It may be the biggest question hanging over Star Wars Episode 7 - what will happen to Luke Skywalker? And, as yet, we don't have any answers.
Or rather, we have several answers, we just don't know which ones are to be trusted, and which are misinformation deliberately circulated by the studio, or complete internet fantasy.
However, in order to discuss any of them, we have to wade through some pretty major potential:
Star Wars Episode 7 SPOILERS
So, let's begin.
Ever since fans heard that the original cast would be returning for Star Wars 7, and saw Mark Hamill wearing his "contractually obliged" beard, they have wanted to know what Han, Leia & Luke (especially Luke) would be doing in the new movie.
And slowly, some details were revealed. The first of these to emerge was probably the information that Luke Skywalker had become a sort of Jedi Hermit, living alone in the wilderness - specifically, the wilderness of the Irish island of Skellig Michael, where filming took place - like Obi Wan Kenobi before him.
To a lot of fans, this decision seemed to make sense for Star Wars Episode 7. Having Luke follow the path of the master who initiated him into the ways of the Force would seem a logical decision.
On the other hand, Obi Wan was on the run from the Empire and Darth Vader, who wanted the death of all the Jedi. Surely now, with the Empire defeated, Luke would have nothing to hide from? So what is the explanation?
There are, more or less, 3 of them - which we'll go through in chronological order.
Luke Skywalker Plot Theory No. 1: A Hunted Man
Around the same time as fans were sharing their theories about what was going on at Skellig Michael, another image was leaked which painted a much more sinister picture.
A dark, cloaked, robotic figure was holding up Darth Vader's cracked helmet, staring at it enigmatically. Undoubtedly, this was a Sith - and the first reports claimed that this character (who has since been named the "grave robber" and the "Sith Inquisitor") has previously been working for Darth Vader, and was now on Luke's trail, wanting his master's murderer dead.
Could the knowledge that he was being hunted have sent Luke into hiding?
Luke Skywalker Plot Theory No. 2: Too Powerful For His Own (or the Galaxy's) Good
The second theory as to why Luke Skywalker had retreated from the world in [Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens](movie:711158), gave it a different spin. Rather than being hunted, and fearing that he would be struck down by a dangerous Sith, Luke had in fact gone into hiding because he was too powerful.
With a single look, he could bring down a starship, his Jedi powers had become so strong that he could converse for hours with the dead - but left him with an unreliable grip on reality. Fearing that his new powers could cause an imbalance in the galaxy, Luke retreats. According to this version, it is up to Kira (Daisy Ridley's character), to restore Luke Skywalker to the world.
Luke Skywalker Plot Theory No. 3: A Turn To The Dark Side!?
The final plot theory about Luke Skywalker is the one that has really got fans talking.
Described as Star Wars Episode 7's "I am your father" moment, this theory sees the very "grave robber" character that Luke is supposedly in hiding from in the first theory revealed - when Kira finally tracks him down to his Skellig Michael hideout - to in fact *be* Luke Skywalker himself!
That's right, that cyborg monstrosity is Luke, who has, like his father before him, turned to the dark side!
What's more, these theories seemed to gain some credence with the latest batch of leaked concept art, which sees Kira entering a dark cave like room, to find the hooded Sith characer there waiting for her!
Of course, just because Kira finds him there, doesn't mean he is Luke - and we could even be made to believe he *was*, only for a later twist, perhaps in [Star Wars: Episode VIII](movie:711868), to change the story again.
So which of these Star Wars Episode 7 Luke Skywalker plot theories do you believe, or do you have one of your own? Write in with your thoughts below the line!