After Star Wars Episode VIII‘s official title was revealed as Star Wars: The Last Jedi, it didn’t take long for eagle-eyed fans to note that the two episodes of the trilogy so far can be read in one fell swoop. As pointed out earlier today on this very site, when you combine the titles of Star Wars: The Force Awakens and its sequel, they become one longer sentence: “The Force awakens the last Jedi.”
If that’s the case, and fans have cracked the code, then that would also give us a better idea to whom the title of the latter film is actually referring – or not, as even that sentence can still be interpreted multiple ways. The first thought would be that this is much more pointing to Rey – she is the one whom the Force awakened within, after all, and it makes “The Last Jedi” into a nice bait-and-switch title. That’s because those words directly refer to Luke Skywalker in the opening crawl of TFA, and also in the dialogue of Supreme Leader Snoke.
So, if the title is meant to make you think about Luke but the extended “The Force awakens the last Jedi” seems to focus more on Rey, it plays nicely to the duality of the wording – and of Star Wars as a whole.
However, it could also take on a more metaphorical than literal meaning, as Luke Skywalker on his self-imposed exile has been “asleep” in the scheme of the galaxy. Now, he’s being awakened, the last true Jedi, to find a way to push back the forces of evil once more.
Either way, there’s something else going on here, and it does seem intentional for them to at least be able to be read together. While both films were referred to by an episode number in development, the titles have the episode number removed in official materials (but added back into the opening crawls). That means they are meant to be read by the general public as Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and it makes all of this speculation come from a much more plausible place.
We, along with fans, will continue to speculate all the way up to the film’s release, most likely. We should get a trailer in the relatively near future that will give us more to think about, if not at a major sporting event in the upcoming weeks, then certainly by the time Star Wars Celebration Orlando rolls around in April.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi, from writer/director Rian Johnson, is in post-production now for a December 15, 2017 release. The film follows-up and continues the story of the next generation of the saga as Rey, Poe, Finn, and Kylo Ren find their place in the galaxy and follow the legacy of Luke Skywalker, Leia, and Han Solo. Daisy Ridley returns to star as Rey, with other returning stars John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver, Domhnall Gleeson, Gwendoline Christie, Peter Mayhew, Andy Serkis, Anthony Daniels, Lupita Nyong’o Mark Hamill, and Carrie Fisher as General Leia Organa. Benicio Del Toro and Laura Dern join the cast in as-yet-unrevealed roles.