After learning that upcoming Star Wars sequel The Last Jedi’s title referred to multiple force practitioners a few weeks ago, we assumed the name was concerned only with old hand (no pun intended) Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) and newbie Rey (Daisy Ridley), trying to save the Jedi order while facing off against the First Order.
However, it now seems like there could be one more Jedi in the pot for the next adventure – because the man behind iconic Star Wars character Yoda has hinted that he might be involved in episode VIII, even if he can’t really talk about it.
“I feel like I’m a prisoner at war here, and I can only give you my name, rank and serial number,” Frank Oz, who puppeteered the original live-action Yoda and voiced both the puppet and CGI version of the character in all his appearances, told Variety when asked about rumours of his return.
“To be true to the people who asked me, and they are kind of my family, I have to say I’ve been asked not to talk about it. I love Yoda. I would be happy to talk to you about it at the time they let me.”
Now, this sounds to us like Oz is a fully paid-up member of the “don’t talk about Star Wars because Disney have your soul in a contract” club, and given how closely The Force Awakens stuck to the structure of A New Hope, it makes sense that sequel The Empire Strikes Back (which saw Yoda’s first appearance) might influence key parts of The Last Jedi as well.
Of course, the biggest question mark about Yoda’s involvement revolves around the fact that the character died in his last chronological appearance in 1983’s Return of the Jedi – but in the world of Star Wars, that’s not necessarily a dealbreaker. Jedi have long been shown to be able to appear as “force ghost” apparitions after their death, so it could be Yoda will return this way.
Alternatively, he could appear in some sort of flashback or vision, as the character already did (using archive audio of Oz’s voice) for Rey’s “forceback” sequence in The Force Awakens.
But however they pull it off, it’s good to know that there’s a chance of seeing Yoda back in action. Pretty excited, we are.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi will be released in UK cinemas on 15th December