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.”
It feels impossible, but today wrapped photography on Episode IX. There is no adequate way to thank this truly magical crew and cast. I’m forever indebted to you all. pic.twitter.com/138AprtFuZ
— JJ Abrams (@jjabrams) February 15, 2019
This note provides a touching bookend to Abrams’s first-ever tweet in August, announcing the first day of filming on Episode IX.
Bittersweet starting this next chapter without Carrie, but thanks to an extraordinary cast and crew, we are ready to go. Grateful for @rianjohnson and special thanks to George Lucas for creating this incredible world and beginning a story of which we are lucky to be a part. #IX pic.twitter.com/FOfnGwVut5
— JJ Abrams (@jjabrams) August 1, 2018
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.
Words can’t express enough how this photo makes me feel, in the same way words can’t truly express how Star Wars makes me feel.
— Samantha (@SamDianeK) February 15, 2019
Wondering how many fans are currently blowing up this photo and studying the folks in the background, hoping one of those fuzzy images turns out to be @HamillHimself … #StarWars #EpisodeIX #LukeLives https://t.co/pO38pxhduv
— Gary Miereanu (@SuperPRGuy) February 15, 2019
Rey is back to her fauxhawk from The Force Awakens, Finn now has micro twists (@JohnBoyega represent protective Black hairstyles!), and Poe has a mustache. I’m loving the hair journey that is happening here! Can’t wait for the first trailer!#StarWars #EpisodeIX https://t.co/xFEDPuGIix
— The Cali Nerd (@TheCaliNerd) February 15, 2019
IT’S A WRAP! It all started with this great guy @jjabrams so felt a fitting way to finish. The entire Cast & Crew really care about what we do. So much commitment from everyone. Building & performing R2D2 for the last five years has been an honour. #starwars #EpisodeIX #r2d2 pic.twitter.com/XmXowBlorl
— Lee Towersey – R2D2 (@artoodetoo) February 15, 2019
What’s the title, JJ? WHAT’S THE TITLE???!!!
Congrats on completing filming!
— Richard Par (@RichTPar) February 15, 2019
Star Wars: Episode IX hits theaters on Dec. 20.
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