The Rise of Skywalker will bring over 40 years of storytelling to an emotional close - and fans are fearing the worst for everybody’s favourite, albeit most irritating droid C3PO. The latest trailer appeared to show him about to die, or something along those lines, with Luke Skywalker and Anakin Skywalker’s old friend ‘taking one last look’ at his friends.
C3PO has been in every single Star Wars movie so far, 2018’s Solo: A Star Wars Story aside. He even made a small cameo in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story! And we now take a look at his top 10 moments ahead of what could be his final appearance ever on the big screen. So before that may or may not happen, here are C3PO's 10 best moments (so far).
10 Dodging Gunfire
C3PO is one of the first Star Wars characters we meet, popping up at the very beginning of 1977’s A New Hope and proving to be a vital character within that blockbuster. The movie starts with an invasion from Darth Vader and the villainous Empire, who are keen to leave nobody alive as they hunt for the Death Star plans.
A fight ensues with the Rebel Alliance determined to go down with a bang. And C3PO and his friend, R2D2, both do their best to avoid being struck. This sees them potter to an escape pod and it’s hilarious to watch them go at such a slow pace - but still avoid coming to any harm.
9 Hating On R2D2
Though C3PO and R2D2 are old friends, they’re not exactly on the best of terms. The protocol droid hates on his little companion near the start of A New Hope with the duo’s bickering akin to that of an old married couple. This sets the tone for the rest of the saga with the two droids often exchanging barbs - even if audiences don’t know exactly what R2 is saying.
They go their separate ways on Tatooine but end up reuniting and both being sold to Luke Skywalker. Little did they know how vital they’d become not just in the fight against the Empire, but for Luke going forward.
8 Interrupting Han And Leia
Han Solo and Leia Organa like each other - but that doesn’t stop them from often arguing in a rather flirtatious way. In The Empire Strikes Back, it’s clear that Leia is frustrated at the former smuggler for wanting to get away from the Rebel Alliance in order to pay his debt to Jabba the Hutt. However, before he intends to go, Han kisses the Princess in a nice, romantic scene.
And then C3PO interrupts it. It’s clear that Han’s annoyed and the moment passes. We’d have to wait the bulk of two movies to see the two people exchange such a tender moment again.
7 Getting Destroyed On Cloud City
Fans feared the worst for C3PO when he wonders off on the planet of Cloud City after Han Solo, Leia Organa and Chewbacca turn to lovable rogue Lando Calrissian for help. The protocol droid ends up walking into a room he shouldn’t and pays the price by being smashed into pieces and rendered as spare parts.
What makes the moment extra special is that it’s Chewbacca who manages to find the parts of C3PO. He’s unable to rebuild him, however, and merely settles to tying him onto his back. That doesn’t stop the droid from bickering, though, and it’s hilarious to see him dishing out pointless words of advice as he’s strapped to the Wookie.
6 Confronting Jabba
It would be no understatement to say that C3PO isn’t exactly the bravest of droids. You’d run out of fingers if you tried to count quite how many times he’s expressed feelings of fear in troublesome situations. However, that doesn’t stop Luke Skywalker from sending the droid, as well as R2D2, to haggle with Jabba the Hutt for the release of Han Solo.
Things don’t go too well on that front and Luke ends up traveling to the planet himself to save his friends, including Leia. The highlight of that specific adventure is when C3PO has to jump, but is instead pushed by R2D2 and rescued with his legs in the air and head in the sand.
5 Gaining Royalty Among Ewoks
Star Wars has many potential royal figures. Leia Organa is already a Princess, so she doesn’t count, but both Luke Skywalker and Han Solo would be admired by the population if they were to ever become leaders. However, rather than the aforementioned trio, the Ewoks of Endor instead believe that C3PO should be their ruler.
The droid has to try and prevent the Ewoks from eating the Rebel Alliance heroes but he struggles to do this. Ultimately Leia saves the day but C3PO remains popular and treats Endor’s inhabitants to story time, where they all gather round and hear tales of their ongoing fight to bring peace to the galaxy. Cute.
4 Meeting R2D2 For The First Time
Everybody thought that George Lucas was done with Star Wars after the original trilogy but, 16 years on from the release of Return Of The Jedi, The Phantom Menace came out in theaters. And while it was a movie that didn’t get the same acclaim as the three Star Wars movies that had released before it, it still had some rather brilliant moments.
And the most spine-tingling is when R2D2 and C3PO meet for the first time. The protocol droid, ‘naked’ due to the fact his parts are showing, is charmed by his little counterpart and introduces himself after being showed off by Anakin Skywalker. The moment is particularly amazing because it’s revealed that Anakin, who would go on to become Darth Vader, was his creator.
3 Die Jedi, Die!
George Lucas has always insisted that Star Wars is like poetry, it rhymes. In the second movie of the original trilogy C3PO finds himself destroyed when he gets into trouble. And it’s the same for the second installment of the prequels, Attack Of The Clones, where he’s turned into a battle droid amid a big battle on Geonosis.
This means C3PO is deployed on the frontlines with his head on the body of Battle Droid. It’s funny to watch as he shouts things like ‘Die Jedi, die!’ while apologizing for his newfound violent nature. Inevitably, R2D2 comes to his rescue by de attaching his head and reattaching it to his true body. What would he do without him?
2 Having His Mind Wiped
One of the biggest complaints and nagging questions fans had with C3PO in the prequels was that how was he unable to mention any of his adventures during the original trilogy? You’d think when going up against Darth Vader, having witnessed the fall of Anakin Skywalker and Republic as well as the death of Padme Amidala on Polis Massa, he’d have said something about once being owned by the villain, right?
Well Revenge of the Sith solves that mystery by having Bail Organa order a memory wipe for C3PO. It’s sad but he’s forced to forget everything he’s seen - which prevents him from being a key player in the fight against the Empire many years in the future.
1 Having One Last Look
Unfortunately, C3PO’s role in Star Wars has changed since Disney acquired the rights to the saga. They’ve preferred to have BB8 at the front and center of things, even limiting the contribution of R2D2 as well. And that means that, in both The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, everybody’s favorite golden droid has been significantly marginalized.
But his line in The Rise of Skywalker trailer, which we mentioned at the very start of this article, already looks to be significant. It looks as if we’ll have to say goodbye to the character we’ve loved for the past 40 years and that should be enough to get people weeping into their tissues when the movie releases later this year.