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Production Begins on ‘Star Wars: Episode IX’

New and returning cast announced for the J.J. Abram’s helmed final Skywalker Saga installment. 

Walt Disney Studios has just announced that Star Wars: Episode IX, the final installment of the Skywalker saga, will begin filming at London’s Pinewood Studios on August 1, 2018. J.J. Abrams returns to direct, from a screenplay he co-wrote with Chris Terrio.

Returning cast members include Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Kelly Marie Tran, Joonas Suotamo, and Billie Lourd. Joining the cast of Episode IX are Naomi Ackie and Richard E. Grant, in addition to veteran Star Wars actors Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, and Billy Dee Williams, reprising his role as Lando Calrissian.

The role of Leia Organa will once again be played by Carrie Fisher, using previously unreleased footage shot for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. “We desperately loved Carrie Fisher,” says Abrams. “Finding a truly satisfying conclusion to the Skywalker saga without her eluded us. We were never going to recast or use a CG character. With the support and blessing from her daughter, Billie, we have found a way to honor Carrie’s legacy and role as Leia in Episode IX by using unseen footage we shot together in Episode VII.”

Composer John Williams, who has scored every chapter in the Star Wars saga since 1977’s A New Hope, will return on Episode IX.

Star Wars: Episode IX will be produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Abrams, and Michelle Rejwan, and executive produced by Callum Greene and Jason McGatlin. The crew includes Dan Mindel (director of photography), Rick Carter and Kevin Jenkins (co-production designers), Michael Kaplan (costume designer), Neal Scanlan (creature and droid FX), Maryann Brandon and Stefan Grube (editors), Roger Guyett (production VFX supervisor), Tommy Gormley (1st AD), and Victoria Mahoney (2nd unit director).

The film’s release is scheduled for December 2019.

Source: Walt Disney Studios