Co-writer/director J.J. Abrams’ upcoming Star Wars 7 takes place some thirty years after the events of Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi; the film will also introduce a new generation of heroes and villains to serve as the anchors for Walt Disney Pictures and Lucasfilm’s third Star Wars movie trilogy. Among the antagonists in the movie are the agents of The First Order (a.k.a. “the new Galactic Empire”) as well as the mysterious dark force user Kylo Ren, played by Adam Driver (This Is Where I Leave You, Girls).
Abrams’ in an interview with Empire gave some details regarding the villian of the film Kylo Ren and his evil organization
“Kylo Ren is not a Sith. He works under Supreme Leader Snoke, who is a powerful figure on the Dark Side of the Force.”
Kylo Ren and Supreme Leader Snoke are in allegiance with The First Order in The Force Awakens, as evidenced by official screenshots from the film showing Ren flanked by stormtroopers. It makes sense for The First Order – which rose in the aftermath of Palpatine and Vader’s defeat in Return of the Jedi – to align itself with Dark Force users like the Galactic Empire before it, based on how Abrams describes the organization and the way it views Palpatine’s original Empire:
“That all came out of conversations about what would have happened if the Nazis all went to Argentina but then started working together again? What could be born of that? Could The First Order exist as a group that actually admired The Empire? Could the work of The Empire be seen as unfulfilled? And could Vader be a martyr? Could there be a need to see through what didn’t get done?”
Star Wars: The Force Awakens hits theaters on December 18th, 2015, followed by Rogue One: A Star Wars Story on December 16th, 2016, Star Wars: Episode VIII on May 26th, 2017, and the Han Solo Star Wars Anthology film on May 25th, 2018. Star Wars: Episode IX is expected to reach theaters in 2019, followed by the third Star Wars Anthology film in 2020.