I visited Ireland a few years ago and on the trip I learned the history of a set of islands just off the west coast of the magical country. The story of the Skellig Islands interested me so much that I bought, and actually read, a book that was about its history.
The Skellig Islands (Irish: Na Scealaga), once known as the Skellocks, are two small, steep, and rocky islands lying about 13 km west of Bolus Head on the Iveragh Peninsula in County Kerry, Ireland. They are famous for their thriving gannet and puffin populations, and for an early Christian monastery that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
I did not have a chance to visit the islands, but next time I go to the Emerald Isle I plan to. The story of how the monks built their monastery and lived there for years is amazing. They even had to fight off vikings that came to sack their treasures. So how does this tie into Star Wars? Well director J.J. Abrams is using Skellig Michael, the largest of the islands for a scene from the movie.
This week I came across photos of the director, crew, and star Mark Hamill as they got off their helicopter onto the island. Of course no details on what is being filmed there have been released but I am betting it has something to do with Jedi Master Luke Skywalker being in isolation, a la Obi Wan in Episode IV. There have been rumors about the plot of Episode VII, that no one has heard from or seen Luke since the events of Return of the Jedi. Now of course these aren’t confirmed either, so take all of this with a grain of salt.
Photo creds go to Charles McQuillan and Getty Images. You can check out more pics here.
I just think it’s really neat that my favorite franchise of all time is filming at one of the locations on Earth that I have a lot of interest in, and has a special place in my heart. These kind of things only make me EVEN MORE excited for this movie to come out! December 2015 is too far away!
May the Force be with you!