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Lucasfilm Ltd.
Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) fills Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen) with stories of power beyond belief.

SALT LAKE CITY — Is Emperor Palpatine coming back to the “Star Wars” universe in “The Rise of Skywalker” later this year?

Last Friday, “Star Wars” shared the first teaser trailer for “The Rise of Skywalker,” at the Star Wars Celebration event. The trailer ended with Emperor Palpatine cackling at the end of the trailer just as Luke Skywalker says, “No one is ever really gone.”

Then, to hammer home the point, Ian McDiarmid, who plays Palpatine in the “Star Wars” films, stepped out onstage. Director JJ Abrams later confirmed that McDiarmid would return for the film.

But it turns out the laugh came from stock footage from “Star Wars.”

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"Like everybody else, I had no idea what the title was," McDiarmid revealed to "The Star Wars Show." "They did let me into a secret that the Emperor might be laughing, but I have to tell you that that particular laugh was not specially recorded, they found it somewhere, probably from one of the movies or the digital vault or maybe George's iPhone, I don't know."

According to ComicBook.com, Palpatine will probably return to the franchise, but in a unique way. It’s possible he’ll tap into the Force and appears as a force ghost.

But there are precedents for Palpatine to return to “Star Wars.” In the “Battlefront II” video game, droids shared Palpatine’s face. And in the expanded universe books, which are no longer canon, Palpatine returned as a clone of himself, which I wrote about for the Deseret News.