Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) looks extremely pensive in brief new footage from “Star Wars: Episode 8.”

Video screenshot by Anthony Domanico/CNET

It may not make the release date come any sooner, but Star Wars fans should be thrilled to learn that filming for “Star Wars: Episode VIII” has officially kicked off in London, announced on Monday.

The highly anticipated film began principal photography at Pinewood Studios in London on Monday, meaning that actors have returned to the set and the cameras are rolling.

Alongside the production announcement, the company released a short announcement video that shows Mark Hamill and Daisy Ridley as Luke Skywalker and Rey in the first footage from the new movie.

The video concludes with writer and director Rian Johnson welcoming us all to “Star Wars: Episode VIII.”

The post also announced a few new cast members joining the Star Wars universe for “Episode VIII.” The new cast members include Benicio del Toro, Laura Dern and Kelly Marie Tran.

“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” shattered box office records when it debuted worldwide over the holidays, and the folks at Disney and Lucasfilm are hoping for a repeat with “Episode 8,” which is scheduled for release in the US, UK and Australia on December 15, 2017.

Original source:

'Star Wars: Episode VIII' begins filming as new cast members join the galaxy – CNET