Star Wars: Episode VIII is almost a year away, and with the anticipation for our return to a galaxy far, far away comes a lot of questions that need to be answered. While we normally search for those answers and update their status in our "What We Know So Far" features, there are still bigger questions that we feel need to be raised outside of those confines, so as to maximize their importance. It's with this in mind that we present to you the following 10 questions we really want the answers to, based on things that have been rumored or come to light involving the production of Rian Johnson's Star Wars: Episode VIII. Starting with an obvious one:
What Will The Title Be?
Pretty much any Star Wars film after the first one has had the world asking the biggest question of all: what's the title going to be? A title says everything about a film, and with Tale of the Jedi Temple and The Order of the Dark Side being the rumored contenders, one of those two just might be the words on fans' lips until next December's release date. Though, to be fair, neither of those titles sound like they'd actually pass muster, but then again, neither did Attack of the Clones.
How Dark Is Rian Johnson Going To Go With This One?
If you're looking for a light, sunshiny movie, Rian Johnson isn't the director you call. It's not that all of his films are depressing, seeing as The Brothers Bloom is his "cheeriest" effort to date. But the fact still remains that Johnson is a very grounded and gritty sci-fi director who loves exploring the darker side of life and its many pitfalls. With the middle installment of the Star Wars trilogies tending to be the darkest installments by natural law, we have to wonder just how deep Episode VIII will go. While it's still a Star Wars movie, there's plenty of room for dark and depressing things to occur.
What Will Luke's First Words Be?
Still mad about Luke Skywalker having not a scrap of dialogue in Star Wars: The Force Awakens? It's ok... a lot of people are (including Mark Hamill, himself). Which means that those first key words spoken by the exiled Jedi are going to matter quite a bit when Star Wars: Episode VIII opens up. As the next film will be starting right after The Force Awakens, it's assumed that Luke will break his silence in the film's first post-crawl moments. Which means that whatever he says will have been hyped up with a two year waiting period. Though current rumors aren't disappointing, we'd still think Luke's first words in the new Star Wars canon would be something a little more prophetic than what is being reported. We'll find out soon enough.
What Is Kelly Marie Tran's Role?
When the cast list for Star Wars: Episode VIII broke, there were some surprises and some confirmed luminaries rumored to be in the mix. One of the former was the casting of actress Kelly Marie Tran, who up until now has had scattered web series and TV credits on her resume. As if Star Wars casting news wasn't mysterious enough, this exciting newcomer's entry into the galaxy far, far away has a lot of people wondering just who she'll be playing, or what she'll be doing in this new universe. Speculation is that she'll be a comedic relief character, and many rumors have paired her with John Boyega in the plot, but nothing has been confirmed and anything goes in this franchise.
Who Are Benicio Del Toro And Laura Dern Playing?
Even more exciting is the speculation about who Benicio Del Toro and Laura Dern will be playing in Star Wars: Episode VIII, considering they're two of the last people you'd expect to find in a Star Wars film. That's not saying they wouldn't rock their respective positions, especially with Del Toro being tipped as a "man in black" style villain and Dern pegged as an "Effie Trinket" type with pink hair. Considered two of the best actors working on the film circuit, any part would be a joy in their hands. We're just hoping it's a little more than a five minute speaking role, followed by a random disappearance or joyless death scene.
What's Snoke's Next Move?
Grand Leader Snoke, the mysterious guru of sorts behind the First Order, is a mysterious man. (Man? I guess that's another question...) However, an even bigger question would be what the shadowy figures is up to, now that his first plan to use Kylo Ren and Starkiller Base to assert himself upon the galaxy has gone up in smoke. Snoke Smoke. Trademark that. Hopefully, he'll have a more original idea than "build it again, only bigger, and with more planets," because a planet killing weapon just seems like a bit of a non-starter.
Is Rey Going To Turn To The Dark Side?
There was a moment towards the end of Star Wars: The Force Awakens where Rey seemed to give into her darker tendencies while fighting Kylo Ren. Since that moment, a lot of people have theorized that there may be a grand misdirection at work in the Star Wars galaxy, one that would lead Rey to be the new First Order mercenary and Kylo Ren to revert back to Ben Solo, and fight for the good of the galaxy. It's extremely unclear if such events are unfolding, but we could definitely see her tempted by the powers of the Dark Side, as every Force sensitive person has been, at one point or another. A full heel turn though is something we'd have to wait and see about.
When's Finn Going To Wake Up?
Another mystery set up by the final act of Star Wars: The Force Awakens is the condition of John Boyega's Finn, as he's left in an unconscious state the last time we see him. While it's been a subject of some light humor, we have to wonder just how much of Star Wars: Episode VIII will see Finn snoozing away in his recovery suite, as he got pretty banged up during his fight with Kylo Ren. However, considering he's one of the franchise's young leads, we'd assume that the first thing we'll see after Rey has a heart to heart with Luke would be Finn up and walking, waiting to be filled in on the end of the last movie.
Is Joseph Gordon-Levitt Going To Cameo?
Rian Johnson and Joseph Gordon-Levitt are movie-making brothers. It's hard to tear the two apart, and technically, Levitt has been in every Johnson film, thanks to a "blink and you'll miss it" cameo in The Brothers Bloom. Seeing as there's been no major announcement of the actor joining Star Wars as a major player, we have to wonder if there's a good chance that Joseph Gordon-Levitt will, at the very least, pop up somewhere in Star Wars: Episode VIII. Considering it's what all the cool kids do in the modern history of Star Wars films, and the history between the two collaborators, we'd like to say yes. But then again, we're kind of wishfully thinking that "yes" real hard.
How Will Episode VIII Set Up The End Of The Skywalker Saga?
With all of the discussion of the Skywalker Saga possibly coming to an end after Star Wars: Episode IX, there will have to be some ground work laid down by Star Wars: Episode VIII. Should this be the decision made at January's Lucasfilm summit, the end of an era will have to surely have some sort of ties in next December's offering. If that's the case, we wouldn't bank on Luke and/or Leia making it out alive, and we'd probably put Kylo Ren down on the hit list for the final, Colin Trevorrow helmed entry, as that'd pretty much wipe the slate clean of all Skywalker DNA. Unless, of course, there is another...
Star Wars: Episode VIII will arrive in theaters on December 15, 2017; with Rogue One: A Star Wars Story helping keep fans in order upon its December 16th release.