Disney+ may now offer up all of the old Star Wars films, but the final film of the Skywalker Saga is still on its way to theaters later this year. The Rise of Skywalker has led to record-breaking fan anticipation and will likely lead to record-breaking tears wept by fans who’ve followed the story of a galaxy far, far away since its debut in 1977. And those tears won’t be exclusive to fans, either. The cast who’ve played these iconic characters across the franchise will also be saying goodbye. One of the most heartfelt farewells so far has been between Luke Skywalker portrayer Mark Hamill and C-3PO himself, Anthony Daniels.
Daniels, writing in his memoir I Am C-3PO: The Inside Story, published an email from Hamill after the iconic Skywalker wrapped production on Episode IX:
“Thanks for the more than kind words, Tony. I grew so fond of our fictional relationship; it was hard to be separated in this new trilogy," Hamill wrote. "You & R2 were my family & they certainly didn’t dare to take Chewie away from Han. I was appalled that in the original script for VIII, I just walked by without even acknowledging you! I was grateful that Rian let us at least have that brief farewell moment, even if it was only a nod & a wink. Perhaps it was fitting, as there are no words to convey the depth of Luke’s gratitude to his faithful sidekick, just as there are no words to express mine to you." The actor capped off with a lovely closing: "Thank you for a lifetime of fond memories, friend.”
Those aren’t tears, it’s just a coolant leak. Definitely just coolant. The correspondence followed up a brief goodbye between the pair, who have been working together since the first film in the franchise, and was called “the most touching message I and Threepio ever had,” by Daniels. The email is dated Dec. 19 of 2018, making Hamill’s final day on set about a month before Daniels would wrap — hinting that the droid has a larger role to play in this closing chapter.
The J.J. Abrams-directed The Rise of Skywalker will end the Skywalker Saga on Dec. 20.