2:12pm PT by Graeme McMillan
'Star Wars': Daisy Ridley Teases More Luke Skywalker in 'Episode VIII'
If fans hoped 2017's Star Wars: Episode VIII would reveal what happened immediately after the end of last year's The Force Awakens, then Daisy Ridley has some good news for you. And maybe some bad news, too.
"It's two hours of me and Mark Hamill staring at each other," she joked while talking to MTV on the Oscars red carpet Sunday evening. "And, like, at the end of the film, you're not quite sure if he's going to take [the lightsaber] or not; [Episode] IX opens the same way."
Sarcasm aside, Ridley did confirm what many had suspected since the release of the video announcement that Episode VIII had started production in mid-February: that the movie really does open directly after the conclusion of The Force Awakens.
"When we went back to Skellig to do the opening of VIII, it was so crazy doing the same scene with a different crew of people," she said, adding that she's been spending a lot of time rehearsing with Hamill. "He's amazing to rehearse with, and I'm very excited to be doing the rest of the stuff."
This will make Episode VIII the first Star Wars movie to pick up directly after an earlier installment; Episode II through VII all opened after a period of years since what had come before, with events that occurred in the interim explained via the opening text crawl.
Talking about the plot of Episode VIII, Ridley avoided revealing any secrets but said, "It's such a good story. Seriously. Luke is so cool in this one." Good news for those bemoaning his relative absence in The Force Awakens…
Star Wars: Episode VIII is scheduled to open Dec. 15, 2017.