As Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker finally hits theaters worldwide, keen eyed audiences have discovered that the Fortnite Star Wars event that took place in-game last weekend contained a major plot point that precipitated the movie's story and opening crawl this entire time...
***Warning: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker spoilers are discussed beyond this point. You have been warned.***
Seen Episode 9? Good. Here's how one of the biggest movies of the year and one of the biggest game of all time are connected by more than just a few cosmetic crossovers.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker ending explained: your biggest questions answered
Rise of Skywalker's opening crawl begins with the surprise that "The dead speak! The galaxy has heard a mysterious broadcast, a threat of revenge in the sinister voice of the late Emperor Palpatine."
What were the words contained within this "mysterious broadcast", you might ask? Episode 9 itself never reveals the transmission itself, which seems like an odd omission, but it turns out that Palpatine's message was already revealed in Fortnite just days ago.
"At last the work of generations is complete", states Ian McDiarmid's dastardly Sith Lord in the broadcast. "The great error is corrected. The day of victory is at hand. The day of revenge. The day of the Sith!" This, it turns out, is the transmission that sends Kylo Ren on the hunt for a Sith Wayfinder at the beginning of Rise of Skywalker, kicking off the chain of events of the entire movie itself.
While it seems like an odd decision for Disney to relegate a key plot point to a free-to-play battle royale game that not everyone has access to, this isn't the first time its integrated one of its key properties into Fortnite, with Avengers: Endgame landing onto the island in the form of playable superheroes earlier this year.
Regardless, the canonical significance of this Fortnite event reveals just how much Hollywood is starting to value the marketing power of the video game format, especially as a marketing tool for its biggest and most beloved franchises. Just you wait; this time next year, Terrence Malick will be hosting virtual lectures at Dusty Depot on the Kierkegaardian undertones of his latest arthouse flick.
Check out the biggest new games of 2019 and beyond still on the way, or watch the video below for a guide to the year ahead.