HomeNews & VideoThe Curious Case of Nien Nunb

The Curious Case of Nien Nunb

The Rise of Skywalker had us saying goodbye to several major players – Leia, Ben, and Hux to name a few – but what about the smaller side characters? We may have lost an original trilogy pilot, but the facts are unclear.

Nien Nunb, Sullustan Rebel pilot from Return of the Jedi, made a comeback in the final battle at Exegol in the Tantive IV. The ship itself was overtaken with Palpatine’s Force lightning, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it went down completely. After all, Poe’s ship was temporarily disabled by the lightning as well. Bryan Young claimed on January 6th that Nien Nunb had passed, tweeting a picture of the pilot out with the simple caption, “Godspeed, Rebel. 1983-2019.”

Rae Carson, the author tasked to the novelization of The Rise of Skywalker, agreed with Young with the following tweet:

However, the puppeteer for Mr. Nunb, Mike Quinn, confirmed in a Facebook message thread that Nien survived the battle, claiming the Tantive IV was in the final celebrations:

Nien Nunb’s Wookieepedia page doesn’t clarify anything, either. It only says the ship was disabled by the lightning – it says nothing about a crash or explosion. It has no listed lifespan for the character, either.

Looks like we’ll have to wait and find out until the novelization addresses it – the canon novels go through a team of fact-checkers, so by time of publication, it should be the most accurate source. Unless, of course, J.J. Abrams himself catches wind of the debate and settles the issue once and for all.

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Jamie Binegar
"You cannot stop change any more than you can stop the suns from setting.” — Shmi Skywalker

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