The Star Wars sequel trilogy that fans have been clamoring for since Return of the Jedi hit theaters in 1983 will come to an end next year with the release of Star Wars: Episode IX. Co-written and directed by J.J. Abrams, the final movie obviously won’t look anything like what George Lucas would have built had he retained the rights to the franchise, but thanks to Luke Skywalker himself, we know a little bit about how the creator would have handled things.
Speaking to IGN about the differences between how directors Rian Johnson (The Last Jedi) and Abrams approached his character, Mark Hamill suddenly shifted the conversation and revealed that George Lucas had a different idea in mind for the legendary Jedi Knight Luke Skywalker in his own take on the finale.
“I happen to know that George didn’t kill Luke until the end of [Episode] 9, after he trained Leia,” Hamill said during the interview with IGN. “Which is another thread that was never played upon [in The Last Jedi].”
This appears to be the first definitive confirmation from anyone directly involved with the franchise that Lucas would have killed off Luke in the final episode had he made any additional Star Wars movies after Revenge of the Sith. And although we got to see a glimpse of Leia’s connection to the force in The Last Jedi, it sounds like her training would have played a much larger role in the Lucas version of Episode IX, as it did in the Extended Universe.
As IGN points out, Lucas discussed potential plans for a third Star Wars trilogy on multiple occasions, so it’s hard to know exactly which of these Hamill is referring to in his comments. We do know that Lucas wrote a treatment for the sequel trilogy after Disney acquired the IP — perhaps that is what Hamill read.