'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' Images Reveal Keri Russell And Richard E. Grant's New Characters

It was only a few weeks ago we had the first teaser for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, and it did not let us down. But that was just the beginning of Lucasfilm's marketing campaign, and with seven months to go it kicks into another gear as new images and story details have been revealed by Vanity Fair.

The gorgeous images arrive from famed photographer Annie Liebovitz, who offers our first look at new characters played by Richard E. Grant and Keri Russell. That's right, "new", so you can shut down those rumors of Grant playing Grand Admiral Thrawn. Instead, he's playing Allegiant General Pryde, who looks like an even bigger Imperial dickhead than Domhnall Gleeson's General Hux. Russell plays Zorri Bliss, which may be the coolest name in the galaxy outside of Lando Calrissian, who is also pictured alongside Chewbacca, BB-8, and Oscar Isaac as Poe Dameron.

Director J.J. Abrams has an incredible weight on his shoulders to not just tell a good single story, but to wrap up one of the greatest, most meaningful storylines in movie history. He's aware of the responsbility...

 “That’s the challenge of this movie,” Abrams said. “It wasn’t just to make one film that as a stand-alone experience would be thrilling, and scary, and emotional, and funny, but one that if you were to watch all nine of the films, you’d feel like, Well, of course—that!”

 “It felt slightly more renegade; it felt slightly more like, you know, ‘Fuck it, I’m going to do the thing that feels right because it does, not because it adheres to something.’”

We can also confirm that Mark Hamill will return as Luke Skywalker, which we all kinda knew even though the actor continues to bellyache about the Jedi Master's fate. The Knights of Ren are also back, and look even more like elite samurai warriors than ever.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker opens December 20th.