Star Wars: Episode 9 release date, trailer, title, and everything you need to know about Rise of Skywalker

Star Wars Episode 9 plot

Finn and Poe Dameron in Star Wars Episode 9

Finn and Poe Dameron in Star Wars Episode 9

(Image credit: Disney/Lucasfilm)

With the Star Wars: Episode 9 trailer containing precious few clues about the plot of The Rise of Skywalker, you have to play detective to work out what's going to happen in the movie. 

Some reliable intel came from the Disney shareholders meeting, where a lucky few were given a sneak peek at footage from the movie – we’re not doubting that these tweets from one of the guests are accurate, but we're not convinced they contain any massive revelations. 

The fact that Poe and Finn are sighted together in the Millennium Falcon cockpit certainly echoes Oscar Isaac’s comments to Metro that he's spent more time with John Boyega on Star Wars: Episode 9 “I think the one thing I can say [about The Rise of Skywalker] is that it has been the most fun for me, particularly working with John Boyega because we have just had so much more to do together and we just really connected in a great way. It was really a wonderful way to finish it for me because John was the first person I met right when I screen-tested. It was just with me and him. So it just felt like a real full-circle thing.”

In terms of other tidbits of information about the Star Wars Episode 9 plot, John Boyega hasn't been shy about speaking out. At one point he hinted that The Rise of Skywalker will be "all-out war" and that he was getting ready to start training again, and then back in April (before shooting began), he revealed that Finn and Rey won't be separated for the final film, saying: “I haven’t read the script for Episode 9, but Daisy did shoot me a text saying, 'Oh my gosh, I just heard from J.J. [Abrams], and we’re back together'. That’s what I’m really excited about, is Finn and Rey back together again.” This makes a great deal of narrative sense, given that the pair started this trilogy together. Where The Last Jedi gave them time apart to grow in their own directions, the Star Wars: Episode 9 plot will bring them back together stronger, more learned, and capable of much more as a unit.”

That seems to have been confirmed by J.J. Abrams at Star Wars Celebration where he admitted: “This is an adventure that the group goes on together.” That'll be a first for the new trilogy, that has so far conspired to keep Rey, Finn and Poe – its answer to the classic Luke, Han, Leia axis – apart...

We may also find out more about Rey's parentage in Star Wars: Episode 9, despite them being (controversially for many fans) dismissed as "nobody“ by Kylo Ren in Rian Johnson’s The Last Jedi. I will say that we knew, going into this, that this movie, it had to be a satisfying conclusion,” J. J. Abrams told ABC News. “And we were well aware that that’s one of the things that’s been out there. I don’t want to say that what happens in Episode 8 [didn’t happen]. We have honored that. But I will say that there’s more to the story than you’ve seen.”

Daisy Ridley has also confirmed that “the question [over the identity of Rey’s parents] will be answered,” while The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson – the man who wrote that controversial revelation – is cool with all that, as he told MTV.

The Millennium Falcon goes to hyperspace for Star Wars Episode 9

The Millennium Falcon goes to hyperspace for Star Wars Episode 9

(Image credit: Disney/Lucasfilm)

Meanwhile, Vanity Fair has confirmed that Kylo Ren sidekicks the Knights of Ren (briefly referenced in The Force Awakens but totally absent from The Last Jedi) are making a return. 

And John Boyega’s been chatty about his new look for the movie as the “first step [for Star Wars Episode 9] is growing out my hair, so you can wait for the trailer to see why”. Simply a fresh trim for Finn or something more time jump-y? After the events of The Last Jedi, a time jump isn’t exactly a silly idea. It puts enough distance between Luke’s death and the (probable) rebuilding of the Resistance (let’s not forget the whole outfit currently fits comfortably on board the Millennium Falcon) to make things truly matter. 

So perhaps the biggest question right now is, how far is the Star Wars: Episode 9 plot jumping into the future? Will it be a matter of weeks, three years (the gap between A New Hope and Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back), or even a whole decade that separates the events as in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace and Star Wars: Attack of the Clones

J.J. Abrams wouldn't commit to anything beyond “some time” at Star Wars Celebration, but it has been reported that Boyega said the Star Wars: Episode 9 plot gets underway roughly a year after The Last Jedi ends. While this is totally unconfirmed – and Boyega himself has tweeted (below) to say that he doesn't even remember the interview in question! – Vanity Fair's article does report that the movie kicks off “about a year after the end of The Last Jedi”.

One thing’s for certain, however: it’s going to be rather more than the mere hours that elapsed between The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi...

Read more: What order should you watch the Star Wars movies in? It isn't actually that obvious...

Star Wars Episode 9 director

The Star Wars: Episode 9 director wasn’t always J.J. Abrams. Colin Trevorrow, who can count Safety Not Guaranteed, Jurassic World, and the Book of Henry among his most recent titles (and is now working on the follow-up to Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom), was originally picked to end the trilogy behind the camera. That all changed in September 2017, though. Citing different visions for the project, the statement released relating to Trevorrow stepping down on StarWars.com was short and sweet, as he became the latest in a line of Star Wars directorial hires that have gone south.

So, who could be the Star Wars: Episode 9 savior? Step forward Abrams. Having already directed The Force Awakens, he’s surely the safest pair of hands you could possibly find to take over as Star Wars Episode 9 director. It even sounds like he has unfinished business.

Speaking to Rolling Stone, Abrams said: “I learned so much in that movie and I saw that this was a chance to sort of realise something that we hadn’t quite achieved – and part of that was it was simply the beginning of these new characters and their story. The opportunity to sort of take what we had learned, to take the feeling of who these characters are and what they are and give them a final chapter that felt in the spirit of what we begun? It was too delicious of an opportunity to pass up.” 

He's also spoken with Fast Company about the “enormous challenge” of going back to a galaxy far, far away after Rian Johnson took the reins for The Last Jedi – and wrapping up the Skywalker saga with Star Wars: Episode 9.  

“It was a completely unknown scenario," Abrams admitted. “I had some gut instincts about where the story would have gone. Episode 8 was a story that Rian wrote and was telling based on [Episode 7] before we met. So he was taking the thing in another direction. So our movie was not just following what we had started, it was following what we had started and then had been advanced by someone else. And finally, it was resolving nine movies.” 

Sith Troopers

(Image credit: Hasbro/Lucasfilm/Disney)

Thanks to San Diego Comic-Con, we have our first look at some very cool (and very red) new Stormtroopers. Named Sith Troopers, these new-look cannon fodder are apparently the “next evolution of the Imperial First Order soldiers.” It’s not yet known if they have any additional abilities – which could be the case as they’re explicitly described as ‘Sith’ – but you can bet they’re a lot more fearsome (and better shots) than your average, vanilla Stormtroopers.

Want more Star Wars? Well, we have just the thing, as you could read about everything we know so far about the new Star Wars TV show, titled The Mandalorian.