LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — It's the end of a decades-long space odyssey, and fans around the Bluegrass have purchased their tickets for the final chapter in the "Star Wars" film franchise.
Star Wars Episode IX, titled "The Rise of Skywalker" is expected to break box office records. It brings to an end the main saga of the film that kicked off with the original films in the late 1970s and early 80s. Here's the new film's trailer, in case you missed it.
Locally, fans have already purchased their tickets to early showings, most of which begin around 6 p.m. For many, this is a tradition that has been a part of their lives since they were children.
Gary Green and his cousins have purchased tickets to Thursday's showing.
"Star Wars has been, and always will be, a way to both connect and escape," Green explained to LEX 18. "It has been passed down from generation to generation, weaving at least one common thread between each. "
Green's cousin Shawn Reynolds also explained that it's a good way for the family to spend time together and that the two will head out to eat after the film at the Waffle House to "unpack what they see."
Green, a Lexington resident, waxed a little more philosophically about the end of the saga. Despite the end of the series, Green thinks "The Force" will live on in fans.
"Parents, grandparents, children ... all on the adventure together. In the end, maybe that’s what The Force really is," Green explains.
"To me, it’s a story of hope and love in the face of despair," added another local, Jordan Elizabeth Brennan. "Star Wars has always been a constant to me. I grew up with Star Wars."
She says she has developed multiple close friendships in the series fandom.
Local businesses and organizations are also having fun with the unofficial "Star Wars Day."
The City of Lexington participated in the fun by citing an ordinance to keep kids from purchasing a "Death Star."
Kentucky for Kentucky also dipped its toes into the original trilogy, producing a Kentucky-themed shirt featuring the saga's most infamous villain.
Fans of the original may mourn the end of the film franchise, but they may find solace in George Lucas' extended universe. Fans of the Disney+ show "The Mandalorian" are already in love with the show's "Baby Yoda." (Editor's Note: Please do not send angry messages. I know that the creature is NOT Yoda and that he is known only as "The Child.")
If you're a fan, before the movie starts, you can swing by Lexington restaurant Chuy's, where they are offering a "Baby Yoda"-style margarita. Most shows are sold out this evening, but you can check for available tickets here.