The end of a cinematic era is almost upon us. This December will bring forth Star Wars: Episode IX, which is not only the final chapter of the current Star Wars sequel trilogy, but also concluding the Skywalker Saga. Episode IX kicked off principal photography back in August, and today production has officially wrapped. To celebrate the occasion, director and co-writer J.J. Abrams dropped this photo of three of the main Episode IX actors together in warm embrace.
Emulating the original trio of Luke Skywalker, Leia Organa and Han Solo in the original Star Wars trilogy, we’ve watched Daisey Ridley’s Rey, John Boyega’s Finn and Oscar Isaac’s Poe Dameron fight the forces of evil in the current Star Wars trilogy. So it’s rather touching and appropriate that J.J. Abrams chose to commemorate Star Wars: Episode IX finishing its shoot by showing the actors together on set, with the crew in the background. This is actually only Abrams’ second Episode IX-related tweet, as his very first tweet kicked off the start of principal photography on August 1, 2018. This is in sharp contrast to how Solo: A Star Wars Story director Ron Howard used social media to keep people apprised of how that standalone movie was coming along.
Of course, it should be noted that while numerous behind-the-scenes Star Wars: Episode IX have leaked online, this is our first official look at the next Star Wars movie actually showing the actors. Finn’s hair is longer than it was in his previous appearances (maybe Poe’s is too though it’s hard to tell), and Rey’s hair is done up similarly to how she’s typically worn it while on Jakku in The Force Awakens. Then there’s the fact that they’re in a desert, an environment frequently shown in the Star Wars franchise. There’s no word yet on whether this means we’re returning to Tatooine or Jakku in Episode IX, or if the characters will be on a brand new desert planet, but let’s hope they’ve properly hydrated.
With 10 months to go until Star Wars: Episode IX’s release, Disney and Lucasfilm haven’t released any official plot details yet. All that’s been confirmed is that Episode IX will pick up one year after The Last Jedi, which saw The Resistance being nearly wiped out by The First Order. Still, with the next Star Wars Celebration occurring in April, ideally some concrete details (including the title) and some footage will arrive in the near future.
Star Wars: Episode IX will also see Adam Driver, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Kelly Marie Tran, Mark Hamill, Joonas Suotamo, Anthony Daniels, and Billy Dee Williams returning to reprising their respective roles, while unused footage of Carrie Fisher from The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi will allow Leia to appear as well. As for Episode IX’s new faces, they include Naomie Ackie, Richard E. Grant, Keri Russell, Dominic Monaghan and Matt Smith.
Star Wars: Episode IX opens in theaters on December 20, so stay tuned to CinemaBlend for continuing coverage. For now, look through our 2019 release schedule to learn what other movies are coming out this year.