When we left off with Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, he'd Force Projected himself from Ahch-To all the way to Crait to distract Kylo Ren so that the Resistance survivors could escape and he could inspire others across the galaxy far, far away to join their cause. Unfortunately, the strain of using this ability across so many light years took its toll on the Jedi Master, and he faded into the Force while looking at Ahch-To's twin sunset. However, Luke's story isn't finished yet, as he's among the many major players returning for Episode IX, and a new rumor claims that when we see him in the movie, he'll demonstrate enough power to bring down a Star Destroyer.
Take this information with a grain of salt, but Express is reporting that there's a scene in Episode IX involving a big battle over a sandy planet where multiple Star Destroyers are in the sky and TIE Fighters are shooting down X-Wings. Then a black-cloaked figure appears in a rear shot and reaches out an arm, which has a mechanical hand. Luke Skywalker anyone? Spreading out his mechanical fingers, Luke channels the Force and causes one of the Star Destroyers to sink to the ground, resulting in a shock wave and sand flying everywhere.
Now at first you might think that this is Force Ghost Luke showing off how ridiculously powerful he is from beyond the grave. After all, Yoda conjured a bolt of Force lightning to destroy a tree in The Last Jedi, so clearly Force Ghosts can still use some, if not all, of their other Force abilities when appearing in the material world. However, thanks to The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, flashbacks are now fair game in the Star Wars movies, and this scene sounds like something that's already been depicted elsewhere. In the book Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi: The Legends of Luke Skywalker, which is part of the official Star Wars canon, one of the short stories takes place a year after Return of the Jedi on Jakku, Rey's old stomping grounds. One of the gunners aboard an Imperial Star Destroyer recalls seeing a hologram of Luke reaching out, and shortly thereafter, the ship crashed into the Jakku surface. That's right, it's heavily implied that the abandoned Star Destroyer we saw in The Force Awakens that Rey frequently scavenged was brought down by Luke nearly three decades earlier.
Again, this report is by no means official, so perhaps this scene won't even appear in Episode IX. Still, there have been reports that Mark Hamill shaved his beard for certain Episode IX scenes, so if you also throw in some of that digital de-aging, we could easily see Hamill play a younger version of Luke. On the other hand, perhaps Force Ghost Luke simply decided to go beardless, and we won't see any flashbacks of Luke set shortly after Return of the Jedi. But even if that's the case, don't discount the possibility that Force Ghost Luke still show off how much stronger he's become now that he's part of that mysterious energy field. After all, as Obi-Wan Kenobi told Darth Vader in A New Hope, "Strike me down and I will become more powerful than you can possibly imagine."
Star Wars: Episode IX will be released in theaters on December 20, 2019. Don't forget to look through our Star Wars movies guide to learn what else is in development for the space opera franchise.