LOS ANGELES

- Stormtroopers marched and droids rolled down the red carpet at "The Force Awakens" world premiere yesterday, heralding the return of "Star Wars" after a decade-long absence from the big screen.

A giant opaque tent shrouded the carpet, which was lined with Stormtrooper mannequins and neon lights that resembled giant lightsabers. Inside the tent, a whole constellation of stars were assembled, including Harrison Ford, Lupita Nyong'o, Jon Favreau and Janelle Monae.

Before the film's human stars arrived, the droid BB-8 rolled by the cameras. The soccerball-esque droid has been a popular fixture in trailers for the seventh "Star Wars" film, and it was soon joined by series mainstays C-3PO and R2-D2.

John Williams' soaring score played as "The Force Awakens" cast, including Ford, Nyong'o, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Max von Sydow, Gwendolyn Christie, John Boyega and Daisy Ridley conducted interviews.

At one point, Fisher turned the microphone on her co-star, Oscar Isaac, and conducted an interview that included her dropping an expletive.

Ford reflected on the impact of the film and the role that catapulted him to superstardom.

"Well, in the '70s nobody knew what to anticipate," Ford said in an interview with Starwars.com. "Nobody had ever seen anything like it. Now we have to live up to what the first films delivered."

Despite being in charge of "The Force Awakens" for the past three years, director J.J. Abrams seemed overwhelmed by the magnitude of the premiere.

"It's very surreal. I've never seen this kind of thing," he told Starwars.com.