StarWars.com has officially annouced that Force Friday II is set for September 1, but more importantly (for our purposes) they’ve also given us our first look at Rey, Finn and Poe in The Last Jedi. Rey is not only front and center with a lightsaber, but she’s sporting a new hairstyle! Finn has a new shirt! Poe looks… Pretty much the same!
Episode VIII director Rian Johnson actually said something new! For USA Today’s 2017 movie preview, he said that “a large part of the movie” will address why Luke is on Ahch-To and what he’ll do next, as well as Rey’s “realization that she has this power and this gift.” It’s not the most shocking of revelations, but it’s more than we’ve gotten in quite a while.
She also said that Kelly Marie Tran’s role in VIII is “crucial” and discusses how it’s different working with Mark Hamill than it was Harrison Ford. Her interview starts at about 48 minutes in on the podcast.
→ Speaking of Rey’s parentage, there’s a bonkers but just crazy enough to maybe theory over at Force Material. It’s based on a “paranoid ‘70s conspiracy thriller” and hell, it still makes more sense than Snoke being Plagueis or any of the other bullshit we’ve had to put up with. But mostly, it amused me, and how often do fan theories manage that? (Not often.)
→ Your moment of zen: Mark Hamill and his VIII beard have a fashion gig.
We’ve got two more The Force Awakens commentary track previews today. In the first, at Yahoo, J.J. Abrams reveals that it was a suggestion from Selma director Ava DuVernay that lead to a key shot during Rey and Kylo’s duel. The second, at IGN, is about how Rey and Finn’s initial meeting changed.
There was a brief panic Friday evening after J.J. Abrams, speaking at at the Tribeca Film Festival, said “Rey’s parents are not in Episode VII. So I can’t possibly say in this moment who they are. But I will say it is something that Rey thinks about, too.”
Ric Olie says: Neither of Rey’s parents being in The Force Awakens would scuttle the popular theory that she’s Luke Skywalker’s daughter.
The panic was short-lived, though, because Entertainment Weekly got Abrams to clarify: “What I meant was that she doesn’t discover them in Episode VII. Not that they may not already be in her world.”
The Rey Skywalker theory lives to fight another day. The only things we have that even resemble firm denials are that she’s not a Solo or related to Rogue One’s Jyn Erso. But until something actually shows up in a movie, it’s still really anyone’s game. (Although I certainly wouldn’t put any money on the Erso theory.)
Though seriously folks, it’s not worth sniping over. This is not Star Wars’ first go-around with unanswered questions, and it won’t be the last. We will find out eventually and, yes, some of those answers might (or might not) surprise you. Don’t stake your theory flags too deeply.
Talking to MTV Saturday, Daisy Ridley addressed those ‘Jyn is Rey’s mom’ theories and confirms she does know Rey’s real parentage – but says that she really doesn’t think it’s that big a deal. She also plays coy on if Rey is (becoming?) a Jedi, though, so… Business as usual.