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Star Wars: The Force Awakens left us with many, many questions. While we expect many of our questions to be answered in future films, the fact is that a few of them already have answers. While most of Star Wars' expanded universe is no longer canon, The Force Awakens has begun to create much of this content themselves. If we look into some of this additional material, that has the ability to go into more detail, a few of our questions get answered.
Who was Lor San Tekka?While his name is never even mentioned onscreen, Lor San Tekka is the first character we meet in The Force Awakens. He has the piece of the map to The First Jedi Temple that gets the ball rolling on the entire film. According to Star Wars: The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary, he was basically a galactic cartographer who worked with the New Republic to map out the far reaches of space. This helps give us some idea how he had the map to begin with. He may have even been the one who made it, though we don’t have that answer yet.
Why Does Finn Crack Under the Pressure In His First Battle?When we first see FN-2187, he watches another Stormtrooper die in front of him. He freezes and is unable to fight. But why does a Stormtrooper who’s been raised from near birth to fight find himself unable to do so? According to the book Before the Awakening the dead trooper was called Slip and he was part of a squad with Finn for some time previously. Slip wasn’t just a soldier, but a friend. Interestingly, FN-2199, aka "TR-8R" was part of the same squad, which is why he takes Finn’s desertion so personally.
How Did Maz Kanata Find Luke’s Lightsaber?For this one, the movie actually does give us a single sentence of evidence. Maz tells Rey that she’s no Jedi but she can feel the Force. Once again the visual dictionary comes to our aid to fill in the gaps. Apparently, Maz is so Force sensitive that she could have become a Jedi, she simply chose not to and she, in fact, hid her powers until after the death of the Emperor. She started to use these abilities to track down relics strong in The Force. This eventually led her to Cloud City, where she found the missing saber.
How Did Kylo Ren Get Off The Planet Alive?General Hux is instructed to get off the planet, and to bring Kylo Ren with him, but Ren is lying half dead in a forest in the middle of who knows where. In the novelization of the film, it is specified that Ren has some sort of GPS device in his belt, allowing Hux to go straight to him. Interestingly, it also says he considered grabbing Rey and the also injured Finn, only those weren’t the orders by Supreme Leader Snoke.
Where Did R2-D2 Get The Map?This one is more than a little frustrating. This detail isn’t located in a novel or comic book. In fact, even if you’d read and watched everything that is currently canon, you wouldn’t have this detail. Instead, it’s simply come out as part of interviews that the writers have done since the film’s release. Way back in the original Star Wars film, R2-D2 plugs into the Death Star in order to figure out how to deactivate the tractor beam. In doing so, he learns the location of Princess Leia and a lot more. He apparently got the map as well. When BB-8 speaks to the mostly sleeping R2, he asks about the map and this causes the old unit to start digging through his backup data, where he eventually discovers he has the rest after all.