Star Wars fans are licking their lips in anticipation for The Rise of Skywalker. All they have to feast themselves on until December are some trailers and tidbits of information from conventions. While many are excited, plenty still have pause regarding the closing chapter of this saga more than forty years in the making. The following list will present five reasons we're excited for Episode IX, and five things we're still losing sleep over. This new trilogy has so far polarized audiences, so one has to wonder if the last film will try to win over fans who have turned their back, or focus on those who are still riding the Star Wars train. Whatever they do, it'll probably end up grossing boatloads of cash.
10 Excited: Director
For some, J.J. Abrams coming back to helm the conclusion is just as much a cause for concern as it is for joy. It is good because the filmmaker knows what people like about Star Wars and exploits it well. On the other hand, it is disappointing to see the series staying safe with someone who has already made a tried and true Star Wars film.
The Force Awakens was a return to form and a solid adventure, but didn't try new things. Still, it's good to know Abrams will deliver the goods fans have been waiting for.
9 Worried: It'll Ignore The Last Jedi
To say The Last Jedi shook up the fan community would be an understatement. Some greeted it with an ire and disdain one would usually reserve for someone who made them a cuckold. However, just as many fans enjoyed the new direction it took with the franchise and the portrayal of its classic characters.
Regardless of one's feelings, the movie is a part of the canon and should not be ignored or retconned. Franchises always need to push forward. Given the feedback from the eighth numbered film, however, one has to worry that the new chapter will treat it as nonexistent.
8 Excited: Ian McDiarmid
Ian McDiarmid is one magnificently talented thespian. Just hearing his raspy, pronounced voice when playing Emperor Palpatine sends chills down spines. Even in the often maligned prequels, he gives a stunning performance as the chancellor pulling the strings behind the scenes until his evil is revealed before all.
The trademark laugh and announcement of his inclusion in The Rise of Skywalker was a delight for everyone. The exact details of his inclusion are unknown, but it is enough to know he is in it.
7 Worried: Living Up To The Entire Saga
Few things have ever had to live up to such a monumental legacy. How the film will please every fan is a complete mystery. Star Wars is sacred to many, and anything less perfection amounts to heresy. People already know how certain fans react when a movie doesn't live up to their expectations. With The Rise of Skywalker billed as the closing to nine films, a lackluster reception is liable to start an armed conflict on par with the franchise's biggest battles.
6 Excited: Ending Of The Saga
While this may be stressful for the filmmakers and cast, it is a truly monumental occasion for fans. Some middle aged and elderly people who saw A New Hope back in 1977 are finally seeing it all come to a close. Granted, it came to a close twice before with Return of the Jedi and Revenge of the Sith, but this one is set to tie the three trilogies together and put a bow on top of it. It certainly won't be the end of Star Wars as a whole, but things will change drastically afterwards.
5 Worried: Wrapping Up Leia's Story
Carrie Fisher tragically passed away in December, 2016. She completed her role for The Last Jedi, and The Rise of Skywalker is using unused footage from The Force Awakens to wrap up her story. When including actors who have already passed, one always runs the risk of being insensitive or making the sendoff lackluster.
Furious 7 is probably the best example of a movie doing it right. The producers wouldn't have included her if it didn't feel appropriate, but audiences won't know for sure until December.
4 Excited: Lando
Of all the returning faces in the first two movies of the new trilogy, Lando Calrissian was mysteriously absent. Despite his universal appreciation, the series didn't want to shoehorn him in without a real purpose. With the Rise of Skywalker, they apparently found a reason to get him back in the fray, because Billie Dee Williams is returning in all his Lando glory.
Billy Dee is over eighty years old, but still looks dashing as ever in costume. It'll be great to see him on screen, but a few marriages might end in the process.
3 It'll Try To Set Up Future Films And Shows
While the movie promises a satisfying conclusion, everyone knows this has never been J.J. Abrams' strong suit. On top of that, modern movie franchises in general always keep a door open for continuation. With all the Disney Plus shows on the horizon, we're sincerely hoping Rise of Skywalker doesn't try to set one up or tie into them. The movie should be a tight conclusion with which the entire franchise could end. No one is blaming Disney for wanting more money out of a good thing with spinoffs, but don't let it effect the film.
2 Excited: Whatever Rey Is Doing At The End Of The Second Trailer
The D23 Special Look ended with an ominous image of Rey in a robe and hood wielding a curiously designed red lightsaber. The image indicates a transition to the dark side of the Force, but the true story is probably more complicated. Whatever makes her don this apparel will surely be intriguing and deepen the lore.
Does she sacrifice herself to the dark side to win, or does she discover that true balance within the force means embracing some of the dark side, and did this sentence just describe a Rise of Skywalker theory or the plot of Kingdom Hearts?
1 Worried: Snoke Will Be Ignored
Snoke's demise at the end of The Last Jedi was a shocking twist and great character development for Kylo Ren. However, if Snoke is never mentioned again, it'll leave a gaping hole within the trilogy's plot. Audiences still don't know how exactly the first order came to power or where the supreme leader came from. If these questions are still unanswered by the time the credits roll, it will forever remain a stain on the new films. It doesn't have to take up a huge hunk of the movie, but closure is necessary.