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Monday 16 September 2019

Disney teases new details for Star Wars, Black Panther 2 and The Eternals

The company unveiled a string of new projects at its D23 convention.

Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker wowed fans at D23 (Yui Mok/PA)
Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker wowed fans at D23 (Yui Mok/PA)

By Keiran Southern, PA Los Angeles Correspondent

Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker wowed fans as Disney unveiled new footage from the final film in the original saga.

Director JJ Abrams appeared on stage in front of an estimated 7,000 fans inside Hall E at Anaheim Convention Centre for the second day of Disney’s biennial fan convention, D23.

He was joined by the cast of Rise Of Skywalker, which is billed as bringing the curtain down on the nine-part saga that began with 1977’s Star Wars.

Abrams said they were not ready to share a new trailer and instead presented fans with a sizzle reel of the film.

It featured Daisy Ridley’s Rey fighting Adam Driver’s Kylo Ren in the middle of the ocean and ended with Rey wielding a double lightsaber.

Abrams also paid tribute to Carrie Fisher, the actress who played Princess Leia before her death in 2016.

He revealed she will appear one last time, using footage shot from 2015’s The Force Awakens.

Later, the rumours that Kit Harington is joining the Marvel Cinematic Universe were confirmed. The British actor will join his former Game Of Thrones co-star Richard Madden in The Eternals.

Harington will be playing Dane Whitman, also known as Black Knight.

Angelina Jolie will also star, alongside Kumail Nanjiani, Lauren Ridloff, Brian Tyree Henry, Salma Hayek, Lia McHugh and Don Lee.

The Eternals are a group of superheroes who made their first appearance in Marvel comics in 1976 and were created by revered artist Jack Kirby.

The Marvel Studios segment was presented by super producer Kevin Feige, who introduced Black Panther director Ryan Coogler to announce the sequel’s release date.

Black Panther 2 will arrive on May 2 2022, Coogler said. He added: “We’re really hard at work trying to give you guys something special. We really want it to be special.”

Disney presented its upcoming live-action adaption of Mulan without its star, Liu Yifei, also known as Crystal Liu.

The Chinese-American actress sparked controversy after voicing her support for Hong Kong police in their clashes with pro-democracy demonstrators.

In Liu’s absence, director Niki Caro appeared to introduce a clip of the film, showing Mulan, a female who pretends to be a man so she can fight in a war, failing to convince a prospective mother-in-law she is marriage material.

“It’s the timeless story we love, but in live action it’s real,” Caro said. And British actor Tom Holland made an appearance on stage, days after the corporate row between Sony and Disney over Spider-Man.

Holland, who will likely leave the MCU after Sony and Disney failed to reach an agreement on future films, said: “It’s been a crazy week.”

And referencing a famous phrase from the Avengers movies, Holland added: “I want you to know I am grateful from the bottom of my heart and I love you 3,000.”

He was at D23 to talk about Disney and Pixar’s Onward, an animated film about two teenage elf brothers also starring Chris Pratt.

Other projects teased by Disney include Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, Soul, an animated film starring Jamie Foxx and Raya And The Last Dragon.

PA Media

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