10 things we think we know about The Force Awakens
When Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith was released in 2005, it seemed like a conclusion to the saga. With the prequel trilogy completed, any loose ends were tied up nicely and the story was complete. Seven years later, all that changed when it was revealed that Disney had bought the rights to the franchise and would be starting production on yet another series of films.
The news brought initial scepticism; the geeks had their concerns – could Disney really shoulder such a legacy? Did the story have anywhere else to go?
In the wake of a string of the latest trailer released this week, all that has been forgotten. Anticipation is at an all-time high, classic characters are back, lightsabers are in full swing and the rumours are flying.
Here’s what we currently know about The Force Awakens…
WARNING: This contains plot spoilers, and predictions about the film which may or may not prove to be correct.
The timeline continues
It has been confirmed, by none other than the official Star Wars Twitter, that the film will be set 30 years after Return of the Jedi
— Star Wars (@starwars) March 18, 2014
Given that “familiar faces” will be returning, 30 years makes quite a bit of sense.
Less green screen, more real deal special effects
Many Star Wars fans were disappointed by the amount of green screen, computer-generated special effects in the last trilogy. Things are expected to be different this time round with director J. J. Abrams keen to stress his use of “practical special effects”. Videos have circulated of massive sets, giant puppets, clever prosthetics and much more.
Composer John Williams returns
Having written the score to the original films and probably one of the most memorable theme tunes of all time, it feels only right that composer John Williams should return for the latest Saga. If the powerful, dark music in the trailers is anything to go by, he’s still got it.
Abrams likes the Beastie Boys
So much so that it seems he has named one of his characters after their iconic 1998 album. Known to be a fan of the group, Abrams used their track Sabotage in his 2009 Star Trek reboot. In The Force Awakens character Ello Asty has a name that sounds remarkably similar to the album ‘Hello Nasty’. What’s more, eagle-eyed fans have spotted that, on the Ello Asty action figure, his helmet says ‘Born to Ill’ in Aurebesh, a fictional Star Wars language.
There’ll be a stormtrooper with a lightsaber
Finn, the stormtrooper who appears at the beginning of the trailer, will handle a lightsaber at some point during the film if images circulating online are anything to go by. How so if he’s not a Jedi? That’s a fact that still remains to be seen, although some fan boys have pointed out that that all stormtroopers are taught to use the Jedi weapon as part of hand-to-hand combat training.
The lead will be played by a woman
Looking back at past Star Wars films, the franchise doesn’t have a particularly good track record when casting female roles. That all looks set to change with The Force Awakens, with one of the film’s protagonists being that of Rey, played by British newcomer Daisy Ridley. Describing her character at the Star Wars Celebration, the actor told fans:
“We discover Rey on the desert planet of Jakku. She is a scavenger in a ship graveyard and she is completely self-sufficient and very solitary. Until she meets another character, and an adventure begins.”
The villain isn’t a Sith
J.J. Abrams had his work cut out when facing the task of creating a villain to match up with Darth Vader. From the glimpses we catch of him in the teaser trailers, bad guy Kylo Ren, played by Girls’ Adam Driver, looks pretty evil with his long black cloak and red crossguard sword. It led many to believe Kylo Ren was a Sith but, in fact, it was recently revealed that he is the leading member of an order called the Knights of Ren. A teaser trailer meant fans were treated to his voice ominously promising “I will finish what you started” whilst addressing the burnt out helmet of none other than Darth Vader.
Luke is back – although he’s not on the poster!
We already know that The Force Awakens will feature many of the original characters and who more important than Luke Skywalker himself? While it has already been revealed that Mark Hamill, who played Skywalker in the original films, has been cast again, it’s not entirely clear what role he will have in the overall plot. All we do know is what Hamill said when asked about the trailer at a recent press junket:
“It’s hard to believe it’s a whole year away that we have to wait,” Hamill joked, “but I’m practicing my phrase, ‘You’ll have to wait and see.’” However, fans are stressed out because there is no sign of Luke on the official movie poster…
So are Han Solo and Chewy
As revealed in one of the trailers, everyone’s favourite intergalactic duo is back. As an aged Han Solo smiles and says, “Chewy, we’re home” the nostalgia is almost too much to bear. What they’ll be doing no one is quite sure just yet, one thing we do know though is that they’ll be behind the wheel of the Millennium Falcon at some point – Harrison Ford having sustained a serious injury aboard the ship during filming.
And the big one – major spoiler alert!
Rumour has it that Han Solo, played by Harrison Ford, will die in The Force Awakens. How could that be so? The actor famously begged George Lucas, the director of the original series, to kill off the character but was told that Han had to stick around to complete his arc with Princess Leia – who will be featured, judging by Carrie Fisher’s appearance in the latest trailer. With Ford now getting a little old for space battles himself, could it be that his character looks set to face his end?