Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker trailer: The Force will always be with you

It's been a hard long wait for Star Wars fans just to find out the title of the next film, let alone see some footage. When filming wrapped back in mid-February, there were rumours an announcement was imminent - and bar the cast saying their goodbyes to each other on social media, Lucasfilm and Disney were giving nothing away. But finally, after months of waiting, both the name and the first trailer were revealed at the Star Wars Celebration Episode IX panel at the annual Star Wars Celebration event in Chicago only a few moments ago.

As expected, not too much was given away at the event, which featured nearly all of the main cast (minus Adam Driver and Domhnall Gleeson). What we did learn was that the crew will all go on one final, epic adventure together, that Luke's lightsaber - previously destroyed - still exists, and we were also introduced to BB8's new friend, D-O. J.J. Abrams revealed that the story does not pick up immediately after the end of the last film. Naomi Ackie has also joined the cast as Jannah (who may or may not be Lando’s daughter). After the cast left the stage and the teaser played to the crowd, Ian McDiarmid - who played Emporer Palpatine - appeared on-stage to say "Roll it again!" and when you reach the end of the trailer, you'll see why.

Back in July of last year we heard that Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker was set to be the last instalment of the Skywalker saga. J.J. Abrams has been given back the reigns after Rian Johnson’s superb effort broke the mould in 2017. We can only hope this instalment doesn't fall victim to fan pressure to conform to expectations and is prepared to take just as many risks.

After Carrie Fisher's sudden passing, the other big question on fan's minds is how they will handle her appearance in the film. Oscar Isaac has said it's been filmed in a 'beautiful way' and J.J. Abrams confirmed they'll be using a combination of existing unused footage from the previous two films. FIsher's brother Todd has also said, "It’s going to look like it was meant to be. Like it was shot yesterday". The story was originally intended to revolve heavily around Leia, so how prominently she will appear now remains to be seen. Watch the first teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker above to see what's in store later this year - although remember, it's highly likely most of the footage shown in the trailers will not even be in the finished film.

The cast stars Oscar Isaac, Richard E. Grant, Daisy Ridley, Domhnall Gleeson, Adam Driver, Keri Russell, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Lupita Nyong'o, Billie Lourd, Matt Smith, Kelly Marie Tran, John Boyega and Billy Dee Williams.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker will open in UK cinemas on December 19th.

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