By Contributing Writer- Jeremy Wilkerson
Star Wars Celebration has ended and fans left the weekend event fairly happy. After a year of discourse over The Last Jedi and a lackluster box office for Solo, Star Wars seems to be back in full force. Three big panels happened, including the highly anticipated Episode IX panel, the Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order panel, and The Mandalorian panel. Tons of brand new information was given regarding characters, plot, and production, meaning there’s a lot of ground to cover.
Star Wars: Episode IX Panel
Possibly the biggest news here is the long-awaited reveal of the title for the ninth installment, The Rise of Skywalker, quite fitting for the final film in the Skywalker saga, with the title for Avengers Endgame being held back until the official trailer release, it seems that Star Wars is pushing that tradition, leaving speculation constant.
We learned a lot of new information, such as Naomie Ackie’s mysterious character, Jannah, new aliens such as Klaud and a new droid companion, D-0. Hints are given towards the roles and characterization of characters like Rey and Finn, and even returning characters like Lando Calrissian, who got a big cheer from the audience.
The trailer shows off action with our sequel trilogy heroes, with the emotional Princess Leia theme playing, topping it all off with chilling dialogue from Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker. Perhaps the biggest reveal of all is the return of Emperor Palpatine, the notorious big bad of the Skywalker saga. His cold, iconic laughter setting the internet on fire. The road to December will definitely be worth it.
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
After a controversial launch of Battlefront II in 2017, EA’s new take on the Star Wars franchise is purely a single player experience. This is emphasized on and brought up a lot. The game is all about one-on-one combat as you follow a former Padawan on the run from Imperial Inquisitors, who previously appeared in Star Wars Rebels. Cameron Monaghan of Gotham fame plays the lead role in this story-filled game.
While not much is known about actual gameplay, Fallen Order seems to be a refreshing entry in the recent Star Wars games, with the developers of Apex Legends and Titanfall helming the project, and EA’s heavy push on the exclusion of microtransactions keeping the future bright.
The Mandalorian is one of the more interesting Star Wars projects at the moment, being the first live-action TV show, it has a lot riding on it. The show still is shrouded in secrecy, but we learn about a few actors’ roles, including Carl Weathers as Greef Carga in traditional Star Wars naming fashion, Gina Carano as a former shock trooper, and Pedro Pascal’s role as the lead character, who’s inspired by western and samurai characters.
The show also has talent behind the camera, with Iron Man’s Jon Favreau playing the role of showrunner, along with talented directors such as Taika Waititi and Bryce Dallas Howard directing a few episodes, it appears that The Mandalorian won’t disappoint. A cool tidbit given by Favreau is that the main character’s ship was actually built from the ground up, and not CGI, seemingly giving us a more grounded tale in the universe.
2019’s Star Wars Celebration holds a lot of new information for Star Wars fans, regardless of what you like, whether it be movies, games, or shows, there’s something here for you. Star Wars never left, and the hype will be in the air more than ever, with new content spread throughout the year. It’s an excellent time to be a Star Wars fan.