There’ve been plenty of leaks and rumors about General Leia Organa’s role in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, but we still really have no idea what she’s up to in this movie. The sensitive nature of Carrie Fisher’s post-humous involvement in Episode IX makes this particularly difficult to parse, but it also gives us some pretty big clues since director J.J. Abrams has to rely on unused footage from previous movies. Now, a new leak from Disney’s Star Wars-themed Galaxy’s Edge theme park may have revealed exactly what Princess Leia is up to in Rise of Skywalker, and it has everything to do with a planet that even the most passionate Star Wars fans probably don’t remember.
Warning! Possible spoilers for Star Wars: Episode IX below.
This leak comes from the Rise of the Resistance ride at Galaxy’s Edge, which is a sort of interactive experience featuring video recordings of the movie’s main characters. That includes Rey (Daisy Ridley), and in one moment capture on camera by geek culture podcaster Aaron Goins, Rey clearly states that Leia has a secret base on the planet Bakura.
There’s a lot to unpack in just these seven short words, but let’s start with “General Organa’s secret base.” That could mean a lot of things, but it’s worth noting that Galaxy’s Edge is set between the events of The Last Jedi and The Rise of Skywalker, so whatever base Rey is referring to will probably play a key role in Episode IX. And we may already know what Leia was doing on that secret base …
Rumor has it that an unused plotline from Episode VII: The Force Awakens showed Leia Organa pursuing her own Death Star-level weapon in an attempt to wipe out the First Order. That obviously didn’t make it into the movie, but it may have been filmed. It could also explain why Leia and the Resistance operated separately from the New Republic. They were too radical for the official government to endorse, at least publicly.
So if Disney has that extra Leia footage just sitting around collecting dust, it makes a lot of sense to use it in The Rise of Skywalker. Teasing that secret base on Bakura could be a clever way to establish the planet as the home to a powerful new weapon that could help the good guys win in Episode IX. However, there’s something else you might not know about Bakura that’s even more important.
The Extended Universe (meaning non-canonical) Star Wars novel The Truce at Bakura, details an incident between the Rebellion’s leaders and the reptilian Ssi-Ruuk race that takes place shortly after the events of Return of the Jedi. The book, which features Luke, Han, and Leia, reveals that the Ssi-Ruuk possess a powerful technology that’s powered by life forms. The Ssi-Ruuk also become aware of the Force, and believe that Force-sensitive beings would make their tech even more powerful.
Eventually, the Force ghost of Obi-Wan shows up and warns Luke that the Ssi-Ruuk are dangerous. Meanwhile, Anakin’s ghost also shows up and apologizes to Leia for being a terrible father. Eventually, the good guys win and manage to escape Bakura. In the end, the New Republic attempts to keep the entire incident a secret — especially the Ssi-Ruuk and their scary technology.
So why does any of this matter? Well, if Leia’s secret base is on Bakura and this dangerous technology/weapon was also on Bakura, then maybe that’s what Leia was after. Of course, The Truce at Bakura is non-canonical and didn’t happen in the Star Wars universe where Rise of Skywalker takes place, but that doesn’t mean the new movie can’t take inspiration from the Extended Universe. It’s happened before.
At the very least, it seems we may know what Leia’s role will be in Rise of Skywalker, and it could have everything to do with a superweapon on a secret Bakura base. Whether that base is home to some powerful reptilian technology remains to be seen.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker hits theaters on December 20.*