Begun, the Star Wars: Episode VIII promotion has.
The next movie in the Skywalker Saga of Star Wars has a long time between now and its release (over 330 days still to go), but with Rogue One technically in the rearview mirror (go see it, or see it again if you haven't, though!), Episode VIII is beginning to dominate the conversation.
Spunout from their 2017 movie preview, USA Today chatted with writer-director Rian Johnson about his upcoming Star Wars movie, and bucking the trend of extreme secrecy at Lucasfilm, he actually gave some big teases!
After previously teasing the relationship between Rey and Luke and major questions being answered, Johnson offered up these five additional looks into the future of Star Wars.
Episode VIII Will Be Fun
Rian Johnson, being both writer and director, has a lot of control over Star Wars: Episode VIII, and he's determined to keep it fun. There's a trend, thanks in large part to Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back, to make the second movie in a trilogy the darkest edition. Not so with Episode VIII, which he hopes has a fun tone and strikes a balance in the storytelling.
"I want it to be a blast and to be funny," Johnson said, "and to be a ride the way The Force Awakens and the original Star Wars movies were."
You'll Learn Much More About the Newbies
Finn, Poe, and Rey all had fans celebrating for various reasons in their introduction in The Force Awakens, but also put forth a lot of quetsions. While Poe Dameron has his own comicbook series now allowing for a deeper look into his recent past, Johnson wanted to explore not just their pasts more deeply, but also their present.
"I wanted to know more about each of them, and that doesn't just mean information or backstory. Figure out what's the most difficult thing each of them could be challenged with now - let's throw that at them and dig into what really makes them tick by seeing how they handle that."
Rey's Family Ties Will Be Explored
When Rey met Luke Skywalker at the end of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, it was with a mixture of hesitation, anticipation, and downright wonder. That's something that Johnson took away from it, as well, and wants to explore.
"[She goes to Ahch-To] both not knowing what's going to happen and also having a lot of expectations in her head about how this is going to go. It very much feels like what we all go through in adolescence, the dawning of this new chapter of our lives," Johnson said. "[The Family themes] are a huge part of especially Rey's character, something that wasa really powerful part of her setup and something I really wanted to dig into with this."
The Primary Question is "What's up with Luke?"
"What's going on with Luke Skywalker?" is what Rian Johnson hopes to ask through Star Wars: Episode VIII. It's a good question to build a film around. If The Force Awakens was "where is Luke?" and this one is "what's Luke going through?" that may give us a clue to Episode IX as well. "I'm approaching it with a take that I hope feels honest and real and is going to be interesting to folks and make sense," he said. Sounds like all those questions about what he was doing on Ahch-To, why he abandoned the idea of training Force users as Jedi, and much more will be answered, or at least asked out loud.
Yes, There Is An Episode VIII Title
Rian Johnson has had a title for Star Wars: Episode VIII since he started work on it.
"It was in the very first draft I wrote. I'll blurt it out right now!" he said. "All in good time."
Time to go looking through those 10 or so rumored titles, because they could be real, after all. When will we find out the title to the film? Possibly as early as the Super Bowl, when many are expecting the first teaser trailer, but most definitely ahead of Star Wars Celebration Orlando in April.