Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker visual effects supervisor Roger Guyett says there were no plans to have Anakin Skywalker and Ben Solo Force ghosts appear. In the film’s final scene, Rey visits the Lars homestead on Tatooine, burying Luke and Leia’s lightsabers together in the sand. When asked by a passerby what her name is, Rey sees the spirits of her old teachers and introduces herself as Rey Skywalker, symbolically rejecting her blood heritage as a Palpatine as she assumes a new identity. Some viewers considered this a powerful moment (and a fitting note to end the Skywalker saga on), but others were confused Luke and Leia were the only two Force ghosts to appear.

Rise of Skywalker co-writer Chris Terrio explained the decision by saying it was meant to underscore the relationships Rey cultivated with the Skywalker twins over the course of the sequel trilogy. Since Luke and Leia trained Rey (and were a key part of her story), the creative team felt it was more impactful for Rey to just see them, rather than a plethora of old Jedi from the series. Still, fans were holding out hope Anakin or Ben would pop up in that last scene to help close the book on the story. While it’s something that would have pleased viewers, it was never in the cards.

In an interview with Yahoo, Guyett stated they never made a Ben Solo Force ghost for The Rise of Skywalker. As for Anakin, it sounds like director J.J. Abrams and company only planned for Hayden Christensen to reprise his prequel role in a voice over cameo during a big moment in Rey’s final battle against Emperor Palpatine. Discussing that bit in the film, Guyett said it “was a really fabulous moment.”

It’s a little disappointing Ben’s Force ghost was never even designed, indicating it wasn’t seriously considered for The Rise of Skywalker. An argument can be made Kylo/Ben was just as important to Rey’s journey as Luke and Leia; their rare Force dyad was an instrumental component of the sequel trilogy and allowed the two to form a strong bond with one another. Narratively, it would have made sense for Ben to appear alongside his mother and uncle on Tatooine, giving his dynamic with Rey an extra dose of closure. In the case of Anakin, Guyett’s comments serve as proof unverifiable claims about a mythical “Abrams Cut” of The Rise of Skywalker (which allegedly included Christensen onscreen as Anakin) are unfounded. That isn’t the most surprising development, but it’s still good to know there (probably) isn’t unseen footage of Christensen buried in the vaults.

With the Skywalker saga now complete, Lucasfilm is said to be developing projects set in the High Republic era (some 400 years before The Phantom Menace) as they figure out the Star Wars franchise’s next course. That all but eliminates the possibility of Ben or Anakin showing up in a future movie, but Kathleen Kennedy’s said the studio isn’t going to abandon the fan-favorite characters created for the sequels. Maybe Ben will appear in a novel or comic book set after The Rise of Skywalker, coming to Rey during a time of need (as Force ghosts are wont to do). There are other ways Lucasfilm can continue the Skywalker legacy, even if the family’s time on the big screen is over.

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Source: Yahoo