There's arguably no film franchise quite as popular as Star Wars. George Lucas' colorful space opera has been enthralling moviegoers for decades, with generations of fans eager to see what comes next from the galaxy far, far away. Disney has been breaking new ground through projects like standalone films and the upcoming live-action series on Disney+.
But all eyes are on what J.J Abrams will do with Episode IX, which is set to complete the Skywalker Saga forever, as well as the trilogy he began back with The Force Awakens. Almost nothing is known about the upcoming blockbuster, including the film's title, which is still being kept under wraps. But a new possible title just hit the internet, and it sounds like a great choice: Balance Of The Force.
This possible title comes to us from Reddit, as one user was apparently privy to the code in the official Star Wars website. The post shows a future logo for the site, revealing the title and encouraging Star Wars fans to see J.J. Abrams' upcoming blockbuster in IMAX. It's important to note this is far from confirmed, although the title Balance of the Force is enough to get most self-respecting Star Wars fans hyped for the upcoming threequel.
Considering Episode IX will wrap up a story that was spread out among 9 movies and decades of filmmaking, the pressure is on for J.J. Abrams to deliver a satisfying conclusion to the narrative. The Jedi Order strove to bring balance to the force, especially during George Lucas' prequel trilogy. Anakin Skywalker was meant to bring that balance, as the chosen one. Of course, we all saw how that ended up in Revenge of the Sith.
Still, J.J. Abrams possibly bringing balance to the force in Episode IX is an extremely exciting concept, if Balance Of The Force ends up being the real name of the upcoming blockbuster. The title brings a level of importance and finality to the movie, which would likely help its box office performance, and encourage even casual fans to shell out cash to see Abrams' threequel in theaters.
Box office performance is going to be very important for the next few Star Wars releases to come from the Disney machine. The Last Jedi did make a ton of money domestically, but the criticism against the film may have cost the franchise some fans ahead of Episode IX. The most recent standalone Solo: A Star Wars Story ended up being a box office flop, as Ron Howard failed to complete the project started by Chris Miller and Phil Lord in a way that resonated with audiences.
As such, Episode IX and its possible new title will have to prove how viable the Star Wars franchise truly is. Considering the plans for Rian Johnson's trilogy and the franchise's small screen projects, it's clear that Lucasfilm has no plans to slow down anytime soon. But one has to think that Kathleen Kennedy and company will take the success of J.J. Abrams' upcoming sequel into account when planning for the future
Narratively, there are a ton of threads for J.J Abrams to pull from for Episode IX, regardless of its official title. The director will get to complete the story he began with The Force Awakens, wrapping up the three film narrative for characters he created like Rey, Finn, Poe, and Kylo Ren.
But Episode IX has the added pressure of being the finale in a nine movie series. The OG Star Wars fans have been following the space opera for decades, and are eager to see how George Lucas’ iconic franchise ends. This includes the fate of Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker, Carrie Fisher’s General Leia, and Billy Dee Williams’ Lando Calrissian, who are all set to appear in Episode IX.
If Balance Of The Force ends up being the true title of Episode IX, one has to wonder how J.J. Abrams will craft the story in order to achieve said balance. The Jedi prophecy indicated that one Force Sensitive person would bring that balance, with the prequels indicated it would be Anakin Skywalker.
While Anakin ultimately pulled The Force and the Galaxy into a place of darkness, perhaps the prophecy was always meant to be another young Jedi. Both Rey and Kylo Ren seem like possible choices, as smart money says Adam Driver’s villainous character will be saved before Episode IX concludes.
Of course, there’s no guarantee that Balance of the Force is in fact the title of Episode IX, with the prequel prophecy not necessary on J.J. Abrams’ radar with his next Star Wars movie. There’s already enough narrative threads to pull at, as the fate of the galaxy and its iconic residents must be decided.
Episode IX will include a time jump from The Last Jedi, allowing the state of The Resistance and its characters to change offscreen. Finn and Rey will finally be reunited, as General Leia (brought to life with old footage of Carrie Fisher) continues to fight against The First Order.
Kylo Ren’s morality will also likely be a centerpiece of the upcoming movie, as he was shown displaying some vulnerability and empathy through his shared visions with Rey in The Last Jedi. And while he ultimately ascended to the role of Supreme Leader, Rey seems determined to bring him to The Light eventually.
Fans are also eager to see Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker return to the silver screen, after his jaded appearance in The Last Jedi. While Luke perished after his conflict with Kylo Ren on Crait, smart money says he’ll appear as a Force Ghost in the next movie, hopefully alongside Yoda. Fans were delighted to see the little green Jedi Master pop up in The Last Jedi, especially since he was a classic puppet, rather than a CGI rendering. Since Force Ghosts are back on the table, it seems like the perfect macguffin to continue featuring Luke Skywalker.
All will (hopefully) be revealed when Episode IX finally arrives in theaters on December 20th, 2019. Of course, CinemaBlend will keep you updated on if/when the film's title is officially revealed. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.
Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.
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