The closer we get to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker‘s December 20 release date, the more we learn about the ninth and final entry in the so-called “Skywalker Saga.” Like the fact that director J.J. Abrams and Star Wars creator George Lucas had a nice long chat about midi-chlorians, or that The Last Jedi‘s Rian Johnson inspired the filmmaker to take a “freer” approach to The Rise of Skywalker. Actually, let’s return to that midi-chlorians thing because it dovetails nicely with Abrams’s latest comments about force ghosts and Star Wars lore.
Speaking with Entertainment Weekly, the subject of force ghosts and precisely what they are — and are not — capable of came up. Or, at least EW‘s reporter attempted to ask Abrams about the matter in the hopes of gleaning some new details from him. It’s an important matter, as Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker, who died in The Last Jedi, is “presumably” returning as a specter similar to those put on by his former masters, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Yoda. (Luke’s narration is strewn throughout the trailers, at least.) But what about Emperor Palpatine? And what, for that matter, are they truly capable of?
EW raises this point specifically as, though “Kenobi said in Empire Strikes Back that he ‘cannot interfere’ with Luke’s fight with Vader,” Yoda was able to “[call] down a lightning strike” in The Last Jedi. So, will Luke simply be there in spirit to guide Rey just as Obi-Wan guided him from beyond, or will he be able to pull a Yoda and do something more? Also, does this particular aspect of the force explain how the Emperor, whom Vader supposedly killed in Return of the Jedi, is able to return to the land of the living?
“That’s probably best answered by not answering it,” Abrams cryptically, and characteristically, tells EW before dropping the subject. Though Star Wars fans don’t have to search too far and wide for possible answers — let alone a helpful context or two. In Revenge of the Sith, Palpatine recalls his late master, Darth Plagueis, and his search for immortality via the force. And along with Kenobi and Yoda’s particular examples above, not to mention the Star Wars Legends (formerly known as the “Expanded Universe”) and current canon, there are plenty of references to force ghosts who managed to interact with the physical world.
(Via Entertainment Weekly)