On Monday, January 23rd, it was revealed that the newest installment of the Star Wars franchise will be entitled ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’. Although J.J. Abrams will be executively producing the film, Rian Johnson took over as both writer and director of Episode VIII, and the plot of the movie will immediately pick up where Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) left off.
Johnson’s plan for the movie was to further explore the characters Rey, Finn, and Poe. In an interview with USA Today, he explained, “I wanted to know more about each of them, and that doesn’t just mean information or backstory.” This includes figuring out “what’s the most difficult thing each of them could be challenged with now” and “seeing how they handle that.”
This is also the final Star Wars film that will feature the late-Carrie Fisher, who completed filming for her character Princess Leia Organa before her untimely death in December. Although there has been rumors spread about a possible digital recreation of Fisher in future movies, Lucasfilm has shot down any chance of this happening despite the fact that she was meant to appear in Episode IX in 2018. The rest of the cast is made up of Mark Hamill, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, Gwendoline Christie, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, John Boyega, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels, and Andy Serkis.
The film is set to hit theaters on December 15th, 2017.