Last night, Disney released the final trailer for Star Wars Episode 7: The Force Awakens and announced pre-sale tickets to the collective squee of Star Wars fans around the world. Coming from a guy who bought a ticket to Meet Joe Black in 1998 just to see the trailer for The Phantom Menace in theaters, it goes without saying that the hype around the latest Star Wars movie is electrifying. Here are just a few of our guesses based on this new trailer and FWIW here is a link to our guesses on the original teaser trailer from about a year ago to compare against.
The Force Awakens is Han Solo’s Movie
It’s a well known part of Star Wars legend that Harrison Ford argued to have Han Solo killed in Return of the Jedi. By the time ROTJ began production, Ford was well on his way to becoming a bona fide movie star and wanted to closure with the character. George Lucas nixed the idea and Ford is famous for quipping, “George didn’t see much of a future in dead Han Solo toys…” For Ford to reprise his role in The Force Awakens, we’re expecting an epic swan song for the character of Han Solo. What we loved about the most recent trailer was that Han has become a believer in all things Jedi, as opposed to his original opinion of it being just a hokey religion. Still no word on Solo’s stance on midichlorians though…
Is Luke Skywalker Even in This Movie? Probably Not Much.
Kylo Ren (played by Adam Driver) is the new bad guy of The Force Awakens. Kylo is a “Knight of Ren” and judging by this pic there are at least a half a dozen other Knights of Ren. We’re guessing that when you join the group you have to change your surname to “Ren” much like Joey, DeeDee, Johnny, Tommy, Marky, Richie and C.J. did when joining The Ramones. Luke Skywalker (played by Mark Hamill) is more than likely hiding from these guys (The Rens not The Ramones) and allowing Han Solo to soak up the screen time for the majority of the new movie. The good news is, whatever kerfuffule that is happening in TFA sets the stage for a major Luke Skywalker cliffhanger reveal and gives him a major role in Star Wars Episode 8 and Episodes 9 that follow.
Don’t Let The Lightsaber Fool You… Finn is the Next Han Solo
Quite a bit of promo material for The Force Awakens shows Finn (played by John Boyega) wielding a lightsaber. We think this is intentionally misleading. Our guess is, by the end of the movie, Finn is set up as the Han Solo character for the new series of movies. One thing the Star Wars prequel trilogy lacked was a sense of humor, and our guess is that Boyega is the guy to bring that little bit of irreverence to the new movies. The lightsaber bits have been released so that director J.J. Abrams can keep some of the surprises in TFA under wraps until the movie premieres in December.
Don’t Let The Lack of Lightsaber Fool You… Rey is the Next Jedi
Daisy Ridley plays Rey, a young woman stuck on the desert planet of Jakku when The Force Awakens opens. Rey fits pretty much all of the standard heroic tropes that George Lucas paid homage to in the original Star Wars movie. She’s “nobody” who is plucked from her mundane existence and brought out onto a big adventure. Our guess is that she’s stuck here by design, possibly a lost sibling of Kylo Ren (Adam Driver’s character) or maybe even the protege of Luke Skywalker, who has been sent to Jakku to collect junk and complete her Jedi trials. PR materials for The Force Awakens have omitted the characters last name, leading us to guess that it might be either Solo or Skywalker… as long as it isn’t Binks, we will be happy.
Oscar Isaac is the Third Wheel of The Force Awakens
After amazing performances in Ex Machina, A Most Violent Year and Inside Llweyn Davis, Oscar Isaac is probably the most seasoned actor of TFA‘s trio of new heroes. That said, we can’t figure out why he seems to have such a small role in the upcoming movie as hotshot pilot Poe Dameron. Thus far, his character arc seems to center around a) flying a spaceship and b) getting captured (not necessarily in that order). It’s possible that once Harrison Ford finally agreed to reprise his role as Han Solo, Isaac’s role was reduced to make room for Han. Hopefully he’s got more to do in this movie than has been teased in the trailers so far.
Overall, as Star Wars fans, it’s hard not to be excited about the new (and presumably final) trailer. It teases enough elements to please fans of the original Star Wars movies and is enough of a re-tooling to bring in new fans. Early buzz has been good, and there have been record breaking pre-ticket sales as of Oct 19th. This will be the first Star Wars film to be produced without the direct involvement of George Lucas, so it’s a bit bittersweet as well, and only time will tell how the series will continue on without his input. We’re hopeful and excited to see what’s to come.