J.J. Abrams is the one responsible for bringing back Emperor Palpatine in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. Colin Trevorrow revealed the news in a recent interview. Trevorrow was famously brought on in 2015 to handle what at the time was being called Star Wars 9. He and Jurassic World writing partner Derek Connolly spent two years crafting the story, but there appeared to be some problems with the script. Lucasfilm brought on Jack Thorne to do a rewrite and Trevorrow left soon after, citing creative differences.

Lucasfilm convinced J.J. Abrams to come back on board to finish the Skywalker Saga after starting the latest trilogy with The Force Awakens. It was believed that when Abrams and Chris Terrio came on board, that they started from scratch when preparing for what would become The Rise of Skywalker. However, that isn't the case since Colin Trevorrow and Derek Connolly still have story credit on the movie. Trevorrow is reluctant to talk about what changed, but he did offer up one pretty big nugget of information. He explains.

"Bringing back the Emperor was an idea JJ brought to the table when he came on board. It's honestly something I never considered. I commend him for it. This was a tough story to unlock, and he found the key."

Emperor Palpatine's return in The Rise of Skywalker is a mystery that has spawned a million fan theories. But Colin Trevorrow was not going to include the iconic Star Wars villain at the time, which makes one even more curious to hear about his original plan for the movie. When pressed further about his version of the story, the director would not budge. He had this to say.

"That's not my place, especially right now. I know how hard this crew has worked over the past two years, a lot of them are working with us now on Jurassic. I want to support them as they put this film out into the world. In the end, I'm just proud to have my name in space."

Since Colin Trevorrow was fired from Star Wars, he can't really talk about The Rise of Skywalker, he can talk all about Rian Johnson's The Last Jedi. In fact, when he was still writing his version of Star Wars 9, he put in a request to Johnson, which may lead to some more information about his story. Trevorrow wanted two characters to meet up in The Last Jedi. He explains.

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"I just asked Rian if he could include a little moment where Rey and Poe meet for the first time. They're such beloved characters, it felt right for them to have some history in the next movie. I thought the way he did it was perfect."

Due to contracts and legal issues, we may never know what exactly Colin Trevorrow's version of Star Wars 9 was going to look like. Maybe a few years down the road we'll learn more, but it's already pretty interesting to know that he was not going to include Emperor Palpatine at all. Who was going to be the big villain? The interview with Colin Trevorrow was originally conducted by Empire.

Kevin Burwick at Movieweb
Kevin Burwick