We’re digging deep into every single new detail revealed at the Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker presentation today at Star Wars Celebration 2019, but there’s no looking ahead without paying respect to what came before it. Before Stephen Colbert took the stage, the arena audience was treated to a special behind the scenes featurette not broadcast during the live stream, and the piece put the spotlight not on Episode IX specifically, but rather, the decades worth of storytelling, creativity and passion that paved the way to it.
As George Lucas describes at the beginning of the video, “[Star Wars] was originally designed to be a modern fairytale.” Soon thereafter, a young Mark Hamill says, “Hopefully it will justify as a series, make you say, ‘Gee, what happens next?’” Little did he know that eventually, the ninth episode of the Skywalker saga would pack an arena with thousands of fans eager to be part of the title and trailer reveal.
A young Anthony Daniels mentions having doubts that another Star Wars would work, but years later he says, “I now get that phrase, ‘Thank you for my childhood,’ because it’s something people carry with them now, forever.” That’s followed up by a beautiful quote from Alec Guinness: “As I see it, this has nothing to do with past, present or future. Star Wars [can be] in any of those areas.”
And that’s key to the franchise’s longevity. Star Wars isn’t a series that’s specific to just one generation. It’s passed on, shared and it also evolves, and Harrison Ford says as much; “It’s a big part of what makes these films so important to pass on from generation to generation.” And that’s when we get some footage featuring the new generation. Daisy Ridley says she feels honored to be allowed to continue the journey and then over one especially striking shot of Joonas Suotamo sitting beside Peter Mayhew, the young Chewbacca says, “It’s very cool to meet someone inspirational to a generation of moviegoers.”
J.J. Abrams chimes in and says, “If you’re a kid watching this 100 years from now, 500 years from now, you see this inevitability, this story conclude in a way that feels thrilling and shocking and funny and emotional and satisfying.”
We’ll see if that statement proves true when Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker hits theaters nationwide on December 20th but in that room this morning, the air was filled with reverence for this epic saga that’s changed lives and will likely continue to do so. I’ll never forget watching my original trilogy VHS tapes with my father as a kid, sharing the exhilarating and magical adventure together. I’ve grown to tap into certain Star Wars arcs and themes in new ways, ways that challenge me to assess who I’ve become and who I want to be. And ultimately, I hope to share all of this with my niece one day. Star Wars has proven to be a saga that brings people together, inspires creativity, gratitude, and celebration. You can truly feel it at Star Wars Celebration and this brief featurette managed to capture it, too.
For more on The Rise of Skywalker, peruse our recent articles below:
- First ‘Star Wars 9’ Trailer Teases the End of the New Trilogy
- ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Trailer Images Reveal the Final Chapter
- ‘Star Wars 9’ Title Explained: What Does “The Rise of Skywalker” Mean?