Star Wars: The Last Jedi Covers Entertainment Weekly

Rey and Luke are on the cover of EW!

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EW Features Star Wars: The Last Jedi On Cover!

EW Features Star Wars: The Last Jedi On Cover!

Entertainment Weekly has provided fans with a new first look at the upcoming Star Wars sequel! The images feature Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, John Boyega all int the movie plus another of writer/director Rian Johnson on set. On the covers are Ridley with her lightsaber ignited and Mark Hamill with a hood over his head. These looks don't reveals too much, but are sure to get fans excited for the film.

Daisy Ridley as Rey meets Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker

Daisy Ridley as Rey meets Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker

Star Daisy Ridley said to EW about her character Rey, “She’s so hopeful to everything. And obviously there’s a hint of, ‘What the hell?’” That rejection has an impact on Rey, who is already dealing with being abandoned on a trash planet as a child, but when she arrives on the ancient Jedi planet to bring Luke back into the fight against the First Order and his evil nephew Kylo Ren, she’s met with the hermit’s own Resistance. Ridley said that Rey has some lofty expectations when it comes to Skywalker, and he himself is dealing with his own issues of guilt in the movie. Ridley said of her character’s whirlwind journey in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, “Regardless of everything else, she’s been welcomed. No one ever really turns away from her. I don’t think one girl, who he doesn’t know, turning up with a lightsaber is gonna make him go, ‘Oh, s**t, yeah, of course I’ll get back into the action.’ But does he not know her?” Mark Hamill said, hinting at her tragic and mysterious past, “Luke made a huge mistake in thinking that his nephew was the chosen one, so he invested everything he had in Kylo, much like Obi-Wan did with my character. And he is betrayed, with tragic consequences. Luke feels responsible for that. That’s the primary obstacle he has to rejoining the world and his place in the Jedi hierarchy, you know? It’s that guilt, that feeling that it’s his fault, that he didn’t detect the darkness in him until it was too late.” 

Adam Driver as Kylo Ren

Adam Driver as Kylo Ren

Writer and directed Rian John said, “The very first step in the writing of this was figuring out why he’s on that island. We know that he is not a coward. He’s not just hiding because he’s scared. But we also know that he must know his friends are in danger. He must know the galaxy needs him. And he’s sitting on this island in the middle of nowhere. There had to be an answer. It had to be something where Luke Skywalker believes he’s doing the right thing – and the process of figuring out what that is and unpacking it is the journey for Rey. The fact that Luke says, ‘I only know one truth. It’s time for the Jedi to end…’ I mean, that’s a pretty amazing statement for someone who was the symbol of hope and optimism in the original films. When I first read it, my jaw dropped. What would make someone that alienated from his original convictions? That’s not something that you can just make up in an afternoon, and I really struggled with this thing.” Hamill said of what happened to Luke, “There’s massive amounts of backstory that is left to your imagination and I couldn’t do my job without figuring out what that was. Since it’s not really important to the main story as a whole a lot of it is just for my own process. I talked with Rian about it and went into this elaborate scenario of what happened to Luke after the end of the Return of the Jedi.”

Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca and a Porg in the cockpit of the Millennium Falcon

Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca and a Porg in the cockpit of the Millennium Falcon

The Porgs live on the planet of Ach-To with their neighbor Luke Skywalker, and were inspired by the real-life migration of Puffins to the island of Skellig Michael, where much of the movie and the final scene of The Force Awakens, was shot. These creatures are sure to become fan-favorites when the movie is released. They seemingly come aboard the Falon with Chewy in the movie too. It'll be interesting see if they play a bigger role than we might think in this sequel. Are these the new Ewoks?

Porg

Porg

Porgs aren’t the only creatures that inhabit Ach-To though, as the matronly “fish-bird” aliens called “The Caretakers” also live there.  Johnson says, “They’ve been there for thousands of years, and they essentially keep up the structures on the island. They’re all female, and I wanted them to feel like a remote sort of little nunnery. Neal Scanlan’s crew designed them, and costume designer Michael Kaplan made these working clothes that also reflected sort of a nun-like, spartan sort of existence.” Johnson describes their communication as “a blubbery sort of Scottish fish talk,” and you can check out a first look at the creatures in the image below.

John Boyega as Finn piloting a Resistance ship

John Boyega as Finn piloting a Resistance ship

Actor John Boyega, who plays Finn, tells EW of where we find his character after the events of The Force Awakens, “It got really real for him, and he just wants to get away and not be involved. His intention in the first place was to go to the Outer Rim. He was always brought back in The Force Awakens, but this is his chance to get away and perhaps find Rey and go off together. He’s trying to do that at first.” Unfortunately, the thing about doing a big heroic act like helping to destroy Starkiller Base is that now everyone thinks you’re a hero like Resistance mechanic Rose  as played by Kelly Marie Tran, who looks up Finn. Boyega says, “Everyone in the space, throughout the galaxy, would have heard about the young Jedi who discovered her powers and defeated Kylo Ren and the young former Stormtrooper who helped save the day. He’s a hero to people like Rose, who fight for the Resistance because their homes have been destroyed by the First Order.”

Kelly Mari Tran as Rose and John Boega as Finn infiltrate the First Order

Kelly Mari Tran as Rose and John Boega as Finn infiltrate the First Order

So when Rose first meets Finn, it’s a big deal for her, especially when she sees herself as kind of a nobody since her sister Paige portrayed by Veronica Ng is the one who’s the big deal as, “a Resistance gunner who fights on the front lines alongside Resistance luminaries like Poe Dameron,” while Rose is a grease monkey. However, when she meets Finn and sees him as a hero, he now feels like he has something to live up to even though he just wants to get away from the war. Their journey will end up taking Rose and Finn to the world of Cantonica, where they’ll be on a mission at the casino on Canto Bight. “The whole city is kind of one sort of luxury resort that’s been built on this very otherwise abandoned, arid planet,” director Rian Johnson says. “It’s like Vegas with aliens. So maybe it is just like Vegas.”

Snoke's Guards

Snoke's Guards

Rian Johnson tells EW, “The Emperor’s guards were very formal, and you always got the sense that they could fight, but they didn’t. They looked like they were more ceremonial, and you never really saw them in action. The Praetorians, my brief to costume designer Michael Kaplan was that those guys have to be more like samurai. They have to be built to move, and you have to believe that they could step forward and engage if they have to. They have to seem dangerous.” Speaking of Snoke, the character won’t be relegated to just a hologram this time around. The mysterious character will appear in the upcoming movie right next to the other characters. Johnson said, "Similar to Rey’s parentage, Snoke is here to serve a function in the story. And a story is not a Wikipedia page. For example, in the original trilogy, we didn’t know anything about the Emperor except what Luke knew about him, that he’s the evil guy behind Vader. Then in the prequels, you knew everything about Palpatine because his rise to power was the story.” Johnson added that fans will get to know “exactly as much about Snoke as we need to.” However, just because the movie won’t answer questions about his history, or possible secret identity, does not mean that he won’t play a big role in the film. The director added that Serkis portrayal of Snoke will be a menace to the First Order saying, “We will see more of him, and Andy Serkis will get to do much more in this film than he did in the last one, and that guy is just a force of nature. I’d be sitting at the monitor just with my eyes as big as dinner plates. It’s one of those performances where after every line, I’d look over at whoever’s standing next to me with an expression on my face like, ‘Oh, my God, we just got that.’”

Kylo Ren's TIE Silencer

Kylo Ren's TIE Silencer

Kylo Ren's new starfighter in the film will be a small fast ship capable of great destruction. There will definitely be more space battles as there were technically none int he Force Awakens since all of those ship battles took place int eh atmosphere of a planet. So Poe Dameron and company will want to be on the lookout for Kylo Ren if he has even half the skills of his grandfather as a pilot. When asked if the Resistance is on the rise after the destruction of Starkiller Base, Rian Johnson says, “No, no, no. Not at all. They’re a small band that’s now cut off, on its own, and hunted when the Republic is shattered. When the First Order did that hit, the Resistance is isolated, and they’re very, very vulnerable. That’s where we pick them up.”

Oscar Isaac as Poe Dameron in the cockpit of his stealth X-Wing

Oscar Isaac as Poe Dameron in the cockpit of his stealth X-Wing

Oscar Isaac's Poe Dameron will get more to do as well as he fights alongside General Organa as the Resistance goes on the run from the First Order who are out for revenge after the destruction for their weapon of mass destruction and headquarters Starkiller Base. He'll also get back into his signature stealthy black X-Wing to take out more First Order goons. His fate is unknown as his character was originally going to die in the opening scene of The Force Awakens but Isaac convinced writer and director J.J. Abrams to let him live to see another film. His wish came true, but for how long?  Oscar Isaac says of his role in Episode VIII, “Poe is in some ways a surrogate son for Leia, but also I think she sees in him the potential for a truly great leader of the Resistance and beyond. Poe’s arc is one of evolving from a heroic soldier to a seasoned leader, to see beyond the single-mindedness of winning the battle to the larger picture of the future of the galaxy. I think Leia knows she won’t be around forever and she, with tough love, wants to push Poe to be more than the badass pilot, to temper his heroic impulses with wisdom and clarity.” 

Casino World of Canto Bight

Casino World of Canto Bight

This is the casino planet that's been heavily rumored for a while now.  Here we will meet Benicio Del Toro's character DJ which some are speculating stands for Dark Jedi. Others think he could be an older version of Ezra Bridger, the main character of the animated series Star Wars Rebels. Regardless this will be a fun and colorful world and one on which we think Lando Calrissian would fit right in. It's unknown how it figures into the plot but will most likely involve Finn's undercover mission for the Resistance where he may need to find a target or gather valuable intelligence.

Writer/Director Rian Johnson on set with Carrie Fisher as General Leia Organa

Writer/Director Rian Johnson on set with Carrie Fisher as General Leia Organa

This will be the final on-screen performance of the late Carrie Fisher. She has a bigger role this time around and will be portrayed again as a strong leader of the Resistance against the First Order. After the loss of her husband Han Solo it's unclear how that tragedy might affect her leadership and character. It's sure to be a great send off for the actress and the character of Leia. She'll always be royalty to us. Rian Johnson says, “There’s no way that we could’ve known this would’ve been the last Star Warsmovie she would be in, so it’s not like we made the film thinking that we were bringing closure to the character. But watching the film, there’s going to be a very emotional reaction to what she does in this movie. I don’t want to tip the hat too much, but I will say that the heat is immediately turned up on the Resistance. Everybody is put in a pressure cooker right away, and relationships crack and strain under that pressure. That was really interesting to me, the notion of putting this small army under a lot of external pressure and showing some of the results within the Resistance itself.”

Writer/Director Rian Johnson on Set

Writer/Director Rian Johnson on Set

Star Wars: Episode VIII-The Last Jedi is written and directed by Rian Johnson, produced by Kathleen Kennedy and Ram Bergman, and stars Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson, Gwendoline Christie, Kelly Marie Tran, Andy Serkis, Laura Dern, Lupita Nyong'o, Benicio Del Toro, Carrie Fisher, and Mark Hamill. Rey seeks training in the ways of the Force from former Jedi Master Luke Skywalker, as Kylo Ren learns of the Dark Side from Supreme Leader Snoke, meanwhile Poe and General Leia must lead the Resistance to survive attacks of retaliation from the First Order, and Finn goes on an undercover mission with tough mechanic Rose to infiltrate the enemy in hopes of bringing them down once and for all. The movie opens into theaters on December 15.

Watch The Teaser Trailer Here!

Daisy Ridley As Rey

Daisy Ridley As Rey

Mark Hamill As Luke Skywalker

Mark Hamill As Luke Skywalker

Star Wars The Last Jedi