From A New Hope and all the way to The Rise of Skywalker, Star Wars has been famous for incorporating some of the best Easter Eggs in its movies for over 40 years.
Among and in between those lightsaber blasts, flying spaceships, and Chewie’s cries, were a bunch of super-cool, reminiscent references and hidden nods that only dedicated fans would have spotted. If you were too engrossed in all the action and drama and happened to miss the secret shout-outs and cameos in Episode IX, fear no more as we’ve listed the 15 best Rise of Skywalker Easter Eggs…
1. Palpatine’s Line
Devoted fans would have heard one of Palpatine’s lines somewhere before. A specific quote mentioned by the Emperor to Kylo Ren in The Rise of Skywalker was in fact uttered to Darth Vader in Revenge of the Sith. “The Dark Side of the Force is a pathway to many abilities some consider to be unnatural” was repeated word for word in the latest Star Wars instalment.
2. Chewbacca and Dejarik
As in A New Hope and The Force Awakens, Chewie is seen playing a game of Dejarik (or Holochess, as some call it) on the Millennium Falcon. It’s a running gag that the Wookie is pretty bad at the game, and in The Rise of Skywalker, Poe and Finn suggest he’s cheating. Oh, his age is confirmed, too. Chewbacca’s apparently 250 years old!
3. Kylo Ren’s Force Choke
Kylo Ren really has followed in his grandfather’s footsteps! In Episode IX, we see the villain choke his First Order commander after he rudely replies to him. Well, this is very much reminiscent of the moment in A New Hope when Darth Vader Force choked Admiral Motti.
4. 42 Years
Apparently, the Aki-Aki desert festival takes place every 42 years. If you’re good with numbers and claim yourself a die-hard Star Wars fan, you’d have noticed that 42 years ago is when the very first movie from the saga was released. Indeed, A New Hope came out in 1977.
5. “I’ve Got a Bad Feeling about This”
The famous line usually quoted by none other than Han Solo (as seen in every Star Wars movie) was this time around uttered by Lando when he attempts to hide Rey and gang from TIE Fighters on Pasana. Another sneaky Easter Egg thrown in during Lando’s scene? The smuggler is in disguise – just as he was in Return of the Jedi.
6. “I Know”
Yet another one of Han Solo’s famous lines is repeated in The Rise of Skywalker when the legendary smuggler makes a cameo and meets his apologetic son. When Kylo Ren utters “Dad…”, but struggles to get the words out, Solo replies to his son with the words, “I know”, just as he did to Princess Leia in The Empire Strikes Back when she told him she loved him.
7. A Lightsaber Deserves more Respect
There have been no truer words spoken by none other than Luke Skywalker. When Rey throws his lightsaber into the ocean during this particular movie, the Star Wars legend catches it and says “a Jedi’s weapon deserves more respect”. This is a direct reference to the moment in The Last Jedi when Luke tossed his lightsaber behind him – an action many fans agreed was very out of character.
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8. Luke’s X-Wing
Luke levitating his old X-Wing from the waters may have been no big deal to new fans of the saga, but old fans were pretty ecstatic about this particular scene. This was exactly what Master Yoda done in The Empire Strikes Back. In fact, the same music from that very scene plays during The Rise of Skywalker scene, too!
9. Rey and the Two Suns
Rey decides to join the Skywalker family by officially adopting the iconic surname. Not only does she take Luke’s name and carry on his Jedi legacy, she also mimics one of his most iconic Star Wars scenes. Rey and BB-8 walking towards the two suns replicates the same way Luke did in A New Hope.
10. A Line from The Force Awakens
Fans will recall one of Kylo Ren’s lines during The Rise of Skywalker from The Force Awakens. Remember when he sees a memory of his father? When he’s about to throw his lightsaber into the ocean, Kylo tells Han Solo, “I know what I have to do but I don’t know if I have the strength to do it”. This is the very same line he used in Episode VII just before murdering his father.
11. Jedi Voices
Just when we thought Palpatine had defeated Rey, she hears a range of Jedi voices which give her the strength and power to regain her Jedi skills. Wondering who all those voices belonged to? According to the film’s credits, there were 10 “voices of Jedi past,”. These included:
- Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen)
- Luminara Unduli (Olivia d’Abo)
- Ahsoka Tano (Ashley Eckstein)
- Aayla Secura (Jennifer Hale)
- Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson)
- Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor and Alec Guinness)
- Yoda (Frank Oz)
- Adi Gallia (Angelique Perrin)
- Kana Jarrus (Freddie Prinze Jr.)
- Qui-Gon Jinn (Liam Neeson)
12. Chewbacca Gets a Medal
It’s about time! Chewbacca finally received a medal in this movie, after 42 long years. When the Wookie didn’t receive it alongside his mates in A New Hope, fans went crazy. There were theories that he already had one, so therefore didn’t need to receive it again, and even George Lucas explained that “Medals don’t really mean much to Wookiees”. Finally, in Episode IX, we see Maz Katana hand Chewie his long-awaited medal, and boy did he seem proud to receive it!
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13. The Voice of D-0
The brand new droid introduced in The Rise of Skywalker has a little more importance than just helping the Resistance take on the First Order. A fun Star Wars fact – he was voiced by none other than J.J. Abrams – the movie’s very own director! Apparently, his voice was used temporarily until they found another actor, but the crew ended up keeping the director’s sound effects in the end!
14. Dark Side Rey
In the midst of all the madness, Rey envisioned her “future self” turning to the Dark Side. Dark Side Rey bore a double-bladed lightsaber, looked hauntingly thin, and had some pretty crooked teeth. Despite how frightening this scene was, it was also a callback to Luke’s scene in The Empire Strikes Back when he sees himself fighting as Vader.
15. Wedge Antilles Returns
That’s right! Luke Skywalker’s friend and fellow X-Wing pilot, Wedge Antilles makes an epic comeback in Episode IX during the final battle, long after we last saw him in the original trilogy. It’s always fun seeing old faces!
It will be a while until we get another blockbuster from the Galaxy far, far away, so take in all these Easter Eggs in The Rise of Skywalker whilst you can! What hidden teasers and references were your favorite? Did we miss any others? Let us know in the comments!
Wondering what order to watch the saga in? Check out our in-depth explanation of the Star Wars movie timeline for the ultimate marathon!