'Star Wars: Episode 9' Trailer, Release Date, Title, Rumors, and Leaks
Even though Star Wars: Episode VIII — The Last Jedi proved divisive among fans and controversial across the internet, stories from the galaxy far, far away will continue far into the distant future. The next step in late 2019 happens with Star Wars: Episode IX in a movie that’ll complete the most recent trilogy and end the Skywalker saga for good.
Even though it’s been almost a year since The Last Jedi debuted in theaters, we still know very little about the future of Star Wars and even less about Episode IX. In the distant future, we have The Mandalorian to look forward to, telling the live-action story of Boba Fett’s spiritual successor. There’s also Rian Johnson’s separate trilogy of films and even one from Game of Thrones creators.
But we know what you’re really here for. Here’s everything we know about Star Wars: Episode IX.
What Is the Star Wars: Episode IX Release Date?
Thanks to Disney’s clearcut schedule, this we do know: Star Wars: Episode IX is scheduled for release on December 20, 2019.
What Is the Star Wars: Episode IX Title?
So far, the only official branding we’ve seen for Episode IX is the roman numeral “IX” and that hardly counts for anything.
When Will Lucasfilm Announce the Title for Star Wars: Episode IX?
There’s no way to know exactly when this might happen, especially with everyone caring much more about the Avengers 4 title these days, but the Episode IX title will probably be announced sometime in late January 2019. That’s based on comparing the promotional schedule to the previous two movies in the new trilogy.
Lucasfilm announced the title for The Last Jedi on January 23, 2017 via a blog post on the official Star Wars website about 11 months before the December 15, 2017 release date. So it stands to reason Lucasfilm might do the same for Episode IX with a surprise blog post sometime that month. The company has used the official Star Wars blog for several key announcements, including the Episode IX official cast announcement in July.
The title of The Force Awakens was, by comparison, announced in early November 2014 via a tweet from Disney, over a year before the December 18, 2015 release date. That film was launching a new trilogy, though, so Lucasfilm probably wanted more advance marketing.
We’ll be shocked if we make it to February without at least an official title for Episode IX.
How Does The Last Jedi Set Up the Plot of Star Wars: Episode IX?
Based on what happens at the end of The Last Jedi, the Resistance is in shambles and Kylo Ren is now in control of the First Order, having killed Supreme Leader Snoke. Luke Skywalker is dead. So two of the original trilogy’s core three heroes are gone.
All the Resistance has is the Millennium Falcon, Rey’s broken lightsaber, and … hope. Most of the core cast is slated to return, including Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker and the late Carrie Fisher as Leia Organa. Even Billy Dee Williams is reprising his role as Lando Calrissian.
Most of what we’ve heard about the plot comes from random rumors. Kylo Ren might get a new helmet. The Resistance might be holed up on Batuu, the planet that’s being featured in the new Star Wars theme parks. There might be some kind of time jump. Is it one, two, or five years? Is it nothing at all? It’ll be quite some time until we learn.
When Will the Star Wars: Episode IX Trailer Be Released?
We could still be a long ways away from a legit Episode IX trailer. The first Last Jedi trailer was only released on October 9, 2017 — just over two months before release. The October 19, 2015 release of The Force Awakens trailer pretty much exactly two months before release definitely makes it seem like we won’t get a full Episode IX trailer until mid-October 2019.
The Last Jedi also got an incoherent teaser trailer on April 15, 2017. So does that mean we might get a similar treatment for Episode IX in April 2019? Probably, which means we still have almost half a year to wait for even a tease.
What New Characters Are Joining Star Wars: Episode IX?
Actress Naomi Ackie is in the cast, and one supposed set leak claims she’s playing Lando Calrissian’s daughter.
Some rumors indicate that Darth Vader could also return as a Force Ghost.
Are There Any Characters That Won’t Return in Star Wars: Episode IX?
Making Star Wars reported December 2018 that Benicio del Toro’s “DJ” would not return and neither would the infamous Porgs. This at the very least could just be an indication that the film won’t return to Ahch-To, a surprising twist considering Luke’s green lightsaber is there. That would be an easy way for Rey to replace her busted lightsaber.
How Is Star Wars: Episode IX Handling the Death of Carrie Fisher?
Unfortunately, Leia Organa actress Carrie Fisher died in December 2016 after she had filmed at least most of her scenes for The Last Jedi.
That movie remained largely unchanged from how it was originally intended, and even though Lucasfilm used a digital, de-aged representation of Fisher’s Princess Leia in Rogue One, the company has publicly claimed they won’t do the same in Episode IX.
When The Daily Beast asked Oscar Isaac about Leia’s role in the new film, he said: “It deals with the amazing character that Carrie created in a really beautiful way.” But beyond that, we don’t know much.
Is Rey Getting a New Lightstaber in Star Wars: Episode IX?
This hasn’t been confirmed in any definitive way, but the hosts of the weekly web series The Star Wars Show stated at Lucasfilm HQ that the blue Skywalker lightsaber Rey’s wielded for two movies has indeed been totally broken.
Rumors and supposed leaks indicate that Rey builds a new lightsaber. This would, at the very least, mirror how Luke suddenly had a new green saber in Return of the Jedi. We don’t know if she uses the broken pieces or if she has to find an all-new Kyber Crystal. I personally hope that she builds herself a new double-sided yellow lightsaber.
**Star Wars: Episode IX will be released in theaters December 20, 2019.*