One of the first big plot points we heard about Star Wars: The Force Awakens came in the summer of 2014, before the movie even had an official title. It stated that the film would open with Luke Skywalker’s severed hand floating through space, still holding his lightsaber from Empire’s Cloud City fight with Darth Vader, and the hand would fall through the atmosphere of Jakku and land on the surface of the planet. That obviously didn’t end up making the final cut that we saw in theaters, but now Mark Hamill himself has confirmed this was the original opening of the film. Speaking with The Sun, Hamill said:
“One day I read the first 15 minutes of the film absolutely accurately,” he said. “I can tell you now that in the original opening shot of 7, the first thing that came into frame was a hand with a lightsaber, a severed hand that enters the atmosphere, and then the hand and bone burns away and goes sticking into the surface of Jakku,” he added. “And this alien hand comes in, don’t know if it was Maz but it was an alien hand who takes the light saber way, and then the movie proceeds as you see it.”
I wonder if Abrams actually filmed that original opening. Maybe it’ll eventually make its way onto a Blu-ray release of the new trilogy or something a few years down the line. Either way, it has to feel good for Devin Faraci over at BirthMoviesDeath right now to have his scoop confirmed now even though it didn’t happen in the movie.