Warning: Spoilers ahead.
Mark Hamill just gave a glimpse at what could have been.
“Star Wars” creator George Lucas had other plans for Hamill’s character, Luke Skywalker, the actor said in an interview with IGN published Monday.
“I happen to know that George didn’t kill Luke until the end of ‘[Episode] IX,’ after he trained Leia,” Hamill said, referring to a forthcoming film in the series.
This is the first we’ve heard of Lucas ever planning to kill off Luke. The character dies at the end of 2017′s “The Last Jedi,” which was directed by Rian Johnson. Lucas sold the rights to the series to Disney and is not writing or directing any installments in the latest trilogy.
This is also the first we’ve heard of Leia becoming a Jedi in one of the films. She is portrayed as one in other “Star Wars” products. To many fans’ dismay, Lucasfilm announced in April 2014 that stories depicted in books, video games and comics would no longer be considered authorized “canon.”
With Luke’s exit in “The Last Jedi” ― though he could return as a “Force ghost” ― and Carrie Fisher’s death in December 2016, Lucas’ version is not one we’re ever going to see.
Lucas did famously save one character from an early demise: Han Solo. Screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan and Harrison Ford, who played Han, thought the character should die in the first trilogy.
J.J. Abrams is returning to the series to direct the as-yet-untitled “Star Wars: Episode IX,” which is scheduled for a Dec. 20, 2019, release. He directed “The Force Awakens,” the first entry in the latest trilogy.