New ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Images And Plot Details Tease A Turn To The Dark Side

Oh yeah, Star Wars: The Last Jedi…it’s right around the corner, isn’t it? With so much talk about Rian Johnson’s upcoming trilogy, that will take us away from the Skywalker saga (thank God), and the news of J.J. Abrams coming back for Episode IX, it would’ve been easy to forget. As we’re inching closer to the movie’s release, details are starting to emerge that hopefully aren’t spoiling anything crucial.

EW has dropped a batch of new photos and cover images, but more importantly they chatted with director Rian Johnson. He’s got the unenviable task of living up to The Empire Strikes Back (not so much Attack of the Clones) in spear-heading the crucial middle chapter of the saga, the one where everything goes to shit and heroes are left on the brink. The Dark Side’s pull seems stronger than ever based on everything we’ve seen, and while it doesn’t look like Luke Skywalker will succumb to temptation, Johnson is going to make you think about the possibility…

“There’s a history in Star Wars of the attraction between the light and the dark, whether it’s the story of Anakin basically turning from this sweet kid and seeing his seduction to the dark side, or even with Luke,” Johnson says.

“Even though you never really believe he’s going to go over to the dark side, the whole revelation of ‘I am your father’ has to do with Vader and this darkness that [Luke] thought he could just dismiss as ‘That’s the bad guy. I don’t have any of him in me. Suddenly he realizes ‘No, I come from him. I have quite a bit of him inside me.’”

Even if Luke doesn’t go dark, he’s still not going to be the calm and serene Jedi master that Obi-Wan Kenobi was. According to Mark Hamill, he may have more in common with Master Yoda’s teachings…

“[Director] Rian Johnson could have just made me another benevolent Jedi teacher but, you know, we’ve seen that before,” Hamill says. “And no one can do it better than Sir Alec Guinness. Instead, this Luke is a broken warrior. And he sees dread in this young pupil, rather than new hope.”

Meanwhile, current baddie Kylo Ren is coping with a new sensation, a sort of begrudging respect for Rey that they share power of equal might…

“He has been aware of this ability in himself from such a young age, and I don’t think there’s a lot of people around him who are on the same level,” Adam Driver said.“I think that there is something familiar there, as well as something to be feared, or something … that he can’t quite place.”

The story delves into some of the other parings in the film, including Finn (John Boyega) as he recovers from a near-fatal injury and finds a new fan in Resistance mechanic Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran). Also, we get more info on Laura Dern’s character, Vice Admiral Amilyn Holdo, and the tension between her and ace pilot Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac) over loyalties to General Leia (Carrie Fisher).

Star Wars: The Last Jedi opens December 15th!