Stargazing

The next ‘Star Wars’ movie has a title, but what does it mean?

The title of the next “Star Wars” film announced Monday, Jan. 23, is “The Last Jedi.”
The title of the next “Star Wars” film announced Monday, Jan. 23, is “The Last Jedi.” .

“Star Wars: Episode VIII” now has a name: “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.”

We assume, of course, this refers to Luke Skywalker, who — spoiler alert? — showed up silently at the very end of “The Force Awakens.”

But maybe it’s Rey?

Or maybe, in the words of Jedi Master Yoda, there is another.

The title was announced Monday from the official “Star Wars” Twitter.

The full text of the tweet makes you wonder: If we’re officially calling the “Episodes” “The Skywalker Saga,” are all those people who say Rey is Luke’s daughter on the right track? Why else would she be part of the story if she wasn’t the next generation of Skywalkers?

Regardless, fans were having fun on the old Twitter machine:

This isn’t the first chapter in the “Star Wars” story to use that title.

“The Last Jedi” is the name of a “Star Wars” novel by Michael Reaves and Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff. It focused on a Jedi named Jax Pavan who fought the Empire, post Order 66, in “Revenge of the Sith,” in the Courscant underground. “The Last Jedi” — the book — originally was titled “Jedi Dawn” but changed when Bohnhoff noted that title had been used on another book.

There also was a series of young adult novels called “The Last of the Jedi” that featured Obi-Wan Kenobi and took place around the same time.

Of course, most of that continuity was wiped out when Disney took over the reins of the “Star Wars” money-generating machine.

There’s also a pretty good “Last Jedi” fan film floating around on YouTube that’s probably going to get crushed with viewers over the next few hours, now that the name of the next official film has been announced. You can watch it below.

As for the next film, it’s directed by Rian Johnson, who directed the excellent high school noir “Brick” and the time-travel thriller “Looper.” Both starred Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

“The Last Jedi” is due in theaters Dec. 15.

While you’re waiting, you might want to check out this story and video about a Kansas City couple at Saints Customs who make finely detailed “Star Wars” costumes.

David Frese: 816-234-4463, @DavidFrese

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