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‘Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker’ sees return of emperor Palpatine

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'Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker' sees return of emperor Palpatine

CHICAGO (Reuters) – The ninth film in the original “Star Wars” saga will be called “The Rise of Skywalker,” and will feature the return of the evil emperor Palpatine to threaten the young heroine Rey and the Resistance, Walt Disney Co revealed on Friday.

FILE PHOTO: Characters of Star Wars take part in an event held for the release of the film “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” in Disneyland Paris in Marne-la-Vallee, France, December 17, 2015. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Disney showed fans attending the “Star Wars Celebration” convention in Chicago the first footage from the movie, which will be released in theaters in December and will conclude the story that began in 1977.

A villainous cackle was heard at the end of the trailer, and the actor who played Palpatine in previous films, Ian McDiarmid, walked onstage to loud applause from an audience of roughly 10,000 fans, many waving colorful lightsabers.

As of Friday afternoon, the “Rise of Skywalker” trailer had been viewed online about 11 million times.

Director J.J. Abrams, speaking alongside a handful of cast members, said the movie takes place some time after the events of the 2017 film “The Last Jedi.”

The footage showed a hug between Princess Leia, played by the late Carrie Fisher, and Rey (Daisy Ridley). Fisher died in 2016, but Abrams said that in a “weird miracle,” he was able to piece together unused footage from “Last Jedi” to continue the beloved character’s story.

“Princess Leia lives in this film in a way that’s mind-blowing for me,” he said.

The director disclosed little about the plot, however.

“This movie is about this new generation, what they’ve inherited, the light and the dark, and are they ready?” he told the crowd.

In an interview, Abrams told Reuters that writers met with “Star Wars” creator George Lucas before they started to script the final chapter in one of the world’s most-celebrated movie franchises.

The goal was “to create something that gives a sense of surprise and thrill and heartbreak, and shock and awe, but also feeling like an inevitability,” he said.

The circumstances surrounding Palpatine’s return remain a mystery. The character appeared to die in 1983’s “Return of the Jedi.” In the trailer released on Friday, the voice of Luke (Mark Hamill) says to Rey that “no one’s ever really gone.”

Luke also tells Rey that “we have passed on all the knowledge,” and that the fight against evil is now hers.

Ridley, John Boyega, who plays Resistance fighter Finn and Oscar Isaac, who portrays pilot Poe Dameron, all attended the event.

But the largest ovations came for Kelly Marie Tran, who plays mechanic Rose Tico, and Billy Dee Williams, who returns to the series as con artist Lando Calrissian after last playing the character in 1983.

“Lando never really left me,” Williams said.

Naomi Ackie, who joined as a new character named Jannah, said she could not confirm or deny speculation that Jannah was Calrissian’s daughter.

A new droid, D-O, also rolled onto the stage, joining BB-8 and R2-D2.

Fans were delighted.

“I got chills. I was pretty emotional from the panel leading into it and then when the trailer kicked off I was just so thrilled. I just can’t wait,” said Jon Barnes.

Reporting by Bob Chiarito and Rollo Ross in Chicago; additional reporting by Lisa Richwine in Los Angeles; editing by David Gregorio, Nick Zieminski and G Crosse

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Charlize Theron channels ‘Game of Thrones’ character Sansa Stark

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Charlize Theron channels 'Game of Thrones' character Sansa Stark

Charlize Theron channeled her inner Sansa Stark in her latest red carpet look.

The actress donned a black pleated dress with sheer sleeves and a leather bodice at the Paris premiere for her new movie “Long Shot” on Wednesday.

CHARLIZE THERON SAYS SHE’S ‘SHOCKINGLY’ SINGLE: ‘SOMEBODY JUST NEEDS TO GROW A PAIR AND STEP UP’

Actress Charlize Theron attends the "Long Shot" Premiere At Gaumont Opera Capucines on April 24, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Marc Piasecki/WireImage)

Actress Charlize Theron attends the “Long Shot” Premiere At Gaumont Opera Capucines on April 24, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Marc Piasecki/WireImage)

The black getup was very similar to Sansa Stark’s new look in Season 8 of “Game of Thrones.” Sansa is played by British actress Sophie Turner.

Sophie Turner as Sansa Stark in "Game of Thrones," left, and actress Charlize Theron.

Sophie Turner as Sansa Stark in “Game of Thrones,” left, and actress Charlize Theron.
(HBO/Getty)

[WARNING: THE FOLLOWING CONTAINS SPOILERS FROM SEASON 8 OF “GAME OF THRONES”]

‘GAME OF THRONES’ STAR MAISIE WILLIAMS OPENS UP ABOUT SEX SCENE THAT SHOCKED VIEWERS

Turner made headlines herself earlier this week when she shared a raunchy response to the shocking Arya and Gendry sex scene from Season 8, Episode 2.

Turner took to her Instagram Stories on Sunday to react to the scene involving the characters played by Maisie Williams, 22, and Joe Dempsie, 31, that took many viewers by surprise and left some cringing. In Sunday night’s episode, 18-year-old Arya Stark lost her virginity to Gendry, her former travel partner who is the bastard son of late King Robert Baratheon.

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“In honor of Easter, I guess ‘Game of Thrones’ wanted the storyline to have a little Easter Bunny hop, hop, hoppin’ into that p—y, and that’s the tea,” Turner said in a video posted on her Instagram Stories.

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Bella Thorne sends hearts racing with sexy bikini snap after Mod Sun split

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Bella Thorne sends hearts racing with sexy bikini snap after Mod Sun split

Bella Thorne is showing her ex what he’s missing.

The former Disney child star posed for a series of sexy snaps on Instagram just days after announcing she had split from rapper Mod Sun.

“Not that chick that wears makeup in the pool,” Thorne captioned the sultry photo in which she dons a barely there black bikini as she exits a pool.

BELLA THORNE GETS CANDID ABOUT BISEXUALITY, OPEN RELATIONSHIPS WITH MOD SUN AND TANA MONGEAU

She wore the same bathing suit days earlier while posing yet again poolside. “It’s hot help me,” she wrote.

Thorne, 21, announced last week that she and the 32-year-old rapper had parted ways after dating for more than a year.

BELLA THORNE POSES NAKED IN WHIPPED CREAM TO PROMOTE MAKEUP LINE

“I  will always love you. All good things must come to an end,” the actress wrote on Instagram. She punctuated the snap with a broken heart emoji.

BELLA THORNE POSES NUDE WITH NO RETOUCHING

The breakup comes two months after Thorne announced she and girlfriend Tana Mongeau — who she dated concurrently with Mod Sun — split.

“Tana and I aren’t together anymore, pls stop asking. We love U guys,” Thorne tweeted in February.

Mongeau, 20, tweeted at the time, “i love her forever don’t get that twisted. she changed my life forever. don’t rly wanna talk on it.”

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In January, Thorne said of her relationships with Mongeau and Mod Sun, “I don’t think anybody will really understand the bonds that I share with Mod or Tana … Yeah, we joke around about poly, but we aren’t in the sense that we don’t put a word, a box or label too many things. It is what it is.”

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Chris Pratt reveals he’s ‘so thrilled’ to work with re-hired James Gunn on ‘Guardians of the Galaxy 3’

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Chris Pratt reveals he's 'so thrilled' to work with re-hired James Gunn on 'Guardians of the Galaxy 3'

Avengers: Endgame” star Chris Pratt is thrilled that he will work with writer and director James Gunn on the third “Guardians of the Galaxy” movie.

Gunn was fired by Disney in July 2018 after decade-old tweets resurfaced in which he joked about topics like pedophilia and rape. Walt Disney Studios Chairman Alan Horn told Fox News at the time that the studio had “severed our business relationship” with Gunn. However, the studio reversed that decision in March.

“I was so thrilled, so excited. I think it’s the right move, I really stand behind it,” Pratt, 39, told People. “I’m really proud of Disney for hiring James back and ultimately thrilled for not only us, but also for the fans. I think it’s going to wrap up the trilogy in the best way.”

SCARLETT JOHANSSON SIZZLES IN SILVER AT ‘AVENGERS’ PREMIERE WITH BOYFRIEND COLIN JOST

He continued, “And Guardians of the Galaxy are really all about second chances and giving people an opportunity to be their best. We’re a ragtag squad of people coming together and having each other’s back. I think it really worked out the way it was supposed to, and I feel good about it.”

Pratt was among the eight cast members to share a note with Disney urging it to rehire Gunn in the wake of his controversy. At the time, Gunn had already apologized for his past comments noting that, early on in his career, he tried to be provocative with his comedy and regretted it.

Chris Pratt revealed that he's thrilled to work with director James Gunn again on 'Guardians of the Galaxy 3.'

Chris Pratt revealed that he’s thrilled to work with director James Gunn again on ‘Guardians of the Galaxy 3.’
(Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

“My words of nearly a decade ago were, at the time, totally failed and unfortunate efforts to be provocative,” Gunn wrote at the time. “I have regretted them for many years since — not just because they were stupid, not at all funny, wildly insensitive, and certainly not provocative like I had hoped, but also because they don’t reflect the person I am today or have been for some time.”

MARK RUFFALO WAS ASTONISHED TO LEARN THIS FACT ABOUT HIS ‘AVENGERS: ENDGAME’ CO-STAR BRIE LARSON

Disney announced that not only would it work with Gunn again, but it will use his script for “Guardians of the Galaxy 3” as well as reinstate him as director.

“I am tremendously grateful to every person out there who has supported me over the past few months. I am always learning and will continue to work at being the best human being I can be,” Gunn wrote following his reinstatement. “I deeply appreciate Disney’s decision and I am excited to continue making films that investigate the ties of love that bind us all. I have been and continue to be incredibly humbled by your love and support. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. Love to you all.”

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Before his third adventure with the Guardians, Pratt is expected to appear again in “Avengers: Endgame,” which hits theaters April 26. Meanwhile, Gunn will helm the sequel to “Suicide Squad” for DC and Warner Bros.

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