The second day of D23 2019 was dominated by the presentations from Lucasfilm and Marvel Studios, who gave guests a look at what’s coming next. First to hit theaters is the final film in the new Star Wars trilogy, The Rise of Skywalker, which debuted its new poster at the event.
Billed as the conclusion to the Skywalker saga, Episode IX brings back favorites from the past two films as well as familiar faces from a galaxy far, far away. Director, writer, and producer J.J. Abrams and President of Lucasfilm Kathleen Kennedy introduced nine of the stars of the film: Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Anthony Daniels, Naomi Ackie, Keri Russell, Joonas Suotamo, Kelly Marie Tran and Billy Dee Williams, plus special appearances from R2-D2, BB-8 and the new droid D-O. Fans were also treated to a sneak peek of The Rise of Skywalker.
The footage showed Rey and Kylo Ren fighting on debris in a rising tide. At first, Rey appears to be holding a single-blade red lightsaber but then she flips it a la Darth Maul to reveal it’s a dual lightsaber! That plus her dark hood may be hinting that Rey is exploring the Dark Side. Star Destroyers and X-wings fill the sky about the duel and supposedly Darth Vader’s breathing is heard in the background.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker hit theaters on December 20, 2019.
Although they had just conquered San Diego Comic Con last month, Marvel Studios still showed up to D23 with a few treats for fans. President of Marvel Studios, Kevin Feige, welcomed Black Panther director and co-writer Ryan Coogler to the stage to reveal that Black Panther 2 (working title) is scheduled for May 6, 2022. Feige also provided more details about Black Widow, the first film of Phase Four of the MCU. Scarlett Johansson will reprise her role as Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow, David Harbour plays Alexei the Red Guardian, and Florence Pugh plays Yelena in the Cate Shortland-directed film. Black Widow is due in theaters on May 1, 2020.
In addition, Feige invited cast members from the highly-anticipated film The Eternals to the stage: Richard Madden, who portrays the all-powerful Ikaris; Kumail Nanjiani, who plays cosmic-powered Kingo; Lauren Ridloff, who portrays the super-fast Makkari, the first deaf hero in the MCU; Brian Tyree Henry, who plays the intelligent inventor Phastos; Salma Hayek, who plays the wise and spiritual leader Ajak; Lia McHugh, who portrays the eternally young, old-soul Sprite; Don Lee, who plays the powerful Gilgamesh; and Angelina Jolie, who stars as the fierce warrior Thena. The actors stood in front of concept art images of their characters and three new cast members were also announced: Gemma Chan, who plays humankind-loving Sersi; Kit Harington, who was cast as non-Eternal Dane Whitman, and Barry Keoghan, who portrays aloof loner Druig, and was on hand for the event. Directed by Chloé Zhao, The Eternals opens on November 6, 2020.
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