For the umpteenth time, it's back. And so long as Disney can rely on the cash flow, expect it to be back a long time from now, in a generation far, far away.
Indeed, not only did Disney release the first ever "Star Wars: Episode IX" teaser trailer on Friday but also the mysterious title. Step aside "The Last Jedi" and witness the awesomeness of (*drumroll*) "The Rise of Skywalker." WATCH:
Why must it always be the word "Rise"? "The Dark Knight Rises," "Rise of the Planet of the Apes," "Hanibal Rising," "Rise of the Machines," "Rise of the Silver Surfer," "Rise of the Lycans," "Rise of the Cobra." According to IMDB, the prequel "The Untouchables: Capone Rising" has been in development for nearly a decade. Is there a franchise in Hollywood left that has not used the word "Rise" in one of its titles at this point?
Exactly which Skywalker will rise in the movie remains a mystery. Some fans have speculated it refers to either Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader or Kylo Ren/Ben Solo (a Skywalker by blood).
As evidenced by the trailer, various old faces will return for the ninth installment, including Billy Dee Williams, who will reprise his role as Lando Calrissian for the third time. Despite having passed away, actress Carrie Fisher will also reprise her role as Princess Leia. According to The Hollywood Reporter, director JJ Abrams utilized "unused footage they shot together" on "The Force Awakens" in 2015. Speaking at a Star Wars Celebration in Chicago on Friday, Abrams said he had no choice but to feature the actress in the movie in some way.
"You don't recast that part and you don't suddenly have her disappear," Abrams told the audience. "The weird miracle of having a number of scenes from Force Awakens that had got unused, looking at those scenes and starting to understand that there was actually a way to use those scenes and continue her story, so that it would be her. The idea of having a CG character was off the table. … We said, 'What if we could write scenes about her so it's her performance?'"
However, the big return may be none other than actor Ian McDermid reprising his role as Emperor Palpatine; the trailer features his iconic laugh shortly after Luke Skywalker says in voiceover, "No one is ever really gone."
At the same event in Chicago on Friday, Abrams said that the events in Episode IX will take place several years after the events in "The Last Jedi," saying it will be the first official adventure led by the new cast of characters: Rey, Finn, Poe, and BB-8.
"Some time has gone by," Abrams said. "This is an adventure that the group goes on together. … One of the great things about the movie, getting to work on it, was the dynamic between the characters. They are just the most wonderful together."
Whether or not this installment will send "Star Wars" off with a bang remains to be seen. Given the underwhelming performance of "Solo: A Star Wars Story," needless to say, Disney will have a serious problem on its hands if fanboys leave disappointed once again.