ByEleanor Tremeer, writer at
MP staff. I talk about Star Wars a lot. Sometimes I'm paid for it. More ramblings on Twitter @ExtraTremeerial
Eleanor Tremeer

We have next to no information regarding the plot of [Star Wars: Episode VIII](tag:711868), but what we do know reveals more than you might expect. It's recently been confirmed by Daisy Ridley that yes, Star Wars VIII does pick up where The Force Awakens left off, as Rey encounters Luke Skywalker for the first time. This was hinted at in the Episode VIII teaser trailer that was released a few weeks ago.

As for the plot of Star Wars: Episode VIII, we're going to have to do a bit of detective work, drawing from the synopsis, the filming locations and hints from the comics. And there's already a pattern emerging.

Rey Continues Her Journey

Before we get into what that journey will be, the brief synopsis we've been given makes one thing very clear: Episode VIII is primarily about Rey's development. Which is awesome.

Rey took her first steps into a larger world in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and will continue her epic journey with Finn, Poe, and Luke Skywalker in the next chapter of the continuing Star Wars saga, Star Wars: Episode VIII.
Rey and Finn leap into adventure.
Rey and Finn leap into adventure.

Although Rey stands out as the main protagonist, she's still part of an ensemble cast, and it was definitely possible for Star Wars VIII to shine the spotlight on another character. The official synopsis frames the plot of the film as driven by Rey's development, positioning Finn, Poe and Luke as the other protagonists or main supporting characters.

Finn's inclusion in the synopsis is no surprise, as much of The Force Awakens dealt with his journey, too. It's nice to know that Poe Dameron's going to have a bigger role in the plot than he did in Episode VII, and it looks like Luke Skywalker is finally going to take up a more prominent and active role in Episode VIII. So what's his mission?

Delving Into Jedi History

There's been a lot of speculation recently that Luke and Rey's main aim in Episode VIII will be to find another Jedi Temple, and maybe found a new Jedi Order.

Luke Skywalker in "Star Wars VIII."
Luke Skywalker in "Star Wars VIII."

This is due in part to the rumored title of Star Wars: Episode VIII being The Search for the Jedi Temple, but honestly, that sounds far too wordy (and kind of like a children's book). It's probably safe to say that we won't know the actual title of Episode VIII until Lucasfilm announces it.

But the idea of Luke and Rey searching for Jedi relics is a possibility for the next film. iDigitalTimes recently pointed out that the filming locations are all ancient-looking places, from Dubrovnik's medieval walled city, to the caves of Mexico. StarWarsUnderworld gave us our first glimpse at the Dubrovnik set, and it looks like Rian Johnson is blending the ancient architecture with a kind of neon, futuristic aesthetic (à la Coruscant).

The "Star Wars" Dubrovnik set.
The "Star Wars" Dubrovnik set.

Considering all the different locations evoke a kind of ancient, historical feel, it does seem as though Episode VIII will be in part a quest story, as Rey and Luke travel the galaxy searching for something important, which could well be another Jedi Temple. And Luke Skywalker's mission to find Jedi relics started long before Rey was even born...

Preserving The Jedi Legacy

Shattered Empire is a comic that was released 2015. It follows Poe Dameron's mother Shara Bey, as the Rebellion continues to fight the Empire after Return of the Jedi. Shara teams up with Leia Organa, Han Solo, and finally Luke Skywalker in her missions. And Luke chooses her personally to assist him in retrieving some Jedi relics that the Empire stole:

"These are all that remain of the tree that grew at the heart of the Jedi temple on Coruscant. The Force is with them."
Luke and Shara Bey in "Shattered Empire."
Luke and Shara Bey in "Shattered Empire."

Unfortunately, Shattered Empire doesn't reveal what significance these Force-sensitive trees have or why Luke Skywalker would risk everything to steal them back from the Empire. At the end of the comic, Luke gives Shara one of the trees as a gift and she plants it on her new home on Yavin 4. The other tree is spoken for, presumably because Luke intends to plant it at the site of his new Jedi Temple, where he trained Ben Solo and the other Jedi students.

Founding Another Jedi Order

So what does Luke aim to do in Episode VIII? It's possible he'll try to start the Jedi Order again, which is what most people are speculating. But this theory takes a lot of factors as written, which we actually don't know for sure yet. E.g., the fact that Luke will agree to train Rey.

Rey reaches out to Luke Skywalker.
Rey reaches out to Luke Skywalker.

Of course, we all want this to happen. Rey is very powerful in the Force and her journey to become a Jedi seems to be the main plot for the new Star Wars trilogy. However, after Kylo Ren's massacre of the Jedi students last time, it's possible that Luke would be hesitant to train more; that's probably the very reason he went into hiding.

So far, the evidence does seem to suggest that a large part of Star Wars VIII's plot will be focused on Luke and Rey's quest to delve into Jedi history. But what this means for the wider story, and whether Luke Skywalker will start a new Jedi Order, remains to be seen.

[Header image by Chema Mansilla]


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