Everything That Happened at the Star Wars Celebration ‘Last Jedi’ Panel
Star Wars: The Last Jedi opens in theaters in just about eight months, but we still hadn’t gotten a trailer for the film — until now. This morning at Star Wars Celebration, the cast and crew of The Last Jedi unveiled the brand new trailer (and an absolutely gorgeous teaser poster) to the assembled throng of Star Wars faithful.
If you want to watch the panel here’s the video from Orlando:
And if you missed anything from the panel, here are all the highlights:
-The surprise host of the panel was Josh Gad, who has been hounding Daisy Ridley with questions about The Last Jedi for months, who talked about his own Star Wars obsession went back to when he was four years old. “There is nothing like that kind of anticipation,” that Gad said he felt for The Phantom Menace back in 1999.
-Gad then welcomed Kathleen Kennedy and Last Jedi director Rian Johnson (with his camera) to the stage. “We took a big risk when we did Rogue One,” Kennedy said, thanking fans for their support for a different kind of Star Wars film. Rian Johnson then got a standing ovation for hanging out (for over four hours) with fans who waited out overnight to get into this panel.
-“Just thinking about what this means to all of us, I started to get scared,” Johnson admitted about taking over the franchise on its 40th anniversary, calling them “the best fan family in the world.”
-The film is in post-production, still in editing, “But we’re far along.” “He is on his way to standing alongside many of the great filmmakers that I’ve had the opportunity to work with,” Kennedy said of Johnson’s work on the film. “He has an amazing uniqueness to what he does,” noting that he is both the writer and the director of The Last Jedi. “He writes amazingly fierce and independent women,” Kennedy added.
-“For me, growing up, Pinewood Studios was like Camelot,” Johnson said of the studio where they filmed The Last Jedi, and has been home to many of the greatest films of all time (including the other Star Wars films).
-They filmed up and down the coast of Ireland with a “big unruly film crew” and shot beautiful landscapes for The Last Jedi. Johnson said he realized he had a front row seat to all the secrets, and so he was constantly taking photos the entire time. In fact he was the only guy on set besides the official photographer that he took. He ended up taking “thouands” of pictures on set. The screen showed images of Oscar Isaac on set with Carrie Fisher, and Daisy Ridley with a lightsaber.
-“Carrie is remarkable in the movie,” Kennedy said. Johnson talking about sitting with her four hours going over the script, having ad-lib sessions, furiously writing notes and then coming out of it with lines to add to the script.
-Next, Daisy Ridley joined the panel. Gad then peppered her with questions about Rey and her relationship to Luke or Obi-Wan. “You’re like the Madonna of Jakku,” Gad quipped.
-“What I can say is in The Last Jedi we go deeper into Rey’s story, and what is very apparent … is Rey has a certain expectation as to what she might be getting from Luke.” Ridley said. “It’s difficult when you meet your heroes. It’s not always quite what you expect,” referring to Rey finally getting to talk to Luke Skywalker.
-Ridley credited the creators of The Force Awakens for making Rey such a great character; Johnson in turn made sure to point out that a lot of the parts that people like about Rey is what comes from Ridley herself.
-Next up was BB-8, making a grand return to Star Wars Celebration, who chatted with Gad in droid. (He provided translation.) He complimented Johnson’s film Looper and refused to answer any questions about who is the title character of The Last Jedi.
-Johnson promised more BB-8 hijinks in The Last Jedi. “He’s the Buster Keaton of this movie.”
-John Boyega joined the panel, “Finn definitely stood up for himself at the end of The Force Awakens,” Boyega said, before promising Finn will be back for The Last Jedi. (Obviously.)
-The next guest was a new actor playing a new character: Kelly Marie Tran who plays Rose, a maintenance worker in the Resistance. Tran had to keep her casting secret from everyone, even her family. “I told them I was doing an indie movie in Canada,” Tran revealed.
-Johnson talked about Rose. “She’s pretty rad … for me, growing up, watching Luke Skywalker get pulled out of wherever he is and be this unlikely hero. The notion that any of us can step out and turn into a hero, that’s where the character of Rose comes from. She’s not a soldier, she’s not looking to be a hero, but she gets pulled into this adventure with Finn.”
-Mark Hamill returned to the Star Wars Celebration stage. Gad asked if he could confirm that Luke actually spoke in The Last Jedi. He gave a long answer about meeting Rian Johnson, and complimenting him for admitting his terror about taking over the franchise.
-Gad asked what it was like getting back into character. “There’s a lot of mystery about him, even in the film,” saying that a lot of what happened to Luke between the trilogies is left unsaid and could possibly be added in by comics and books later. Kennedy then interrupted to reassure the fans that Luke is “significantly important” to The Last Jedi.
-Hamill joked about his training for the film, and how watching The Force Awakens he half hoped Luke would be the one standing there when the lightsaber jumped out of the snow into Rey’s hand at the end of The Force Awakens.
-“I’ve lost all credibility with the public on social media, because I lie all the time,” said Hamill, noting how he had to obscure the size of his role in The Force Awakens. So don’t trust anything he says about Luke and The Last Jedi on Twitter.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi opens in theaters on December 15. Keep checking ScreenCrush throughout the weekend for lots more from #SWCO.