Next December's release of Star Wars: Episode VIII promises to be one of the biggest openings of 2017, as well as one of the biggest films for both Disney and the Star Wars legacy. With Rian Johnson's film in the can, and awaiting the post-production trek to release day, details are bound to start leaking out about some of the more mysterious elements of the film. For instance, take the role of Episode VIII cast member Kelly Marie Tran, which has up until now been a complete mystery. But after today, we have some information that at least gives us some speculation to work with.
According to a tip from a Star Wars-centric rumor blog, I Was Raised To Do One Thing, Tran's role is that of an "information broker" that shares a scene with Finn. Theorize to be named Aya, she flirts with John Boyega's Finn as she provides him with some sort of information that ultimately leads to an armed pursuit between First Order Stormtroopers and Finn. The setting of this scene is describe as the fanciest bar in the Star Wars universe, and Kelly Marie Tran's screen time is described as, "more screen time than Max von Sydow [had] in [The Force Awakens], but less than Oscar Isaac." So with these little details, we can start to spin out into what this means for Star Wars: Episode VIII.
First, it sounds like no matter how much he's joked about it, Rian Johnson has not put John Boyega's Finn in a coma, or any sort of vegetative state whatsoever. So the events of Star Wars: The Force Awakens have only temporarily incapacitated the former Stormtrooper, who has obviously run afoul of The First Order in his latest adventure. The information he's seeking out is not very clear, as The First Order has already lost a massive weapon of mass destruction in Starkiller Base. Perhaps Finn's recon mission is to make sure that Supreme Leader Snoke isn't making the same mistake Emperor Palpatine did by making a second, even bigger mistake.
Second, it sounds like Kelly Marie Tran's character in Star Wars: Episode VIII will be extremely connected when it comes to The First Order. So, obviously, there's a chance that while her role is one of a more supporting nature in Rian Johnson's follow-up, it could be of greater importance in Star Wars: Episode IX. With the battle against General Hux, Kylo Ren, and their toadies obviously set to sprawl into the presumably final entry to the new trilogy, an information broker like the mysterious Aya could be just what the forces of The Resistance need to keep themselves alive. With possibly the greatest threat to The Resistance awaiting in Colin Trevorrow's entry in the Star Wars canon, Tran could become a very important player in that galaxy far, far away.
Of course, with Star Wars: Episode VIII set to open on December 15, 2017, there's plenty of time for this rumor to be confirmed or debunked. So in the meantime, we'll keep our eyes and ears open for any new information on all things related to Star Wars: Episode VIII.