As we head into December, the question on every Star Wars fan’s mind looms. Will Rise of Skywalker close out the iconic 40-year saga in a satisfying way? It’s a tricky business to deliver a conclusion to a franchise such as this and it’ll be heavy on the shoulders of co-writer/director J.J. Abrams. Yet, the Force Awakens helmer seems confident in what is to come with Episode IX and admits he feels “infinitely better” on his second go-around. In Abrams’ words:

Remember, just a few years ago J.J. Abrams had the so-called impossible task to relaunch the Star Wars franchise after 10 years away from the silver screen. He was starting from scratch with quite a few unknown actors playing new characters at the center of the continuation of the famed Skywalker Saga. And as Abrams explains to EW, there were a lot more adjustments made to Force Awakens story then for Rise of Skywalker. There were a lot of question marks about what would work and what wouldn’t.

So compared to that nerve racking experience, preparing for the world to see Rise of Skywalker is less pressure then one might expect. Yet, he does point out the unique challenges of closing out the long-running storyline – such as the movie’s scale being much larger this time around. The cast has only become larger since Force Awakens and the movie will seek to wrap up a number of storylines from Emperor Palpatine to that of The Last Jedi’s Rose Tico.

It’s been a prime time packed with Star Wars content since Abrams brought the franchise back in 2015. This current chapter will close out what some would call an overstuffed approach to the universe in the past few years as Disney will take a big-screen Star Wars hiatus after Rise of Skywalker, coming to theaters on December 20.

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