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A new ‘Star Wars Episode IX’ fan theory suggests surprising final lightsaber duel (potential spoilers)

SHARE A new ‘Star Wars Episode IX’ fan theory suggests surprising final lightsaber duel (potential spoilers)
Actor Matt Smith attends a special screening of "Mapplethorpe," hosted by The Cinema Society, at Cinepolis Chelsea on Thursday, Feb. 14, 2019, in New York.

Actor Matt Smith attends a special screening of “Mapplethorpe,” hosted by The Cinema Society, at Cinepolis Chelsea on Thursday, Feb. 14, 2019, in New York.

Evan Agostini, Invision/Associated Press

Warning: This article may contain potential spoilers for “Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker.”

Like, “climactic final battle” spoilers.

Still here? OK, here we go.

SALT LAKE CITY — A new fan theory that has made headlines across pop culture websites indicates that “Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker” could involve a final battle featuring Rey (Daisy Ridley), Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) and Matt Smith — who may or may not actually be in the film.

According to Comic Book, the fan site Making Star Wars claims Smith (“Doctor Who”, “The Crown”) is indeed in the film as a follower of Emperor Palpatine, who was killed by Darth Vader in “Return of the Jedi.”

Comic Book also discusses what could happen in the climactic final battle. Smith’s character is rumored to be possessed by Palpatine’s spirit, leading to an “intense” battle between Rey and Kylo Ren, who will apparently begin calling himself Ben Solo again.

Some specific details:

  • Kylo Ren will deal a fatal blow to Smith’s character, which will allow Palpatine to possess him.
  • Instead, Kylo Ren will retain enough control to sacrifice himself.
  • Because Rey is a follower of the light side of the force, Palpatine won’t have a body “evil enough to inhabit.”
  • A previous theory says Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis) may have served as Palpatine’s host body before transferring the spirit elsewhere.

Palpatine (played by Ian McDiarmid) has already been confirmed to be a presence in the film, according to the Deseret News. The first teaser trailer for “The Rise of Skywalker” ends with a look at a ruined piece of the Death Star and the evil emperor’s iconic laugh. According to SlashFilm, Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy has said the villain was always planned to return for the final film in the new trilogy.

But still, maybe take rumors and theories with a grain of salt. This is all speculation until the new film arrives.

"Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker" hits theaters Dec. 20.