So far, 2015 has been one long Star Wars celebration for the fans. It's been reveal after reveal, leading up to the release of Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens this December.
The party will continue to roll on when the action figures officially hit stores next week. But now, you can get an early peek at some of the promotional artwork that will be included on store displays and some merchandise.The artwork, which popped up online recently, features character shots of Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), new heroes like Rey (Daisy Ridley), old favorites like Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew), adorable little astromech droid BB-8, and the Stormtroopers of The First Order.
There has been a great deal made of original trilogy cast members Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher) being a part of the film, but so far, aside from Solo popping up on the Drew Struzan poster, there has been a distinct lack of these characters on any of the promotional art.
So far, what has been presented is a lot of Kylo Ren, who is the latest in a long line of Star Wars villains. Kylo belongs to The First Order (which we'll get into below). Rey, meanwhile, is a mysterious new character that has only described as a young female scavenger. She has been shown in the film's previews, driving her speeder across the deserts of the planet Jakku, dressed in rags with a scarf around her face.
BB-8 is the newest in a line of adorable droids that has already managed to capture the hearts of the fans. BB-8 is an Astromech droid that belongs to Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac), and whose ball-like body fits nicely in a T-70 X-wing fighter's droid socket.
The First Order is one of the most interesting groups to be prominantly displayed on the posters. The faction is said to consist of a military extremist group that is still trying to carry on the mission of the fallen Galactic Empire.
You can expect to see this artwork on in-store display signs in various shops, along with an array of posters and other select merchandise. Don't look for any of this on the Hasbro figures, though. Those have been leaked online and we know that they each feature character-specific paintings. The full line of Star Wars: The Force Awakens merchandise will officially hit stores on Friday, September 4, 2015 - otherwise known as "Force Friday." The event will begin at 12:01 a.m. on Friday and it's sure to bring new and old fans alike out in droves.
Star Wars: 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.