'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' trailer release

This image released by Lucasfilm shows John Boyega as Finn in a scene from the upcoming "Star Wars: The Last Jedi," expected in theaters in December. (Industrial Light & Magic/Lucasfilm via AP)

This image released by Lucasfilm shows John Boyega as Finn in a scene from the upcoming "Star Wars: The Last Jedi," expected in theaters in December. (Industrial Light & Magic/Lucasfilm via AP)

Last Friday, Star Wars fans saw the release of the first trailer for “The Last Jedi,” the eighth installment of the series. With over one million views on Youtube, it’s safe to say the movie has been highly anticipated. The official trailer was released on the same day as a “Star Wars Celebration” panel. The hour long panel featured director Rian Johnson, Kathleen Kennedy of Lucasfilm, Josh Gad as host, and stars John Boyega, Daisy Ridley and Mark Hamill.

From what it looks like from the trailer, the next movie will pick up right where “The Force Awakens” left off, with Rey (Ridley) climbing a hill where Luke Skywalker (Hamill) awaits. The Resistance assumes Skywalker is the last Jedi but, from the last movie, audiences are led to believe Rey has some connection to the force. There is speculation she may even be related to Skywalker. According to Ridley, we can expect to learn a lot more about Rey’s past in the upcoming movie.

“We go deeper into Rey’s story,” Ridley said. “And what is very apparent from where we left off in ‘The Force Awakens’ and begin in ‘The Last Jedi,’ is that Rey has a certain expectation of Luke. And as a lot of people know, it’s difficult when you meet your heroes because they might not be what you expect.”

“There’s still a lot unsaid about where he’s been and what he’s done,” Hamill said about Luke’s context.

The entire trailer includes multiple voiceovers and echoes from different characters talking about the Force. We hear Skywalker guiding Rey, Rey saying she sees the balance between dark and light and even Yoda, very faintly in the background. One of the most unique parts of the trailer are the almost whispered lines from past films, barely detectable unless you are listening to the trailer at full volume. Just about 50 seconds in, as we see a shot of a stoic Princess Leia in front of a display of the galaxy, you can hear her iconic line from the fourth movie: “Help me, Obi-Wan.”

Fans are excited at the prospect of a space battle in “The Last Jedi” as it was something left out of “The Force Awakens.”

The score of the trailer, especially in the beginning, is also very reminiscent of the soundtrack from the prequel films.

There is plenty of foreshadowing, with a glimpse of Kylo Ren’s mask mangled on the ground and the Jedi Knight symbol on an ancient looking manuscript a bit later on. There’s also a very dark scene of Luke and R2-D2 in front of a burning Jedi temple, something audiences saw flashbacks of in “The Force Awakens.” Luke Skywalker also says a fairly ominous line, “It’s time for the Jedi to end.”

We also see Finn, pilot Poe Dameron and BB-8 make their returns for the eighth installment. Some new characters will, of course, be introduced, including Rose, played by Kelly Marie Tran. Rose is part of the Resistance and, according to Johnson, will have the biggest role of the new characters.

Many fans seem to think the movie will be about Luke, Rey and the rest of the characters discovering the area between good and evil; that perhaps there is a grey path to follow. This is hinted at when Luke can be heard responding to Rey’s vision of dark and light by saying, “It’s so much more than that.”

The trailer was also released in conjunction with a new poster, in which Rey strikes the same pose Luke Skywalker did in the original films, with light-saber pointed towards the sky.

According to the panel and director, “The Last Jedi” is still in production, currently at the editing stages. With plenty of explosions, light sabers and spaceships, the next film in the multi-billion dollar franchise is sure to impress.

“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” will hit theaters Dec. 15, 2017.


Julia Mancini is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at Julia.mancini@uconn.edu.