Is Luke Rey’s Father? 4 Prop Bets for The Last Jedi
On December 15, the eighth installment in the Star Wars saga will hit theaters when Star Wars: The Last Jedi is officially released. George Lucas’ infamous film franchise was resurrected several years ago when Disney agreed to purchase the rights to all things Star Wars for the tidy sum of $4 billion.
Since then, Disney has already released a pair of new films with several more already in the works. The Force Awakens smashed a number of box office records when it was released back in 2015, and 2016’s spin-off Rogue One became the third movie in the franchise to gross over $1 billion worldwide. It sure sounds as though Lucas may have sold a little low.
Considering many fans thought of Awakens as the film that returned the series to its glory days, anticipation is running incredibly high ahead of The Last Jedi. J.J. Abrams knocked the first one out of the park, and now it falls on Rian Johnson to supply fans with a suitable encore performance.
Bovada is giving bettors the opportunity to get in on some of the fun. The site has a few prop bets listed in anticipation of the film’s release later this year. Let’s run through them and try to figure out where the smart money will go, shall we?
Will Luke Skywalker be Identified as Rey’s Father?
- Yes +250
- No -400
In the final scene of Awakens, we see Rey (and Chewbacca) on a seemingly-deserted island in the middle of freaking nowhere. R2-D2, who had been dormant for the majority of the film, suddenly awakened and revealed to the crew that he holds the map to Luke Skywalker’s location. So, Rey and Chewy hop on the Millennium Falcon and head for Ahch-To, which is the planet on which Luke initially found the Jedi Temple.
The movie ends as we see Rey offering a lightsaber to Luke. The lightsaber, of course, is that of Anakin Skywalker, Luke’s father. We see earlier in the film that Rey is fairly strong with the Force herself despite not really knowing anything about her heritage or back story. A common fan theory, of course, is that Luke is Rey’s father.
Is the title of the eighth film a hint of sorts? Luke is believed to be the last living Jedi, which is also presumably why he’s living on this random island planet alone. However, given Rey’s seemingly inherent ability to channel the Force and wield a lightsaber pretty well, there seems to be some smoke to the theory that she, too, is a Jedi.
We also know that Rey has had dreams and premonitions that feature what appears to be the island planet of Ahch-To, where they found Luke.
It sure sounds like there is some blood connection between Rey and Luke. The question is: will we find out that Luke is Rey’s father in The Last Jedi? Or, will we find out that Luke and Rey are either unrelated or related in some other way? Or, will they wait until the ninth installment of the series to reveal Luke’s status as Rey’s father?
Given the array of possible outcomes, it makes sense that Bovada would slap “no” with heavily-favored odds here. That said, the likelihood that Luke is Rey’s dad seems to be pretty strong at this point. The title of the film may well turn out to be a play on words, of sorts. We think Luke is the real last Jedi, only to find out that Rey is his daughter and can carry on the Skywalker Jedi bloodline. Even if Luke dies in the movie, Rey will presumably continue to exist as the real last Jedi.
Will Star Wars: The Last Jedi be Oscar nominated for Best Picture?
- Yes +200
- No -300
While all Star Wars movies dominate at the box office and most of them receive heaps of praise, they haven’t done a whole lot of damage come awards season. Sure, they’ll take home a few of the lesser awards, but none of the franchise’s previous eight (including Rogue One) titles have won Best Picture at the Academy Awards.
However, there is a history of nominations. The first film in the series, A New Hope, was nominated for Best Picture in 1977. Unfortunately, that’s the only film that has even been nominated for the award. The series has taken home a slew of technical awards, though Awakens did not win any of the five awards for which it was nominated in 2015.
In most years, there are between eight and 10 nominees for Best Picture. Unfortunately, most of the films that wind up winning tend to be low-budget types that exceed all expectations. Huge blockbusters like Star Wars don’t have much of a history when it comes to being nominated for or taking home Best Picture honors.
What about the competition? We obviously have no way of knowing which films from 2017 will be hot once award season hits, especially since there are still several months left in the year. Based on what’s already come out, though, it feels safe to assume that films like Dunkirk, The Big Sick and Get Out will receive a decent amount of Oscar love in a few months.
Of course, we are as hopeful and optimistic as anyone that Jedi will be awesome and will even surpass our heightened expectations. Still, these movies just don’t seem to get a whole lot of love around awards season, especially in the major categories like Best Picture.
Will Star Wars: The Last Jedi Gross over $1 billion?
- Yes -400
- No +250
As mentioned previously, the Star Wars movies are cash cows at the box office. Even the ones that were no good, like Phantom Menace, raked in the cash. Of course, Phantom Menace garnered over $1 billion in worldwide box office thanks in large part to the massive gap in time between the third and fourth films. Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, was released in 1983. Phantom Menace came out in 1999. Fans were geared up for the new one after having to wait nearly 20 years, so it was a huge success at the box office.
Unfortunately, the film lacked the quality that the first three installments had, which wound up negatively impacting how Episode II: Attack of the Clones fared. That film generated over $650 million worldwide, but that was quite a letdown given the success of Episode I. Awakens made nearly that much in its first weekend alone.
However, fans should be energized from Awakens. That film absolutely broke the bank, and Rogue One surprisingly followed that up by breaking the $1 billion threshold, as well. Considering Rogue One didn’t even have anything to do with the plot of Awakens, that should be a pretty strong sign that fan optimism and interest remains high.
So, it seems like Jedi is a shoo-in to surpass $1 billion worldwide. This, of course, is reflected in the odds.
Will Star Wars: The Last Jedi Have the Highest Opening Weekend Gross of 2017?
- Yes -400
- No +250
Back when it opened in late 2015, Awakens set a new record by grossing over $528 million on its opening weekend. It surpassed the previous record, which had actually been set by Jurassic World just a few months prior. Unfortunately, we are sad to report that the latest installment in the interminable Fast and Furious series has since broken Awakens’ record. Furious grossed over $541 million on its opening weekend earlier in 2017, casting a pall over humanity as we know it in the process.
Furious is going to make things difficult on Jedi here. Anticipation was huge for the series’ rebirth with Awakens, as reflected in the box office numbers. However, now that we know the series actually appears to be trending in the right direction, perhaps Jedi can fare even better on its opening weekend.
Can it garner more than $542 million on opening weekend? It’s possible, but it won’t be easy. That’s an all-time record for a reason. Still, we have faith that Star Wars nerds all over the planet will rejoice and flood theaters together on opening weekend.
Jedi will be the highest opening weekend grossing film of 2017.