On Dec. 19, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker — the culmination of the four-decade triple trilogy — hits theaters. Can’t wait till then? Fear not. The Force is strong with Philly, and, beyond the film itself, there are lots of opportunities to practice your Chewy impression or Jedi mind tricks, or just show off your knowledge of parsecs, midi-chlorians, and, of course, Baby Yoda.
Here’s a roundup of Star Wars happenings in the Philly area. Go or go not. There is no try.
If you like Star Wars and you also like seeing someone pile-driven into a wrestling canvas, consider Dawg Pro Wrestling’s “Holiday Star Wars” at the MaxFit & Sports, 240 Delsea Dr. S., Glassboro, at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 28. Lead Dawg Dr. Lawrence Zirconium says the match is a child-friendly event (designed to raise money for Toys for Tots and the Glassboro Food Bank), and Star Wars cosplay characters will be milling about, but not actually wrestling.
“Star Wars” is an old-school wrestling term that speaks to top-of-the-ticket matches, explained Dr. Zirconium. (You can’t have Darth Vader wrestle Luke Skywalker, he said, or the Disney Lawyer Death Star would likely be deployed.)
If you prefer the painting canvas (16-by-20) to the wrestling canvas, Painting with a Twist at 611 South St. will offer classes ($37) on how to paint Chewbacca at 6 p.m. on Dec. 15. Painting with a Twist is BYOB, and aspiring artists and Chewbacca fans are encouraged to imbibe while learning.
Star Wars characters will be roller-skating at the The Rolling Thunder Skating Rink, 7017 E. Roosevelt Blvd., from 5 to 9 p.m on Friday, Dec. 20. Families are invited to skate along ($7.50 for kids $8.50 for adults).
Regal Cinemas is offering a Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker opening night fan event at 5 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 19. In addition to seeing the movie early, attendees will receive a collectible pin, lanyard, and a free large popcorn. Participating theaters are Regal Downingtown, Regal RiverView, Regal King of Prussia, and Regal Warrington.
AMC is offering opening night fan events Dec. 19 at the AMC Deptford 8, AMC Hamilton, and AMC Neshaminy locations, also with commemorative pins. Skywalker will command all of the premium formats, including the IMAX, RPX, 4DX (the seats that move) at Regal King of Prussia, and the Dolby Atmos theater at the new AMC Fashion District 8 in Center City, a dine-in theater where, AMC says, its mixologists are devising a Star Wars-themed cocktail. AMC, by the way, welcomes cosplay but has a rule against masks or face paint.
On Dec. 20, the Philadelphia Film Center at 1412 Chestnut St. is offering a Rise of Skywalker Use the Force ticket package — for $25, you get priority admission, prescreening Quizzo at 5:45 p.m., special prizes, and free popcorn throughout the movie, which starts at 6:45.
And on Dec. 27, the Film Center hosts a matinee (at noon) kids’ day screening of Skywalker, part of its “themed afternoon, filled with Star Wars activities including a session on making your own lightsaber, a Star Wars red carpet, and a costume parade, complete with giveaways.” $10 for adults, $8 for kids.
If you’re a Star Wars nut and a Quizzo fiend, this is your special time. In the coming weeks, there is Star Wars Quizzo and trivia up the Obi-Wazoo:
Hardcore fans may also want to consider a nine-movie AMC Star Wars marathon. Nothing is scheduled in the Philadelphia area, but if you’re willing to sit through 24 hours of Star Wars movies — because that’s almost exactly how long the marathon lasts (and about how long The Phantom Menace feels) — you might be willing to drive a couple hours to New York or Washington, where AMC is staging these events.