Today Lucasfilm announced the eighth installment in the Star Wars franchise would be called Star Wars: The Last Jedi. While many fans are scratching their heads trying to figure out what that could mean — and what the bold, red lettering used for the title blocks could imply — one of the biggest questions that remains is where’s the first trailer?
It may seem odd to ask for a trailer when the movie is still practically a year away. When compared to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the seventh movie in the main Star Wars franchise, however, the trailer for The Last Jedi is already late.
The first teaser for The Force Awakens was released on Nov. 28, 2014. That’s more than a full year before the movie was released into theaters on Dec. 18, 2015. Between that first 88-second teaser and the release of the film, there would be a few more official trailers and a plethora of TV spots. But for the The Last Jedi, Lucasfilm and Disney haven’t even released a first teaser, and there are only 10 months and 22 days until the movie is out. Or, in more dramatic terms, there are only 322 days left!
There are a couple of reasons why the first trailer may not be out yet. Unlike The Force Awakens, which was the first Star Wars movie to be released since Episode III: Revenge of the Sith in 2005, The Last Jedi was preceded by Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Rogue One marked the first ever stand-alone anthology movie Lucasfilm released, and as Kathleen Kennedy, CEO of the company, previously said, there was a lot riding on its success. If Rogue One underperformed at the box office, it could put the future of stand-alone Star Wars movies in jeopardy.
Could Lucasfilm have delayed the first teaser for The Last Jedi to not take away any coverage of Rogue One ahead of its release? Possibly. With Rogue One officially crossing $1 billion at the worldwide box office, concerns about how stand-alone Star Wars movies would be received by audiences should be assuaged, but does that mean we’ll get a trailer anytime soon?
According to Kennedy herself, probably not. While promoting Rogue One in England just before the film was released, Kennedy said fans shouldn’t expect to see anything about The Last Jedi until closer to spring.
“We’re giving this a little bit of breathing room,” Kennedy said.
There is a chance, however small it may be, that the first teaser will air during the Super Bowl. When The Force Awakens title was announced, it was three weeks until the first teaser hit. The Super Bowl is two weeks away, and brings in a sizable audience that Disney and Lucasfilm would want for a big premiere. It’s not the first time the companies would use a football game for a trailer debut, either. In October 2015, the companies released a trailer for The Force Awakens during a Monday Night Football game before posting it on the Star Wars YouTube channel.
While that’s a distinct possibility, more information should be released this spring. Considering that Star Wars Celebration, one of the largest Star Wars conventions in the world that’s hosted by Lucasfilm, takes place in April, it’s likely fans will see most of the footage around then.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi will be released on Dec. 15.
The silly way The Force Awakens almost began
Want the latest news, videos and podcasts sent to your inbox once every weekday? Then sign up for the Polygon Newsletter below.