J.J. Abrams announces the end of 'Star Wars: Episode IX' with heartfelt photo: 'I'm forever indebted to you all'

Ethan Alter
·Senior Writer, Yahoo Entertainment
J.J. Abrams said goodbye to his <em>Episode IX</em> cast with this pic of the cast hugging it out. (Photo: J.J. Abrams via Twitter)
J.J. Abrams said goodbye to his Episode IX cast with this pic of the cast hugging it out. (Photo: J.J. Abrams via Twitter)

The Force awakened on May 16, 2014, when J.J. Abrams called “Action!” on the first entry in a new Star Wars trilogy. Jump (via hyperspace) ahead to Feb. 15, 2019, and Abrams has officially called “Cut!” on the final film in the nine-movie Skywalker Saga. The director posted an emotional note on Twitter on Friday announcing the end of principal photography on the still-untitled, Star Wars: Episode IX. “It feels impossible, but today wrapped photography on Episode IX,” he wrote, above an image of the movie’s stars — Daisy Ridley, John Boyega and Oscar Isaac — sharing an embrace. “There is no adequate way to thank this truly magical crew and cast. I’m forever indebted to you all.”

This note provides a touching bookend to Abrams’s first-ever tweet in August, announcing the first day of filming on Episode IX.

That first photo featured an out-of-focus Boyega and a more clearly visible Chewbacca in the Millennium Falcon cockpit. Boyega is at the center of Abrams’s final image from the set as well, sandwiched between Ridley and Isaac in what appears to be a desert environment. It’s worth noting that although this setting may or may not be the final scene of Episode IX, it is the final scene for these three actors. And as the crew bustles around them, the three are visibly moved to be facing the end of their three-movie journey together; Isaac, in particular, appears to be near tears.

Although this photo doesn’t provide any overt spoilers on what’s in store for their alter egos, Rey, Finn and Poe, that hasn’t stopped the internet from drawing conclusions about what’s in store for Episode IX. Yahoo Entertainment’s own eagle-eyed Star Wars experts have noted that the desert setting could be either Jakku — where Rey and Finn first met — or Tatooine, where the last Jedi, Luke Skywalker, hails from. Rey also has the staff she carried in The Force Awakens before leaving it on the Falcon before facing Kylo Ren in The Last Jedi. And Poe is notably not wearing his Resistance uniform, instead rocking a more casual shirt-and-suspenders combo, suggesting that he’s the pilot flying the Falcon in Abrams’s first photo.

But that’s just, like, our opinion, man. Here’s what the rest of Twitter thinks about Abrams’s farewell to Star Wars.

Star Wars: Episode IX hits theaters on Dec. 20.

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