Lucasfilm has released a new featurette for The Rise of Skywalker. Instead of packing this special look with new footage, they've instead opted to give us a look back at the impact a galaxy far, far away has had on our little planet ever since it first arrived in 1977. This movie has been billed as the final chapter in the Skywalker saga and this preview leans heavily on that idea, which makes for an emotional watch.

The video juxtaposes some of the mania that surrounded the original Star Wars trilogy, against similar mania within pop culture that has surrounded the prequel trilogy and the more recent sequels. It also gives us a few little behind-the-scenes looks at the production of Episode IX. We also get a look at a ton of merchandise throughout the years and how the series has evolved since George Lucas first brought it to life more than 40 years ago. The Force Awakens and Star Wars: The Last Jedi director J.J. Abrams reveals his first memory of Star Wars via some voiceover.

"The first time I saw the words Star Wars I was eleven years old, it was in a magazine and I remember seeing the words and saying aloud, 'Star Wars.'"

Instead of loading this down with new footage, it instead contextualizes what Star Wars has meant to the world for the time that it's been around. This is a fandom that has been passed down to multiple generations now. There are tons of references from throughout all of pop culture. It also focuses heavily on the people who helped shape this franchise into what it's become recounting their experiences. For anyone who has considered themselves a fan of this franchise at one time or another, this feels very emotional.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is billed as the conclusion of the seminal Skywalker saga. It's promised that new legends will be born and the final battle for freedom will be fought. As far as specifics go, Lucasfilm and J.J. Abrams are trying to keep a relatively tight lid on this one. The full cast includes Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Anthony Daniels, Naomi Ackie, Domhnall Gleeson, Richard E. Grant, Lupita Nyong'o, Keri Russell, Joonas Suotamo, Kelly Marie Tran, Ian McDiarmid and Billy Dee Williams.

The movie is directed by J.J. Abrams, who took over after Colin Trevorrow departed the project. It's produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Abrams and Michelle Rejwan. Callum Greene, Tommy Gormley and Jason McGatlin are on board as executive producers. Chris Terrio and Abrams penned the screenplay, working from a story by Derek Connolly, Trevorrow, Abrams and Terrio. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is set to hit theaters on December 20. Be sure to check out the new featurette for yourself from the Star Wars YouTube channel.

Ryan Scott at Movieweb
Ryan Scott