At long last! We get a first official look at Kelly Marie Tran in Star Wars: The Last Jedi!
On Friday, at this year's Star Wars Celebration gathering in Orlando, fans met Ms. Tran along with the rest of the Last Jedi stars and got some basic details about the newcomer's character in the highly-anticipated next installment of the Star Wars saga -- and she apparently has the "biggest new part" in Episode VIII.
The Last Jedi: Meet Kelly Marie Tran's new Star Wars character, Rose
"My character's name is Rose," Tran revealed during Friday's Last Jedi panel. "She's part of the Resistance, and she works in maintenance. I can't wait for you to meet her."
Details are scant, but the cast's comments indicate that Rose and John Boyega's Finn would be paired up in this film. When we last saw Finn at the end of The Force Awakens, he had suffered a serious lightsaber injury.
Director Rian Johnson described Rose as a kind of everywoman, comparing her to Luke Skywalker and the franchise's tradition of young, reluctant nobodies who find themselves drawn into an extraordinary adventure.
"This possibility that any of us could step up and become a hero, that's where Rose comes from," Johnson said during the Last Jedi panel. "She's not a soldier. She's not looking to be a hero, but she gets pulled into a very big adventures with Finn."
Tran also received high praise from Lucasfilm president and Last Jedi executive producer Kathleen Kennedy.
"She is extremely comfortable at such a young age stepping into this very confident and excited at the same time," Kennedy said. "There's a vulnerability to Kelly. She's very genuine and there's an authenticity to her character. She's going to be very fun to watch."
A native of San Diego, Tran is a UCLA grad and veteran of the improv comedy troupe Upright Citizens Brigade. Her credits include appearances in shorts for CollegeHumor and small TV roles in About a Boy, Comedy Bang! Bang! and Jimmy Kimmel Live. But her Star Wars role is clearly the biggest thing she's ever done.
Tran says she had to keep her role in The Last Jedi a secret from everyone she knew, including her parents.
"I told them I was doing an indie movie in Canada."
Some indie! That's going to be one hell of a feature film debut. I cannot wait to see her kick some galactic ass and get all action figure-ized. Alas, she did not make it into the first teaser trailer for The Last Jedi:
I guess we'll have to wait until Star Wars: The Last Jedi opens in theaters on December 15.