Darth Vader's castle concept art from Force Awakens

An obsidian castle rises out of boiling lava. Inside, the Sith Lord Darth Vader – seen out of his iconic armor – floats in a bacta tank and contemplates his evil plans, his constant pain eased by the rejuvenating water…

This was our most recent look at the planet Mustafar in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, but new evidence suggests future Star Wars films will return to the planet again before the new saga trilogy is complete.

We’ve seen Mustafar before, of course: it’s the planet on which Anakin Skywalker fought Obi-Wan Kenobi in Revenge of the Sith, the place where he got his limbs chopped off and was burned by the planet’s raging fires. Vader later built his castle there, and when Rogue One was released, Peter wrote a piece in which he mentioned he heard we hadn’t seen the last of that terrible place.

Lucasfilm VP and Executive Creative Director Doug Chiang seems to agree, because in an interview with Uproxx, he explains the history of the castle and hints that we’ll see it again in a new movie:

“It’s interesting, we did a lot of history exploration. Why did Vader build his castle here? Why does it look the way it does? Why does he even come here? For us, it was really figuring out that Vader built his castle on an existing structure, which was this ancient lava dam. And he built it here for a very specific reason. It was to come back here to meditate, to rejuvenate, to reconnect with himself. And it became a very spiritual place, and it was all centered around his bacta tank. And that’s where the form language all built around there. And we’ve done quite a bit of exploration of what’s on the inside of it as well, and hopefully that’ll be seen in some other film.”

So how could that location play into new movies, which take place more than thirty years after Return of the Jedi? The obvious link is Kylo Ren, who is clearly obsessed with his grandfather, Darth Vader, and has already exhibited a penchant for collecting rare Vader-related items. My guess is Kylo, downtrodden after losing his fight with Rey at the end of The Force Awakens, visits Mustafar in The Last Jedi and scours Darth Vader’s castle, searching for anything that will help him further embrace the dark side. I’ve seen speculation that the planet itself generates a form of power for those who can tap into the dark side of the Force, so perhaps Kylo will head there looking to level up.

Side note: according to Wookieepedia, the planet of Mustafar is also home to native creatures known as “lava fleas,” which Mustafarians tamed and rode around like horses. So here’s hoping we see that bizarre piece of lore make it into a future movie too, just for the weirdness of it all.

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