EXCLUSIVE: Daisy Ridley Opens Up About 'Star Wars: Episode VIII' and New Director Rian Johnson

The actress spoke to ET about the atmosphere on set as production begins on the new installment of the iconic space franchise.

Daisy Ridley is already back at work on Star Wars: Episode VIII and though there’s a different face in the director’s chair -- Looper’s Rian Johnson has stepped in to fill J.J. Abrams’ shoes for the next installment of the iconic space franchise -- not much has changed.

“It's still very lovely and warm and friendly,” the actress told ET last week at Abrams’ Bad Robot Productions while promoting the Star Wars: The Force Awakens DVD/Blu-ray release. “Just like VII was.”

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Abrams worked hard to keep the details of Star Wars: The Force Awakens under wraps, but now that the ball’s rolling on the franchise’s third trilogy, Ridley says that things are “a little bit freer." In fact, Johnson plans to be “a bit cheekier” with what he releases from production.

“Obviously it went really well with VII, but it's wonderful to give people a little bit,” the 23-year-old actress explained. “I think we did do that for VII, just a little bit to keep the interest peaked.”

The first tease from the film was released two weeks ago, and included shots of Ridley and Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker, seemingly picking up from the final scene of Force Awakens. The clip also showed Johnson welcoming the cast and crew to Episode VIII.

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“WE ARE FILMING ?????????????????????,” Ridley captioned the video, which she reposted on her Instagram account.”We also have INCREDIBLE new cast members including Kelly Marie Tran who is raaaaad and who likes musicals too.”

Tran joins Star Wars newcomers Benicio del Toro and Laura Dern in the new film, which is scheduled for a December 2017 release.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens is available on DVD and Blu-Ray on April 5, and will be out on digital HD on April 1.

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