In Star Wars lore, a Jedi Knight’s lightsaber plays an important role in their journey. Luke builds a new green lightsaber by the time we see him in Return of the Jedi, you know, after he lost the other one in Empire Strikes Back. Leia Organa had her own lightsaber during her training with Luke, but she gave it to him for safe keeping. And Rey eventually used Leia’s lightsaber to defeat Emperor Palpatine, but what about Rey’s own lightsaber?
As you may recall, in The Rise of Skywalker, we only get to see Rey’s lightsaber in the very last scene, during which she activates it near Luke’s old farm home on Tatooine. Revealing this new lightsaber at the tail end of her journey did seem a bit odd. But, apparently, it had a much larger part to play in The Rise of Skywalker, according to Lucasfilm art director Phil Szostak. Here’s what he had to say on social media:
"The lightsaber was going to be in more than just one shot at the end. There was going to be a subplot throughout the film showing Rey working on it at her bench, using the Jedi texts as a guide."
I think it would have been interesting to intersect this subplot with Rey’s own journey toward defeating Emperor Palpatine. Honestly, revealing her lightsaber at the end doesn’t hold as much weight otherwise.
The importance of lightsabers is a concept that was featured heavily in The Force Awakens, The Last Jedi, and The Rise of Skywalker. In The Force Awakens, Luke’s lightsaber almost takes on a life of its own, as it even calls to Rey. It's also eventually used by both Finn and Rey to defeat Kylo Ren before the former takes it to Luke Skywalker himself, who would then chuck it over his should in The Last Jedi.
When it comes to the Dark Side, Kylo Ren wields a red lightsaber with a cross guard, a feature that certainly had the internet going crazy at the time. The cross guard, according to J.J. Abrams, was to symbolize Kylo Ren's position as a powerful and dark knight (not of the Batman variety).
We also get a little taste of what Rey’s Sith lightsaber would have looked like in The Rise of Skywalker. During her vision, she faces off with her darker self who uses a lightsaber that folds. Apparently, this lightsaber was influenced by Darth Vader’s own weapon.
With Rey revealing her new yellow lightsaber at the end of The Rise of Skywalker, it’s almost as if J.J. Abrams and the producers were trying to set up a new series following her journey as a Jedi Knight. But there hasn’t any indication that’s actually going to happen, with Daisy Ridley denying she’s involved in any future projects. Where Star Wars goes from here is anyone's guess, but as always we'll be sure to keep you updated on the latest. You can also stream Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker now on Disney+.