A cure for your case of the Mondays: New Star Wars footage!
Disney and Lucasfilm unveiled a quick new clip of Star Wars: The Force Awakens on Sunday night during the ABC-broadcast American Music Awards, along with two brand new 30-second TV spots. All three of the mini-ads focus in large part on Rey, a young scavenger played by newcomer Daisy Ridley.
In the 15-second clip — the first full tidbit of the film to be revealed to the public — Rey, Finn (John Boyega) and BB-8 try to outrun laser cannon fire from pursuing TIE Fighters in the Jakku desert.The photo below, from another recent clip, shows the bazaar-like building from which they are fleeing.
Finn thinks it’s a hopeless endeavor, but Rey points out that a quad jumper — a new vehicle for The Force Awakens — ahead might provide their escape. Finn wonders who might be able to pilot it; Rey fires back that she can handle the job.
Unfortunately for our heroes, the TIE Fighters destroy their ride, leaving them pretty vulnerable in the vast wasteland of the Rey’s home planet.
We don’t get much more than that, but at least we find out that Rey is a natural leader in times of duress. Meanwhile, in the first TV ad that was aired (below), we get a new clue about Rey’s origin and future. She lives on the desert planet of Jakku, but speculation has been that she’s a descendent of the Skywalker clan. As in an earlier Japanese trailer, she tells Maz Kanata (the CGI pirate played by Luipta Nyong'o) that, “I know all about waiting, for my family,” but this time, Kanata responds. “Dear child,” she says, “the belonging you seek is not behind you. It is ahead.” It’s a cryptic comment, but one that at least promises some real excitement for the audience.
Elsewhere in the clip, we get a new glimpse at a whole mass of First Order Stormtroopers, all of them raising their arms in front of General Hux (Domhnall Gleeson) in a gesture that’s very reminiscent of a Nazi salute. There were semi-subtle nods to the Third Reich in the original trilogy — particularly with the design of the Empire’s uniforms — but Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams seems to really be taking it up a notch this time.
But that’s not all!
In the third and final ad, we get a better look at some of the aerial battles in store for us, as well as a glimpse at some of the brave pilots fighting for the Resistance.
Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac), it is revealed, commands a squadron of X-Wings. He hasn’t gotten much play in the promos thus far, but the self-proclaimed “best damn pilot in the galaxy” obviously will play a big role in battling Kylo Ren and his evil friends. As the clip shows, he commands both the red and blue X-Wing squads — one of which includes a pilot that looks a whole lot like Nien Nunb!
The semi-obscure character from the planet Sullust features in Return of the Jedi, when he helps Lando Calrissian pilot the Millennium Falcon during the Battle of Endor. He’s a fan favorite, despite his relatively small role, and a whole backstory has been created for him; like Han Solo, he was a smuggler who joined the Rebel Alliance.
Also of note in the TV spot: A female X-Wing pilot. There were precious few of those in the first trilogy, though it was revealed a few years ago that four of them were initially in Return of the Jedi before being cut in the edit.
This time around, it looks like the lineup of heroes will be a little more balanced.
For all of Yahoo Movies’ coverage of Star Wars: The Force Awakens (out December 18th!), click here.