by him in The Force Awakens. But what are the chances that Leia actually does die in the movie?
Well, it would certainly be surprising considering multiple members of the Star Wars team have said that Leia was originally meant to be a bigger part of Star Wars: Episode IX. Mark Hamill said as much this past weekend, telling fans at Comic-Con that Leia was meant to be a part of the next film and also suggesting that her story won’t be closed in The Last Jedi.
“I know they’re going to try and find a way to close her story in [Episode] 9 that gives her the respect she deserves, because [Han Solo] was more prominent in [Episode] 7, Luke’s a little more prominent in [Episode] 8, and certainly Leia was meant to be more prominent in [Episode] 9,” Hamill said, according to The USA Today.
Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy previously said that Carrie Fisher would have gotten a lot more screen time in Episode IX.
“The minute she finished, she grabbed me and said, ‘I’d better be at the forefront of IX!’ Because Harrison was front and center on VII, and Mark is front and center on VIII,” Kennedy told Vanity Fair. “She thought IX would be her movie. And it would have been.”
In addition, the Star Wars crew has said that The Last Jedi was not altered at all after the death of Carrie Fisher, suggesting that they didn’t go back and re-edit the movie in order to write out Leia. This all suggests that Leia doesn’t actually die in the movie and that perhaps the scene in the trailer ends with Kylo not having it in him to kill his mom.
Another reason to believe that Leia doesn’t actually die in the scene teased in the trailer is the fact that Kylo Ren is wearing bandages in it, which suggests that it takes place towards the beginning of the movie. We know that Leia can’t die at the very beginning of the film, as she appears elsewhere even within this actual trailer.
It does appear that Leia will be a fairly significant part of The Last Jedi, getting a bigger role than she had in The Force Awakens. After all, in the new theatrical poster released on Monday night, Leia is placed front and center.
— Star Wars (@starwars) October 10, 2017
Star Wars: The Last Jedi will open in theaters on Dec. 15.