With Star Wars Celebration heading to Orlando this year to honor its 40 year history it seemed suitable for fans to expect a few surprises. With the follow up to The Force Awakens coming out this year it seemed like an appropriate time to release the first official footage of Star Wars: The Last Jedi. The eighth installment is directed by Looper director Rian Johnson and is once again produced by Kathleen Kennedy. Kennedy and Johnson were met on stage by Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, newcomer Kelly Marie Tran, and the one and only Mark Hamill.
As the panel wrapped up Kennedy and co surprised the Orlando audience by revealing the official poster for The Last Jedi. The crowd erupted with applause. As moderator Josh Gad was concluding the panel the whole auditorium was hushed, waiting, hoping to see a first look at the film. Rian Johnson stood up and in infomercial salesman fashion revealed that there was one more surprise, a teaser trailer for Episode VIII.
The teaser featured a majestic mashup of classic John Williams songs as well as shots that left Star Wars fans in shock and awe. Let’s take a closer look at the most intriguing shots from the teaser trailer
REY IN SHOCK
The first shot of the trailer, Rey appears to be on the same island where she found Luke at the end of The Force Awakens. The island Ahch-To is featured multiple times throughout the video and looks to be the place where Rey will be trained, with the help of Luke. You get wide establishing shots of Ahch-To with Luke projecting the line “Breathe. Just breathe. Now… reach out. What do you see?” after the initial shot of Rey. This sounds like a suitable first line for fans after waiting years to see and hear what Luke has to say.
After the quick montage of shots of Rey on Ahch-To we’re introduced to a shot of General Leia aboard a Resistance ship. A film icon, Carrie Fisher’s last on screen role will be in Episode VIII. If you listen closely you can hear Leia’s “Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi”.
KYLO REN’S MASK
At the end of The Force Awakens we’re left wondering how the heck Kylo made it off of Starkiller Base before its destruction. Similar to the charred Darth Vader mask in the previous film, this leaves a haunting impression on just how memorable Kylo Ren has become.
THE JEDI TREE
This could very well be an interior shot of a Jedi Temple, we see a bookshelf resting on what looks like a tree. As this shot progresses we can hear echoes of Yoda’s “Its energy surrounds us and binds us”.
One of the best shots in the trailer, the camera peaks around the island to reveal Rey practicing her lightsaber combat while Luke watches on from above.
WELCOME TO CRAIT
Just recently confirmed by Lucasfilm, the next couple of shots feature a new planet called Crait. Director Rian Johnson referred to it as a mineral planet that features an old, abandoned rebel base on it. The clip also shows new Resistance speeders that hang low to the ground and resemble a podracer. The red plumes are also a George Lucas Easter egg, tactically referencing his World War II drama Red Tails. The shot also features a glimpse of the bulkier versions of AT-ATs called AT-4Xs.
A quick shot of Finn indicates that he’s still recovering after getting sliced in the back by Kylo Ren’s hilted lightsaber.
POE AND BB-8
Our first look at Poe and BB-8 sees them running towards his X-Wing before it’s taken out, implying that the First Order have infiltrated a Resistance base.
MILLENNIUM FALCON vs TIE FIGHTERS
Being pursued by TIE fighters, the Falcon ducks and dodges assault while taking a TIE down itself.
REY READY TO RUMBLE
With a shimmer of blue bouncing off her face, it’s probably safe to assume Rey is running into action with a saber in hand.
KYLO’S KILLER INSTINCT
Many Star Wars fans were wondering if Kylo would continue to use his now iconic hilted red lightsaber, based off this shot we now have our answer. This is the next shot after the one of Rey and an implied blue lightsaber, a rematch early on in the film doesn’t sound unlikely after having them back to back.
If you’re wondering why this looks familiar it’s because we saw an insert shot of Luke putting his hand on R2-D2’s head in The Force Awakens when Rey has her first force vision. Chances are this is the Jedi Academy that was destroyed by Ben Solo and co and it will be expanded on in The Last Jedi.
PHASMA LEADS THE FIRST ORDER CHARGE
After playing a pivotal role in the marketing for The Force Awakens, Captain Phasma was left on the sidelines with very little to do. Direction Rian Johnson had stated that her role would drastically increase in The Last Jedi. Here she is taking charge as the First Order infiltrate a Resistance base.
STAR WARS, looks like we’re going to get some epic space battles.
“It’s Time For The Jedi To End”
The mic drop moment of the trailer, Luke states that “It’s time for the Jedi to end”. Take this whatever way you want, Luke Skywalker is a changed man. It’s very likely that Luke is now a gray Jedi (literally and psychologically) as he believes the way of a Jedi must dissolve and banish for good. Regardless, the Star Wars universe has forever changed.
EMBRACE THE DARK
The teaser trailer wraps with the red Star Wars: The Last Jedi logo stretching across the screen as an epic operatic score plays in the background, hammering home the dark and serious themes the film will offer.