With the recent confirmation that Mark Hamill’s set to return as Luke Skywalker in next year’s Star Wars: Episode IX, it’s apparent that not even his death can prevent this franchise from prolonging the Jedi master’s story. But while the character seemingly has a future in the series, if only as a well-wishing Force Ghost, large chunks of his past remain a mystery, with that decades-long gap between the events of the original Star Wars trilogy and our current series looking especially underdeveloped.
Granted, the Star Wars Expanded Universe had some stories to tell about Luke’s further adventures after the events of Return of the Jedi. For one thing, these books had our hero marrying a woman named Mara Jade, with the two of them even having a child together. After Disney took over the property, however, such fiction was eradicated from the canon and rebranded as Star Wars Legends, essentially giving the studio a blank canvas on which to create the new movies.
With so much Star Wars-related material on the horizon, it seems inevitable that the franchise will eventually delve further into the lengthy space between Return and The Force Awakens, and in a recent tweet from Hamill, the actor insists that there’s much to be explored in this timespan. Specifically, when asked by a fan why Luke never found love in his lifetime, Hamill suggested that this may not actually be the case.
“Maybe he did between Ep. 6 & 7. Many untold stories there.”
Honestly, it’s kind of creepy to think that the closest that Luke’s ever come to a romantic subplot in these films is his early relationship with Leia before the sibling twist kicked in. And while it could be nice to see him meet somebody, one potential obstacle to telling this story is finding a way to put an age-appropriate Luke on screen.
It’s one thing to cast Alden Ehrenreich as a younger Han Solo than we’ve ever seen before, but to bring in a new actor to play Skywalker in the timespan between two separate Hamill outings would possibly feel a little too jarring. If we throw out that option, then perhaps the only alternative would be de-aging Hamill himself, with results that are likely to prove similarly distracting.
In any case, it’ll probably be a few years before Disney gets round to devoting much runtime to this period in the Star Wars saga, and even then, the galaxy’s certainly big enough for these new stories to avoid Luke altogether. For now, the focus is very much on Episode IX, which will be wrapping up the current trilogy while potentially giving a final send-off to Luke and Leia when the film hits theaters on December 20th, 2019.