Mark Hamill dropped a Star Wars bombshell recently by admitting that, after 40 years, was eager to leave Luke Skywalker behind. He thought he had done that back when Return of the Jedi set the box office alight back in 1983 but agreed to reprise his role one final time when Disney released The Force Awakens in December 2015.
After Hamill expressed his wish to pursue new challenges away from Star Wars, we take a look at 10 characters who should bow out after the Rise of Skywalker hits screens in December. And, no, they're not all members of the original trilogy...
10 Luke Skywalker
Hamill should get his wish for two reasons. One, he’s eager to leave the franchise and continue his acting career elsewhere - meaning the Disney bigwigs should grant him his wish in good faith. But, secondly, it appears Luke now has only one final outing in him from a narrative perspective.
Sure, the likes of Obi-Wan Kenobi and Yoda appeared in more than one Star Wars film despite dying. But with Star Wars 9 aiming to end the Skywalker saga, then it makes sense that Luke doesn’t feature in any more blockbusters going forward. He’s dead - yet can still assist protagonist Rey as she aims to complete her Jedi training - and he’s likely to leave the Jakku scavenger well alone once (if and most likely when) she manages to topple the First Order and bring balance to the force.
Fans are really hoping that Yoda makes another Star Wars cameo. The little green Jedi, voiced by Frank Oz, made a fleeting appearance in Rian Johnson’s divisive the Last Jedi. But while some people had issues with everything about that movie, from Johnson’s decision to make Luke Skywalker a grumpy old hermit to his editing oversights in THAT throne room scene, most agreed that Yoda’s return was a shining light.
The former Jedi council member returned to give Luke some advice and, with Skywalker now joining him in force ghost form, it would be great to see him helping Rey with her training. But again, once the First Order is defeated, that should be it. There isn’t even much scope in a spin-off movie with Yoda spending the years in between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope lying low.
8 Sheev Palpatine
What a card to play. Just when it looked as if Star Wars was suffering from fatigue, what with the Last Jedi and Solo failing to be the box office hits they were expected to be, Disney spring a major surprise by announcing the return of Sheev Palpatine, former master to Darth Vader, ruler of the Galactic Empire and big villain to the entire series so far.
Palpatine will be involved in some capacity - some believe it may be essence transfer while others have suggested he somehow managed to survive his fall at the end of Return of the Jedi. But let’s face it, he’s probably coming back to die all over again. And, when he’s inevitably defeated for a second time, that should be the end of the character.
7 Leia Organa
With Carrie Fisher tragically passing away back in December 2016, it means there should be no more Leia Organa going forward. Fisher will posthumously be reprising her role in The Rise of Skywalker via previously unseen footage from The Force Awakens but, regardless of what ending her character is given, that should be the end.
Fisher’s family have already ruled out use of CGI on her and, just like Luke, it’s the end of the Skywalker saga. While not one by name, she’s certainly got the blood and it makes sense for there to be no more Leia after the final movie of the saga releases at the end of the year.
6 Rose Tico
Poor Kellie Marie Tran. It’s a sad state of affairs when an actress of her ability and charm is chased off social media platforms just because a few Star Wars fans didn’t like her character, Rose Tico, in Rian Johnson’s controversial The Last Jedi. Some have gone as far to label her worse than Jar Jar Binks, while others have targeted her with personal comments.
That’s wrong, but the backlash surrounding her character means we can expect Rose to no longer feature after the Rise of Skywalker. Tran can be forgiven for walking away from the role herself - why bother when you get the grief? Even if she were to settle down romantically with Finn, there would be no appetite to see how the duo’s life together plays out.
Why why, what have we here. While the majority of Star Wars fans knew Billy Dee Williams would be reprising his role as Lando Calrissian for the final chapter of the saga, the clip of him having a blast in the Millenium Falcon with Chewbacca by his side prompted one of the biggest reasons for cheer when the Rise of Skywalker trailer released in April.
With Lando having failed to appear in either The Force Awakens or The Last Jedi, many did not expect to ever see the charming, charismatic Williams back on screen again. However, we think we know where this is going. The Old Guard have been killed off ever since Disney took the reins - it was Han Solo in 2015 and Luke Skywalker two years later - and we have a hunch that Lando might bite the dust too. Given how the series has survived in his absence, it would make sense for William’s role to be his Star Wars last.
Anthony Daniels’ C3PO may be one of the most annoying individuals to ACTUAL Star Wars characters such as Han Solo, Luke Skywalker and Leia Organa but he’s loved among the fans. After all - Solo aside - he an R2D2 are the only two people to appear in every single movie of the series, from the originals to the prequels to the sequels.
His role has diminished, though, and there is a sense that he’s no longer as indispensable as he once was. Star Wars has other droids in it now and C3PO has spent much of the sequel movies just standing around, doing very little of note. Could he possibly meet a sticky end in the Rise of Skywalker? Perhaps. If this is the end, killing off the Galaxy’s most-loveably irritating droid may be a path Disney choose to take. Because, once peace is inevitably restored to the galaxy, he’ll probably just spend his time standing around some more...
When there’s C3PO, there’s R2D2. The ying to the protocol droid’s yang, the chalk to his cheese, the red lightsaber to his blue. Everybody’s favorite little droid is, though, no longer key to the Star Wars saga. And it makes little sense for him continuing to make appearances in the new planned trilogies further down the line.
R2D2 spent the majority of the Force Awakens silent and unmoving having chosen to give up following Kylo Ren’s attack on Luke Skywalker’s Jedi academy. In the sequel, he interacts with his old friends for just a few brief moments but, once again, is criminally underused. With previous masters Luke and Anakin Skywalker now dead, R2D2 may as well call it a day and chill out with a cocktail on a sunny planet somewhere.
Daisy Ridley has one-upped Mark Hamill by revealing she DEFINITELY won’t be in the new Star Wars trilogy. She told Buzzfeed: “I mean I can say I’m not in the next trilogy. No. I think, cause Rian always said...if it’s the Rian [Johnson} one or it’s the guys that did Game of Thrones, I’m not sure. Whichever one it was, they always said it was going to be a separate story. So I’m not. No.”
That’s probably for the best. If Rey survives the Rise of Skywalker - and given how insanely powerful she is, that’s a genuine possibility - then it’s best Disney leave her well alone. Fans have responded negatively to the newer versions of original protagonists Luke, Han and Leia and, some point down the line, Ridley should think about those respective backlashes before possibly making a return.
Oh Disney, what have you done to poor Chewbacca? Gone are the days where he was a key clog of the Star Wars machine, a vital character on the screen and a key merchandise pull off of it. We were grateful to see him involved in several high-profile action scenes with Han Solo in The Force Awakens but, ever since being snubbed by Leia after his old friend’s death, we’ve barely seen him.
Chewbacca had just one single chat with Luke in The Last Jedi. The only other thing he did of note was spend his time battling to keep Porgs under control and in his stomach. Chewie without Han is like a world where C3PO and R2D2 aren’t together. Rey wouldn’t want him around forever, Luke is gone and Leia may very well be gone by the series’ end too. It’s time for the dawn of the Wookie to end.