Star Wars Rebels debuts on Disney Channel this weekend, or possibly you’ve already seen it via other avenues (we saw it and it is totally fun and feels very much like actual Star Wars), and as such, that’s where the bulk of the Star Wars news has been coming lately. But don’t, for one second, think that we’ve forgotten about Star Wars: Episode VII, because we know that you haven’t. And to be honest, as much as we enjoyed Rebels, it’s the movies that we’re really excited for, and there are some interesting tidbits floating around on that front.
As usual, the SPOILER rule is in effect. What waits beyond this point could ruin certain things from the film, or they could turn out to be complete and utter bullshit. So read on at your own risk, and take these reports with a grain of salt.
The fine folks over at Badass Digest have their ear to the ground as far as Star Wars news goes, and their sources have told them a couple of cool things that indicate the characters that franchise newcomers Max von Sydow and Daisy Ridley are playing. Or at least could play.
When we heard that von Sydow was in Episode VII, most of us assumed that he was going to be a villain of some sort. He’s terrifying, and really good at playing bad guys, so it’s easy to imagine him playing something like an elder Sith character, possibly as related to the Inquisitor(s)/Jedi Hunters that we’ve heard tell about, and that figure prominently in Rebels. As it turns out, these assumptions may be correct.
According to the BAD report, he’s the character who gets the ball rolling. You remember the part about a lightsaber turning up, and event that kicks off the story. What we heard is that Ridley’s character, along with John Boyega’s, go on a journey to find its owner, presumably Luke Skywalker, who is supposed to be missing at this point. They’re apparently not the ones who find it, however.
A big blue alien finds it and brings it to a scrap yard where Ridley’s character, who this says is named Kira, encounters the weapon. Von Sydow is apparently a senile old cyborg hanging out there. He’s all weird and demented and rambles, but when the lightsaber shows up, “he gets lucid. He recognizes it. He begins to talk about the old days, name drops a couple of Prequel Trilogy characters, even. And then, after Kira and the alien leave he makes a call to a mysterious figure. ‘It’s here,’ he says. But who is he calling?”
So it sounds like he may not be entirely a good guy, but that’s still an interesting development.
Kira, if that’s her real name, also sounds more and more badass as time goes on. For example, she has maybe the coolest dwelling in all of Star Wars lore. She lives in an old AT-AT that has been knocked over and is sitting on its side, which, though a definite tetanus hazard, sounds pretty awesome. This piece of news is also being corroborated by sources at other outlets.
Here’s how Making Star Wars describes the scene:
On a desert planet, there’s a canyon, sandy and brown. In front of the canyon is a downed AT-AT walker, laying on its side. A young girl sits atop of the mechanical beast’s head. She gazes outward towards the end of the canyon where her hopes and dreams may one day be realized, not unlike Luke Skywalker yearning for more from his mundane life. For now, this is her home, the wreckage of years of intergalactic warfare. The legs of the AT-AT are partially obscured by sand at the “ankles” but pop out at the feet. This walker has been there for some time and nature has began to take the machine into the earth. The AT-AT lays on its left side, its head leveled by the dirt from which its head smashed into during a battle some time ago. The right side of the body of the AT-AT faces upwards, battle scared, shot by many laser blasts which no doubt brought the machine down. Battle wreckage is littered all around the fallen beast. This is the dwelling of the new hero from Star Wars: Episode VII.
The underbelly has large pieces of cloth draped over it to protect the dwelling from the environment. A small ship is hidden inside the belly, like a garage. In the distance you can see TIE-Fighters, which have been downed into the sane. AT-ST head sits, its body below the dirt. You can see another AT-AT body in the distance, its coverings eroded away with time.
That sounds like a strange place to live, and makes you wonder about Kira as a character. I’m curious to see the ship in the “garage.”
Remember that week we saw all those aerial shots of the Greenham Common Air Base set, the place where we saw the half-Millennium Falcon and the black X-Wing Fighter? There’s also news on that front as well. It’s reportedly the Massassi Temple on Yavin IV, the one from the end of A New Hope. That was an important place to the Rebel Alliance, obviously, so perhaps it became a fixture of the Galactic Republic after Jedi? Then again, maybe not.
I have a theory, based on out of context set photos and unsubstantiated reports, so bear with me. We saw a photo that looks like Adam Driver (he’s a distinct looking dude) from the Greenham exterior. According to reports, he is an aristocrat with a penchant for collecting historical artifacts, so perhaps he’s visiting this temple looking for swag. His interest lies primarily with Sith memorabilia we’ve heard, but there’s nothing to stop him from poking his head into a temple and taking a looks. But, if this is still a seat of power, and he is a wealthy guy from an important family, it’s also entirely possible he could show up at some sort of important function.
And one last thing, Chewbacca may have a mechanical hand. My guess is that he lost it in battle somewhere post-Jedi, but the Falcon is old and rickety, so maybe a piece fell off and severed his hand. That seems anticlimactic though, doesn’t it?
As with all Star Wars: Episode VII news, we’ll have to wait until December 18, 2015 to find out if any of this is actually real, but it sure is fun to talk about.