The Next Star Wars Movie Will Avoid Repeating a Huge Mistake

Somehow, the most controversial choice of the sequel trilogy won't be repeated.

An image of Rey from the latest Star Wars trilogy.

Calling Rise of Skywalker “divisive” is like calling A New Hope “influential,” in that calling it a massive understatement would be a massive understatement. Star Wars took a huge swing with the final installment of the sequel trilogy, and while some thought it was a satisfying end to the Skywalker Saga, many fans thought the big reveal was a cop-out.

Now, it appears the Skywalker Saga isn’t completely over. The next Star Wars movie will follow an older Rey Skywalker as she re-establishes the Jedi Order, but thankfully, it doesn’t seem like old mistakes will be repeated.

Fans were irate, or at least confused, when the big villain of Rise of Skywalker turned out to be Palpatine, biding his time on Exegol after rising from the dead thanks to cloning technology. His appearance from out of nowhere was shocking — and disappointing. Not only did making him the supervillain of the entire sequel trilogy feel like a sudden and desperate attempt to cash in on nostalgia, but making him Rey’s grandfather erased Last Jedi’s intriguing claim that Rey was a complete nobody who just happened to have Force powers.

Palpatine returned as a wizened clone in Rise of Skywalker.


But will there be a Palpatine family reunion in Rey’s next adventure? Palpatine actor Ian McDiarmid was asked by ComicBook about possibly appearing, and McDiarmid responded with a simple, “I haven’t been approached.” Considering how high-profile the film is, it seems like actors would be revealed early on. Daisy Ridley was confirmed to reappear in the movie at Star Wars Celebration earlier this week. Maybe McDiarmid’s involvement is being hidden, but pulling the same trick twice would be a bit silly.

While this means we probably won’t see Palpatine as we saw him in the sequels, it doesn’t completely rule out any Palpatine involvement. With Rey part of his bloodline, her continuing adventures could be paired with flashbacks to young Palpatine’s seduction by the Sith courtesy of Darth Plagueis. Or maybe she’ll just hear his voice in her head as she continues to be tempted by dark thoughts.

Ian McDiarmid hasn’t been approached to play Palpatine in the next Star Wars movie.

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Matt Smith was tapped to play a role in the sequels before his scenes were cut, and fans speculated that he would have been a young Palpatine. In theory, this upcoming movie could revive and expand on that role. It would be interesting to see Rey’s rise as a Jedi leader and Palpatine’s rise as a Sith leader in parallel, and if executed well, it could justify Rise’s decision to tie the two together.

For now, however, fans can rest assured that Palpatine won’t “somehow return” yet again, at least not in his deformed clone form.

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