When the trailer for a Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise Of Skywalker first launched the presence of Ian McDiarmid took a number of people by surprise.

Lucasfilm since revealed that Scots actor McDiarmid will indeed appear in the new movie as Sheev Palpatine, the Emperor, despite his on-screen death thirty years ago in Return Of The Jedi.

Since then there has been a lot of speculation regarding his appearance.  Force ghosts? Possession of another character? Never really died?  A recording?

In an interview with IGN, series star Daisy Ridley revealed that Palpatine’s return isn’t just a brief cameo.  His role is key to the movie overall:

“He’s the biggest baddie in Star Wars history. Now that we’ve done the story, I’m like, it couldn’t have happened any other way. It had to be that. But he’s very instrumental to the plot of the film. It’s not just like he appears again; it’s all explained.”

Kelly Marie Tran took time out from saving what we love to also chime in on the interview. She said that the storyline to this final installment is thematically aligned to one of her favourite Star Wars motifs, that of redemption.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is scheduled to hit cinemas on December 20th, and we get to see if JJ Abrams really can save what we love.

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