The Star Wars franchise is notorious for keeping plot details secret, but according to director J.J. Abrams, a real Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker script ended up on eBay long before the movie was set to be released. On Monday, Nov. 25, Abrams discussed the upcoming Star Wars film on Good Morning America, and revealed how an elaborate mishap led to a real script for the film ending up on the e-commerce site. But don't worry, no spoilers were leaked in the end.
Disney and Lucasfilm take serious precautions to keep movies spoiler-free, including being personalized and printed on non-copiable paper. Given these measures, it's hard to believe a whole script could be leaked, and yet, that's exactly what happened. Abrams told GMA that one of the actors left the script under a bed after filming, and "it was found by someone who was cleaning their place." He added, "It was then given to someone else who went to sell it on eBay." Abrams wouldn't reveal who made the mistake, saying, "I want to, but I won’t," and assured fans the production company, "got it back before it sold."
Star Wars scripts are kept under a well-documented security protocol. In Dec. of 2018, Mark Hamill discussed the Episode 9's security practices in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, saying, "It’s like working for some secret deep state government organization, like being in the CIA." The actor revealed the script arrived on, "dark red paper that gives you a headache to read." The paper, which was used for The Force Awakens as well, makes it impossible to photocopy or photograph because the pages will appear black, as per EW.
Hamill isn't the first actor to talk about the secrecy around scripts and plot details. In January, Richard E. Grant claimed that scripts on the Star Wars set were guarded. Speaking on The One Show, he said, "You have to go to a room where there are bodyguards outside, closed-circuit television cameras, and it's printed on crimson pages so you can't photograph it." Star Wars actors reportedly have to learn lines on the day of filming and sign pages out, and security guards are also on set.
Back in Dec. of 2015, Adam Driver discussed keeping Star Wars secrets on Late Night With Seth Meyers, revealing his script was kept in a locked pouch. Driver wouldn't travel with the script, and said, "I would just open it in my room, unlock it, unzip it, and read it. It was very intense."
Disney also keeps trailers for Star Wars out of the spotlight, and unlike other major theatrical releases, chose to debut the Rise of Skywalker trailer just a few months before the premiere date. On Monday, Good Morning America aired an additional clip, which showed Finn, Rey, and Poe being chased by flying stormtroopers.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker will be released on Dec. 20, and will bring back many of the core cast, including Adam Driver as Kylo Ren, Kelly Marie Tran as Rose, Daisy Ridley as Rey, John Boyega as Finn, and Oscar Isaac as Poe. Mark Hamill will reprise his role as Luke Skywalker, and Carrie Fisher will appear posthumously as Princess Leia Organa. The fate of the characters in the final installment is unclear, and unlike those two people who found the script under a bed, fans will have to wait until December to find out.