Speed across the Jakku desert from Star Wars: The Force Awakens with this immersive 360 experience created exclusively for Facebook.
Posted by Star Wars on Wednesday, September 23, 2015
In today's day and age, social media has become a valuable tool in promoting an upcoming feature film. Moviegoers are by now familiar with directors like Bryan Singer posting teases on various platforms to give fans a taste of what to expect while his movies are in principal photography. J.J. Abrams' Star Wars: The Force Awakens is no different, as it too has embraced the medium for marketing purposes.
While the ultra-secretive Abrams hasn't shared anything too revealing, viewers have still been treated to a brief teaser on Instagram that featured some new footage. Now, thanks to a video from the ILM X Lab, fans can go speeding through the desert landscape of Jakku in a 360 experience created exclusively for the official Star Wars Facebook page (watch it above).
For those not in the know, Jakku is a new planet in Star Wars lore that has been heavily featured in Force Awakens promotional materials, showcasing sequences such as the Millennium Falcon's aerial chase with the First Order TIE fighters. From what we can garner based on the trailers and the slew of rumors, it would appear that a majority of the film's first act takes place on this location, with events leading up to Rey (Daisy Ridley) and Finn (John Boyega) crossing paths with Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew) before heading off on their adventure.
Jakku has become one of Lucasfilm's bigger pushes in the newly established Star Wars canon, as a Battle of Jakku (the aftermath of which can be seen in the Force Awakens trailers) downloadable add-on is being made available for the new edition of the Star Wars Battlefront video game this December. As fans await that to become truly immersed in the world, they can take this 360 experience video for a spin to get a better idea about the scope and feel of Jakku.
For those interested, here's a Youtube version of the Star Wars 360 experience video:
Placing the viewer on Rey's speeder, the video offers a quick and fun tour of the Star Destroyer graveyard that we've seen in the previews. Those hoping for some new story clues will be out of luck, but the clip does illustrate that Jakku is not necessarily a desolate place. Along the way, fans will bump into another speeder driver with some road rage and a little scavenger pulling a wagon of scrap. There's also a cameo from new fan-favorite droid BB-8, as evidenced by his now-familiar sounds. Trying to locate him should be a fun game for fans to play as they run through the video multiple times.
If there is a downside, it's that the video is just under a minute, leaving fans with a limited amount of time to explore Jakku and all it has to offer. At the same time, it is a harmless time killer and should satisfy your daily Star Wars craving. The first person viewpoint is an effective way of conveying the magnitude of the area, and since the detailed map can be seen in a full 360 degrees, there's always something new to find in another ride through.
Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens hits theaters on December 18th, 2015, followed by Rogue One: A Star Wars Story on December 16th, 2016, Star Wars: Episode VIII on May 26th, 2017, and the Han Solo Star Wars Anthology film on May 25th, 2018. Star Wars: Episode IX is expected to reach theaters in 2019, followed by the third Star Wars Anthology film in 2020.
Source: Star Wars Facebook