D23 2019: Lucasfilm Unveils More The Rise Of Skywalker

The Force was with D23 Expo.

Walt Disney Studios kicked off its panel this morning with J.J. Abrams and Kathleen Kennedy coming out for Lucasfilm and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – AUGUST 24: (L-R) Producer Kathleen Kennedy and Director/producer/writer J.J. Abrams of ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ took part today in the Walt Disney Studios presentation at Disney’s D23 EXPO 2019 in Anaheim, Calif. ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ will be released in U.S. theaters on December 20, 2019. (Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Disney)

Much of the cast appeared, minus Ian McDiarmid and Mark Hamill,  with them to discuss the upcoming sci-fi epic which wraps up both the new trilogy and the nine-film Skywalker saga. A new poster and sizzle reel premiered during the panel, with everyone in the audience receiving the poster. (Chairman Alan Horn again made the connection between 20th Century Fox and Disney holding all of the rights to all of the films which will be available on Disney+).

ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – AUGUST 24: (L-R) John Boyega and Daisy Ridley of ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ took part today in the Walt Disney Studios presentation at Disney’s D23 EXPO 2019 in Anaheim, Calif. ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ will be released in U.S. theaters on December 20, 2019. (Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Disney)

The breathtaking footage ends with Rey in a dark cloak holding a red Sith lightsaber that then flips into a Maul-like two-bladed one as she and Kylo battle amongst crashing waves.

Abrams says the late Carrie Fisher’s Leia is “really the heart of this story…. we could not be more excited for you to see her in her final performance” which comes from unused Force Awakens footage that was able to make this all possible.

Keri Russell revealed she plays Zorri Bliss, a shady criminal who is an old friend of Poe’s and gets to wear a gun-wielding red and gold costume.

Kennedy did not reveal any other plans for Lucasfilm theatrically, as it appears their immediate focus will be on their slew of Disney+ shows, with no mention of new trilogies from David Benioff/D.B. Weiss or Rian Johnson. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker will arrive in theaters this Christmas.

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About Mac Williams
Mac is freelance writer/dramaturg. In addition to fanboy planet, he also covers high school sports for Prep2Prep. As a dramaturg he has worked with such theatre companies as City Lights Theatre Company, San Jose Stage, San Jose Repertory Theatre & Berkeley Repertory Theatre. He also coaches Boy's Varsity Soccer and helps out in the Performing Arts Department of Archbishop Mitty High School. Proud Disneyland Pass Holder & D23 Member.