The world premiere of the third and final full-length Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens trailer is finally here along with your chance to buy opening weekend movie tickets! In this latest teaser, each of the new protagonists gets a line of dialogue to go with brief clips of their origins, hinting at how they cross paths in the saga’s next installment. If you do not watch yet, this is your chance, or watch again from Star Wars Channel on YouTube:
Below is a (mostly) chronological trailer breakdown of the characters, locations, and action set pieces highlighted in the latest Star Wars 7 trailer. Spoiler Warning: We pull in information from various reports and rumors to explain the scenes and piece the threads together. If you read ahead, do so knowing that you will be spoiled.
1) Rey’s Origins on Jakku
“I’m no one.” – Rey
Rey (Daisy Ridley)’s Jakku Workshop
Rey’s a scavenger and an explorer, like many among the small population inhabiting the outer rim desert planet of Jakku. Her situation mirrors that of Anakin Skywalker’s on Tattooine in Episode I and Luke Skywalker’s on Tatooine in Episode IV.
Rey’s Explorer Costume
Rey is suited up in her gear, staff included, scaling the innards of Star Destroyer. This ship is the “Inflictor” and its Imperial captain crashed it on Jakku during a skirmish in orbit that took place a year after the Battle of Endor (Return of the Jedi) to prevent New Republic forces from capturing it. It’s been 30 years since this event and we can see familiar tech in the hangar bay, from the wing panels of Tie Fighters to a Lambda-class T-4a shuttle.
Rey seemingly longs to leave this planet, again mirroring the story arcs of both Anakin and Luke, and is seen watching a starship enter orbit in the distance. Is all of this foreshadowing her journey to becoming a Jedi? Or is the imagery simply playing with our nostalgia?
2) What does Finn fight for?
“I was raised to do one thing. I’ve got nothing to fight for.” – Finn
Finn joins the Resistance
Finn has a mysterious past, one he wishes to distance himself from, and according to director J.J. Abrams he has an intentionally withheld last name for reasons unknown. Finn’s a fighter, a soldier, and trained to serve The First Order as a Stormtrooper but he’s inherently a good person. The trailer depicts his Tie Fighter being hit by what could be a missile of sorts, which sends the craft hurling down to the planet Jakku where he survives and locates a settlement known as Cratertown. Here he meets Rey and her droid BB-8.
Finn’s Tie Fighter crash lands on Jakku
Finn finds Jakku’s Cratertown
We can only assume this sequence follows the clips from previous trailers where a rogue Tie Fighter is seeing blasting away vehicles and Stormtroopers inside the hangar of a First Order Star Destroyer.
Later we see Finn alongside Rey on the Millenium Falcon, learning of the legend of the Jedi from Han Solo, and eventually Finn buddies up with Resistance pilot Poe Dameron. Most importantly, Luke’s old blue lightsaber is used by Finn who stands up to Kylo Ren. More on that later…
3) Kylo Ren and his Knights
“Nothing will stand in our way. I will finish what you started.” – Kylo Ren
Kylo Ren’s Helmet
Darth Vader’s Helmet
Kylo Ren’s real name and heritage remain unknown but his identity, much like his unique weapon and mask, we know is crafted by him. The name “Ren” comes from the character’s association with the Knights of Ren – a group that relishes in Sith artifacts and history. Kylo’s helmet is a nod to Darth Vader which explains him having possession of Vader’s burned remains.
Kylo Ren observes the Starkiller?
In this trailer, Kylo Ren stands tall at a view port of either a First Order ship – potentially his shuttle seen landing later in the trailer – or a command tower on The First Order’s Starkiller base, promising to fulfill the legacy of Darth Vader. A bright light floods the backdrop, possibly a projectile moving from right to left from The First Order’s new super weapon. More on that later. After we see Kylo Ren torturing Resistance pilot Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac) there’s a quick shot of a forest being completely annihilated. Is this a result of the Starkiller?
A notable highlight here is the shot (below) of Kylo standing with similarly dressed commandos, perhaps the Knights of Ren, or elite First Order soldiers. There are exactly seven in total and we’ve heard the number “seven” is significant.
Knights of Ren?
4) A Hero’s Journey
“It’s true. All of it. The dark side, the Jedi, they’re real.” – Han Solo
Han Solo educates Finn & Rey
The Jedi are legends, a myth some don’t believe. Han Solo explains to Finn and Rey the truth when they meet up and escape First Order Tie Fighters by flying the Millennium Falcon through the ISD Inflictor wreckage on Jakku. All signs point to them having found Luke’s lightsaber and now they’re on a quest to locate him. That explains the conversation over a star map before they blast into hyperspace. Rumors over the months indicate that no one’s seen Luke in many years.
Where they go next is unclear but from leaked toy descriptions and the imagery of the place they go to in the trailer it could be the green and lush planet Takodana where we might meet a new protocol droid ME-8D9 (nicknamed “Emmie” for short). According to rumors and reports it is here where Han Solo seeks the wisdom of Maz Kanata (Lupita Nyong’o’s CGI character) and the group heads into her castle where they learn of the history of Luke and his blue lightsaber, and how it could be connected to both Kylo Ren and Rey.
The tree-heavy environments here are similar to that of the Resistance’s base so it could be the same planet as that. This also seems to be the same location where the First Order invasion force is seen (Tie Fighters and troop transports). If so, this “castle” as it’s referred to as in rumors seems to be blown to bits (compare the architecture in above and below images) and that’s when the X-Wings come in to fight off the First Order forces.
X-Wings approach the ruins of Maz’s Castle? X-Wings engage First Order forces
5) X-Wing Squadrons
This isn’t the only time we’ll see Poe Dameron and his fellow pilots engage First Order fighter squadrons. The final set piece seems to be against The First Order’s Starkiller base which is described on the official Star Wars Databank website to be an “ice planet converted into a stronghold… and armed with a fiercely destructive new weapon capable of destroying entire star systems.”
BB-8 is Poe Dameron’s Astromech and the Starkiller base trench
This new super weapon was a topic of discussion yesterday when it appeared on the new Star Wars 7 poster in the shape of a new Death Star but thanks to this trailer we can confirm that yes, the ice planet is actually the weapon. Note the background of these snow planet shots revealing a large trench which matches the design of the super weapon featured in the latest Star Wars 7 poster (see below). The planet itself, is the super weapon.
6) Other Questions
Finn faces off against Kylo Ren. Is Finn force-sensitive and that is Luke’s first lightsaber? How did Finn get it?
Poe Dameron is captured by Kylo Ren and interrogated. How is he freed? What does Kylo learn?
Similarly, in this shot below, our heroes are seemingly captured after Maz’s Castle explodes? Where is Rey?
Han, Chewie & Finn surrender? Rey crying. Does Rey lose someone close? Who?
Leia and Han together again
In this next shot, Leia and Han share an emotional moment. Have they also lost someone? Is The First Order defeating them? Is Han Solo going on a suicide mission? Have they not seen each other in ages? From the Resistance pilots seen in the background, they seem to be preparing for one of the film’s major battles.
Official plot details remain as scarce as appearances by the legendary Luke Skywalker who may end up not being promoted at all in the marketing materials. And that’s okay. The more mystery the better.
Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens is directed by J.J. Abrams and stars Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew and Max Von Sydow. Kathleen Kennedy, J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burk are producing with Tommy Harper and Jason McGatlin serving as executive producers. The screenplay is by Lawrence Kasdan & J.J. Abrams and Michael Arndt.
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.