Star Wars Celebration Europe gave us a lot of great information regarding Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, but Lucasfilm didn’t forget about its other big film coming at the end of 2017. During a panel at the celebration, director Rian Johnson revealed a few new details about the movie, which, as we’ve heard previously, will start immediately where The Force Awakens left off.
As I just mentioned, Episode VIII will pick up right as Rey confronts Luke on Ach-to, and will presumably provide actor Mark Hamill with the opportunity to actually say a few words. Now, we don’t know how Luke will respond to Rey (and his father’s lightsaber), but it’s an intriguing way to start the story off; there will be immediate conflict, and we should hopefully find out more about why Luke went into hiding.
We’ll also dive much deeper into the characters, according to director Rian Johnson. Although we know Rey is Force sensitive, we still know virtually nothing about her. She was left behind on Jakku, but by whom? And why? Episode VIII will seemingly provide answers, and also tell us more about Finn, who was forced to fight for the First Order from a young age.
Finally, Johnson revealed plenty of practical effects are being used for the film, which seems to be a continuing theme in the Star Wars universe.
“The amount of sets we’ve built for this movie has been outrageous,” Johnson revealed. Apparently, a lot of exterior sets of ships were built to get “dynamic, more controlled, spaceship photography,” io9, who was at the celebration, said. You can actually see some of these sets via Johnson’s Tumblr, where he’s posted a few behind-the-scenes photos from the movie.
You can learn much more about Episode VIII from io9. Sadly, we still don’t know the episode’s actual name.