As the release of Star Wars: The Last Jedi approaches, major pieces of news about the galaxy far, far away are continuing to break. Most recently, Lucasfilm has announced several new Star Wars projects. Plus, there have been some leaks and interviews that are highly informative. And someone even managed to find the Millennium Falcon on Google Maps.
Here’s a look at some of the most recent pieces of Star Wars news.
1. Star Wars Battlefront II sets up what could be a key plot point in The Last Jedi
Some Star Wars Battlefront II spoilers are beginning to hit the internet ahead of its release. One concerns a level in the game with Luke Skywalker, with footage of it being uploaded to YouTube. Luke travels to Pillio in the game and uncovers a vault full of items that belonged to Emperor Palpatine. He soon comes across a compass, which he seems to have been looking for. He also suggests that it has some value.
A Funko toy connected to The Last Jedi shows Luke with this same compass. It was also mentioned in the recent book The Legends of Luke Skywalker. The compass must be significant since Lucasfilm included it in two pieces of canon material in the past month. Making Star Wars reported a rumor back in May that Luke has an important compass in The Last Jedi. Fans are now speculating that the compass perhaps leads to places strong in the Force and that Luke used this to find the first Jedi temple.
In footage we’ve seen from The Last Jedi, Rey is seen diving into water and later climbing out seemingly holding something. We also know from promotional materials that Luke’s X-Wing is submerged in water. This leads some fans to believe that Rey at some point retrieves this compass from Luke’s X-Wing.
2. Rian Johnson’s new trilogy could be about the Unknown Regions
The big Star Wars news of late is Rian Johnson being hired to work on a new trilogy. Lucasfilm says that Johnson will “introduce new characters from a corner of the galaxy that Star Wars lore has never before explored.” They also note that these movies will be separate from the Skywalker saga.
So what will Johnson’s trilogy be about? One of the most popular theories is that it will take place in the Unknown Regions. This is an uncharted area of the galaxy that is difficult to get to and that has virtually no relationship with the main Star Wars galaxy. By setting the film here, Johnson would have complete freedom, not needing to tie anything into the main saga.
Lucasfilm specifically notes that the movie will introduce a corner of the galaxy that has never before been explored. The Unknown Regions have literally not been explored, so this would make sense. Canon novels have also hinted that there’s an evil presence there, which is clearly meant to set up something.
Other fans think that Johnson’s movies will be a spinoff of something introduced in The Last Jedi. Perhaps there’s some concept that he came up with during production of the new movie, and he pitched Lucasfilm on the idea of a trilogy exploring it. It seems that Luke has discovered some information about the history of the Jedi, for example. So Johnson’s trilogy could be a prequel about this history that’s discussed in the movie. Nobody knows much else yet, but presumably, we’ll learn more about the trilogy in the coming months.
However, this hiring seems to confirm the rumors that Lucasfilm is very happy with The Last Jedi. Making Star Wars recently reported as much, saying, “I hear they’re extremely pleased.”
3. There’s no immaculate conception in The Last Jedi
In a recent interview, Daisy Ridley put one popular fan theory to rest. She noted that there is not a character in The Last Jedi who is immaculately conceived. There were some rumors that this is true of Rey, with her being born of the Force without having a father. Of course, that’s not unprecedented in Star Wars, as Anakin Skywalker himself was immaculately conceived. But Ridley in this interview seems to confirm that Rey does have a mother and a father.
In addition, Ridley appeared to confirm that there is no time travel in the movie. She said that she recently had a coworker explain a complicated theory involving time travel to her, and she flat out debunked it. Technically, Ridley is only confirming here that this specific theory is not true. But based on the way she shares this anecdote, it sure sounds like nothing similar happens in The Last Jedi.
Ridley also emphasizes how confused she was listening to the theory, which might imply that Rey’s origins in The Last Jedi are relatively straightforward and not something overly complicated.
4. Mark Hamill keeps suggesting Luke isn’t evil in The Last Jedi
— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) November 1, 2017
It once seemed like a very real possibility that Luke could turn to the Dark Side in The Last Jedi. But now, that’s seeming less and less likely based on what Mark Hamill has been saying. On Twitter, Hamill keeps making fun of people who are reading into things as evidence of an evil Luke.
For instance, when the official poster for The Last Jedi came out, a lot of fans observed that Luke is looming over everyone like Darth Vader in the posters for the original trilogy. But then Hamill was quick to point out a poster showing Rey looming over everyone as if to say the original theories were bogus.
Plus, Hamill outright said in a recent interview that Luke is not evil in The Last Jedi. “In Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Luke has lost confidence in his ability to make good choices,” Hamill said. “It haunts him to the core. But he hasn’t gone to the Dark side. This isn’t an evil version of him.”
Granted, this is only confirmation that Luke is not evil when Rey meets him on Ahch-To. It doesn’t debunk the idea that Luke could turn evil during the events of The Last Jedi. That definitely no longer seems like a strong possibility, though.
5. Someone found the Millennium Falcon on Google Maps
— Kevin Beaumont (@GossiTheDog) November 9, 2017
Lucasfilm is notoriously secretive throughout the production of Star Wars movies. But the one thing they can’t hide from is Google Maps. Kevin Beaumont recently shared an image on Twitter of the Millennium Falcon at Longcross Studios in England.
If you’re skeptical about this and think it could be a Twitter hoax, you can check for yourself. Just go to Google Maps and type in “Longcross Studios.” Then, scroll to the right, and look below Chobham Lane and above the Barrow Hills Golf Club. Right there in the open, you’ll see the Falcon in all its glory.
Much of the production of the Star Wars films takes place at Pinewood Studios in London, but some work on The Last Jedi was done at Longcross Studios, which is just about 40 minutes away. Obviously, seeing the Falcon on Google Maps isn’t really a significant leak. But it’s still fun to get a behind-the-scenes peek into the production of the movie through a very unexpected place.
6. Luke Skywalker’s necklace could be significant
Many characters in The Last Jedi wear jewelry at the request of Carrie Fisher. But it seems that Luke’s may be particularly important. A fan on Reddit recently pointed out that one of the official Luke figures includes a necklace that looks a lot like a kyber crystal.
Kyber crystals are what Jedi use to construct their lightsabers, and there were previously some rumors that Rouge One emphasized kyber crystals in order to set the stage for future Star Wars stories. Because Luke’s necklace is red, a lot of fans believe that he’s wearing the crystal from Darth Vader’s lightsaber. Granted, Vader’s lightsaber did fall into the Death Star at the end of Return of the Jedi. But Luke’s lightsaber also fell on Cloud City and yet was somehow recovered.
Another theory is that the crystal is actually from Luke’s own lightsaber. The idea is that Kylo attempted to steal the crystal from Luke’s lightsaber but cracked it in half during the process. We already know that Kylo’s lightsaber is powered by a cracked kyber crystal, and we know that kyber crystals can “bleed” and that this is what causes them to turn red. So perhaps Luke keeps his cracked crystal close as a reminder of his failure with Ben Solo years earlier.
7. Ron Howard reportedly reshot almost all of Solo
Looking ahead past The Last Jedi, the next Star Wars film will be Solo, the Han Solo standalone movie directed by Ron Howard. Howard replaced Phil Lord and Chris Miller after the two were fired, and they were removed so far along in production that there have been questions about how much of the film would be Howard’s, exactly.
Well, the podcast The Resistance Broadcast recently reported a rumor that Howard reshot almost the entire movie, i.e. 80 percent or more. They also reported that the budget for the film doubled due to these reshoots. This is pretty big if true, and it suggests that Solo will be a completely different film than Lord and Miller were going for.
Rumor has it that the previous version was more humorous and improvisational, whereas Howard’s will stick closer to the script and will be more serious. This behind-the-scenes drama may or may not negatively impact the film, as Rogue One was also heavily reshot. But we’ll find out for sure how these extensive reshoots impacted the movie when Solo opens in May 2018.
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