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Star Wars: Episode IX — The Rise of Skywalker’s first trailer is here

Lucasfilm drops the first trailer at Star Wars Celebration 2019

Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

The first trailer for Star Wars: Episode IX — which we now know is titled Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker — is here. Director J.J. Abrams, Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy, and the cast of the final film in the Skywalker saga unveiled the trailer for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker during a panel at Star Wars Celebration on Friday.

Episode IX will pick up years after the events of Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Rey, Finn, Poe Dameron, and the remaining rebels of the Resistance have not only survived the onslaught from the evil First Order, but have reinforced their ranks. They’ll face Kylo Ren’s First Order forces, which are intent on wiping them out. They may also face an old foe, based on the new teaser, which shows wreckage from the Death Star and the ominous laugh of Emperor Palpatine.

Luke Skywalker’s voiceover in the teaser says — perhaps as a warning, perhaps as comfort to Rey — that “no one’s ever really gone.”

“This movie, it’s about the new generation, and what they’ve inherited, the light and the dark, and asking the question as they face the greatest evil ‘Are they prepared? Are they ready?’” Abrams said during today’s Episode IX panel.

Star Wars: Episode IX will hit theaters on Dec. 20, 2019, and stars Daisy Ridley as Rey, Adam Driver as Kylo Ren, John Boyega as Finn, Oscar Isaac as Poe Dameron, Lupita Nyong’o as Maz Kanata, Domhnall Gleeson as General Hux, Kelly Marie Tran as Rose Tico, Joonas Suotamo as Chewbacca, Billie Lourd as Lieutenant Connix, Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker, Anthony Daniels as C-3PO, and Billy Dee Williams, who reprises his role as Lando Calrissian. Carrie Fisher appears as General Leia Organa, with director J.J. Abrams using previously unreleased footage shot for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. New to the cast of Episode IX are Naomi Ackie as Jannah, Richard E. Grant, and Keri Russell.

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