STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER Licensing Image Reveals A New Look At Adam Driver's Kylo Ren

STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER Licensing Image Reveals A New Look At Adam Driver's Kylo Ren

STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER Licensing Image Reveals A New Look At Adam Driver's Kylo Ren

A new promo image for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker has been spotted at this year's Licensing Expo, and it reveals a fresh look at the repaired helmet that will be worn by Adam Driver's Kylo Ren...

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker serves as the Skywalker Saga's final chapter ,and there's understandably a lot of excitement surrounding the J.J. Abrams helmed release. 

With The Emperor seemingly set to return and some long overdue answers hopefully on the way for a lot of lingering questions, it's fair to say that expectations are high and there's a lot of speculation about what comes next for Kylo Ren, in particular. The Supreme Leader of the First Order may have repaired his helmet, but is redemption in store for Ben Solo? 

That's one of many theories surrounding The Rise of Skywalker, and now a new promo image has been spotted which once again puts the spotlight on Ren's startling new look. 

This doesn't reveal much beyond a fresh shot of that helmet, but it's fair to say that its return is definitely a good thing, especially as it's a big part of what makes Darth Vader's grandson so iconic (Rian Johnson's decision to destroy it made for a cool moment in The Last Jedi, but it wasn't welcomed by fans).

What do you hope to see from the character in The Rise of Skywalker?

Hit the "View List" button for a recap of Star Wars:
The Rise of Skywalker
reveals from the latest issue of Vanity Fair!

The End For The Sith...Or Jedi?

It's pretty obvious that the stakes in The Rise of Skywalker will be high, but Vanity Fair's sources have dropped a bombshell which may completely re-evaluate how we look at this final chapter. 

Apparently, the movie is finally going to bring an end to the millennia-long conflict between the Jedi Order and the Sith, and that means one of these groups is going to be destroyed for good. 

Star Wars Isn't The Marvel Cinematic Universe

Due to some serious troubles behind the scenes, Lucasfilm delivered its first commercial disappointment with Solo: A Star Wars Story. That led to Disney changing its entire approach to the franchise and Kathleen Kennedy has now shed some light on what that means moving forward. 

"I think there is a larger expectation that Disney has," she admits when asked about producing five Star Wars movies since the acquisition back in 2012. "On the other hand, though, I think that Disney is very respectful of what this is, and right from the beginning we talked about the fragility of this form of storytelling. Because it’s something that means so much to fans that you can’t turn this into some kind of factory approach."

"You can’t even do what Marvel does, necessarily, where you pick characters and build new franchises around those characters,"
she concluded. "This needs to evolve differently."

The Biggest Challenge Faced By J.J. Abrams

Rian Johnson made a lot of unexpected creative decisions in The Last Jedi and it's now up to Abrams to pick up where he left off. However, that's not the biggest challenge he faces with The Rise of Skywalker; instead, he needs to deliver a satisfying conclusion.

"That’s the challenge of this movie," the filmmaker explains. "It wasn’t just to make one film that as a stand-alone experience would be thrilling, and scary, and emotional, and funny, but one that if you were to watch all nine of the films, you’d feel like, Well, of course—that!" In other words, it definitely sounds like he's planning to bring things full circle with this movie. 

Bringing Back Carrie Fisher's General Leia

Carrie Fisher tragically passed away quite some time before production started on this movie, and that left Abrams in a very difficult position, especially as fans want a decent ending to her character's story arc. It's a good thing the director remembered some footage of the actress he had left over from his time working alongside her on The Force Awakens

"It’s hard to even talk about it without sounding like I’m being some kind of cosmic spiritual goofball," he says, "but it felt like we suddenly had found the impossible answer to the impossible question." Writing scenes around old footage, Abrams was able to fit Leia's dialogue into new contexts and found a new place for the beloved actress in this final movie. 

"There are moments in this movie where Carrie is there, and I really do feel there is an element of the uncanny, spiritual, you know, classic Carrie, that it would have happened this way, because somehow it worked. And I never thought it would."

The Knights Of Ren Are Coming


As those official images made clear, the Knights of Ren are indeed set to factor into The Rise of Skywalker and the movie will finally explore Kylo Ren's relationship with them. But what about the budding relationship he appears to have forged with Rey since they first met? 

"[He] had been forging this maybe-bond with Rey," Adam Driver explains, "and it kind of ends with the question in the air: is he going to pursue that relationship, or when the door of her ship goes up, does that also close that camaraderie that they were maybe forming?"

Rey Is A Full-Fledged Jedi Now

At the end of The Last Jedi, we got a taste of Rey's powers and learned that she had stolen the sacred Jedi texts so she could learn the ways of the Force. Well, Vanity Fair's sources reveal that when we catch up with her in this movie, her training is pretty much complete. It also sounds like her story arc will revolve around her trying to bring back the Jedi Order Luke tried and failed to resurrect.

Kylo Ren And Rey's "Force Bond"

Driver has already teased the developing relationship between Kylo Ren and Rey, but the magazine adds that the Force connection first introduced in The Last Jedi will continue to factor into the plot and it will run even deeper than we thought. Does that mean they're related, or could romance be on the cards? For now, that remains a mystery. 

Daisy Ridley, however, has some thoughts of her own when it comes to how her character perceives the First Order's new Supreme Leader. "I think there’s a part of Rey that’s like, dude, you f*cking had it all, you had it all," the actress explains. "That was always a big question during filming: you had it all and you let it go."

Finn Finally Finds His Place


Finn was doubting his place in the Resistance the last time we saw him but his sacrifice play at the end of The Last Jedi seemingly made it clear that the former Stormtrooper is finally ready to be a hero, a sentiment John Boyega echoes. "I think he’s just an active member of the Resistance now," the actor confirms.

"Episode Eight, he couldn’t decide what team he was fighting for. But since then he’s made a clear decision." That should make fans of the character happy, especially after the tepid response to much of his story arc in Johnson's middle chapter in this trilogy.

One Year Will Have Passed

The Rise of Skywalker picks up a year after the events of the previous movie, and that's led to some big changes for Poe Dameron. 

"There has been a bit of shared history that you haven’t seen," Oscar Isaac teases. "Whereas in the other films, Poe is this kind of lone wolf, now he’s really part of a group. They’re going out and going on missions and have a much more familiar dynamic now." Seeing these characters together again promises to be one of the best parts of this movie, and honestly feels overdue at this stage.

The Movie's Newcomers


So, while we'll spend plenty of time with familiar faces, The Rise of Skywalker will also introduce some new faces. As you saw in the aforementioned gallery, they include Keri Russell's Zorri Bliss, Richard E. Grant's Allegiant General Pryde, and Naomi Ackie's mysterious Jannah. 

The site also mentions a tiny one-wheeled droid called D-O and a "large banana-slug alien named Klaud." Common sense says we can expect a noteworthy actor to be hidden beneath that costume!

J.J. Abrams Starts Taking Some Risks

The Force Awakens came under fire for following the same blueprint as A New Hope, so Abrams now seems keen to do something different with this finale. "Working on nine, I found myself approaching it slightly differently," he admits. "Which is to say that, on seven, I felt beholden to Star Wars in a way that was interesting—I was doing what to the best of my ability I felt Star Wars should be."

This won't be a remake of Return of the Jedi, then, and Abrams adds that he found himself doing something different with the camera angles, lighting, and even story. "It felt slightly more renegade; it felt slightly more like, you know, F*ck it, I’m going to do the thing that feels right because it does, not because it adheres to something."

The Movie's New Planets

Vanity Fair's cover story reveals two new planets: the desert planes of Pasaana which is "on the edge of the galaxy" and the "snow-dusted" Kijimi, the home of the shadowy Thieves' Quarter.

Not much more than that was revealed and we don't know how they'll factor into the story, but it's definitely refreshing to think that we'll be visiting more new locations in this Galaxy Far, Far Away.
Many thanks to Vanity Fair for the quotes and information used in this article.
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