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A Rundown of the New Footage From the D23 Trailer for ‘The Rise of Skywalker’

This is not a drill: Rey is holding a red, double-edged lightsaber

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures/Ringer illustration

On Monday, Disney released a special look at the final chapter of a 42-year saga, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. The clip, which was originally shown to limited audiences at Disney’s D23 expo over the weekend, spends much of its runtime doing what Star Wars does best: making us think of the past.

We see Luke staring out at a double sun on Tatooine—a callback to the last sight he sees at the end of The Last Jedi—and are shown snippets from each of the preceding films in the saga’s canon. Han and Leia, Luke and Vader, Yoda and Chewie, and, for the first significant time since 1999 (miss me with your Solo love, sycophants), Darth Maul (more on that later).

The trailer comes just a few days after the release of the movie’s poster, which shows Rey and Kylo Ren battling below what appears to be an enormous floating Darth Sidious.


Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Catch Oscar Isaac lookin’ like a snack in what I can only assume is a look from the new Hermès Hyperspace collection. Also Rey and Chewie and Finn, if you’re into the whole “the gang is back together” thing.

Plainly, I feel about space the way my colleague Chris Ryan feels about the sea: Everything is better when it’s involved. Battles on Earth are fine. Battles in space? Unbelievably dope. So this shot of resistance fighters leaving hyperspace superimposed with the largest fleet of star destroyers ever shown has me ready for war.

Later, we see C-3PO, looking like he needs a healthy dose of Visine before his parents come back from dinner, as well as a shot of Princess Leia. But both seem less important than this giant red laser that appears to be cratering a planet. The ruined Death Star from the end of Return of the Jedi made an appearance in Rise’s first trailer from April. Its planet-killing cannon (if we’re assuming it had the same specs as the original from A New Hope) was green, but the Starkiller base from Force Awakens had a red laser. This is all to say, it seems like we’re getting DEATH STAR IV.

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

But the biggest reveal (or misdirection) in the trailer has to do with Rey. She who awoke the Force in the reboot, the titular last Jedi from the second installment. After fighting the Praetorian guards in the throne room with Kylo, her lightsaber—formerly Luke’s—is split in half, leaving her without a weapon. So it’s curious that some shots from Monday’s teaser show her with not one saber …

But two.

We see Rey fighting against Kylo with a blue lightsaber on the structure featured in the poster. Maybe Rey wielding some version of Maul’s double saber is the product of some dark vision like the ones she witnessed in the cave below Luke’s island in The Last Jedi. Or maybe she’s just finally had enough of the seemingly never-ending struggle between dark and light, and decided to end things once and for all. Either way, December 20 can’t come soon enough.