Monday, July 18, 2016

SWCE: Rian Johnson Confirms 'Episode VIII' Will Pick Up Immediately After 'The Force Awakens'

By: Dominic Jones

Star Wars Episode VIII director took the stage at Star Wars Celebration Europe in London to give the fans in attendance (including yours truly) a tiny preview of his upcoming film.  Johnson spoke mostly about the process of making the film and the emotions that come with it.  He did, however, make one confirmation, ending a debate that has been going on across the internet for several months now.  Ever since Lucasfilm released a video showing Johnson on location on Skellig Michael with Mark Hamill and Daisy Ridley seemingly recreating the final scene of The Force Awakens, fans have wondered if this means Episode VIII starts immediately after Episode VII.  The answer, according to Johnson, is yes.

Johnson acknowledged that he was breaking a long standing Star Wars tradition by removing the time jump between movies.  However, he realised early on that this was how the film had to start.  Now, time to start speculating what could or should Luke's first line to Rey will be in Episode VIII and what this means for the rest of the characters.

Johnson didn't reveal much else in at the panel.  He did state that Rogue One: A Star Wars Story director Gareth Edwards had a cameo in Episode VIII and that he and producer Ram Bergman had cameos in Rogue One as Death Star gunners.  He also showed fans a behind the scenes photo of Star Wars Rebels executive producer Dave Filoni visiting the set, saying that he visited several times.

While some fans may have hoped for more out of this panel, Johnson did also tell fans that they can expect to hear (and probably see) a lot more about his film next year at Star Wars Celebration Orlando!

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