Star Wars: Episode IX is still a huge mystery (we don’t even know what the title is), but recent reports out of Disney’s upcoming Galaxy’s Edge theme park experience may reveal some key details about the highly anticipated movie. Set visits to the under-construction Disneyland expansion seem to confirm earlier reports about Star Wars: Episode IX, especially regarding when the movie will take place and a key plot detail about the conflict between the First Order and the Resistance.
Does “Rise of the Resistance” Confirm a Time Jump between Last Jedi and Episode IX?
We’ve suspected for a while now that Episode IX will pick up a year (or more) after the events of The Last Jedi. John Boyega even seemed to confirm the Star Wars rumor in an interview with Empire Magazine last December, though he later tweeted that he didn’t even remember having that conversation, chalking it up to sleep deprivation.
Suffice to say, Star Wars fans are still a bit confused about exactly when Episode IX will take place. Especially since these movies typically feature significant time jumps between them, but The Last Jedi broke that trend by beginning moments after the end of The Force Awakens. Thankfully, the answer may come from io9’s Galaxy’s Edge set visit.
Here’s the relevant detail, buried in a 77-item list of facts about the theme park:
If everything happening on Batuu is canon, so it also goes for the rides. The events of the attractions are both canon — especially “Rise of the Resistance,” which has the actual actors in it. (Purely speculative but, the ride may suggest there’s a sizable time jump before Episode IX, since it likely represents a battle between the Resistance and the First Order after The Last Jedi.)
This isn’t clear confirmation, but it definitely seems to imply that something important happens between The Last Jedi and Star Wars: Episode IX. That would suggest there’s some sort of time jump, though at this point, whether it’s a month, a year, or longer is still a mystery.
Does Galaxy’s Edge Confirm a MacGuffin in Episode IX?
Another popular rumor is that Star Wars: Episode IX will focus on some powerful item, weapon, or piece of information that both sides of the conflict are chasing after. Basically, a MacGuffin that will push the plot forward and force a conflict between the key characters in the First Order and the Resistance.
The often-reliable Making Star Wars reported as much earlier this month, revealing that “heroes and our villains are in a race to find ‘something’” against the backdrop of multiple “battles across the galaxy.” Now, it seems this “something” could be located on Batuu, a new planet in the Star Wars galaxy where Galaxy’s Edge takes place.
Batuu’s geography is dominated by naturally forming rock spires, and the planet’s major city is Black Spire Outpost. According to Entertainment Weekly, this could be a key location in the race to find that “something” the entire galaxy is looking for:
The story of Galaxy’s Edge is that the Resistance and the First Order are both visiting Black Spire Outpost in search of something (maybe December’s Episode IX will illuminate that more.)
Of course, if the search for Episode IX’s MacGuffin takes place during the time jump in between the previous and upcoming Star Wars movies, then it’s unclear what this means for Episode IX. Perhaps the movie will begin just as the First Order and the Resistance clash on Batuu? Or maybe whatever they find on this planet is only a clue leading to the actual “something” they need.
Either way, Star Wars fans could learn more before Episode IX hits theaters this December. Galaxy’s Edge is set to open this summer at Disneyland in California, followed by a similar experience at Disney World in Florida in the fall.