Fans thrilled as first trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi is revealed

Patrick Grafton-Green

The eagerly anticipated first trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi has been unveiled, offering fans a first peek at the sci-fi franchise's eighth episode.

It was first shown on Friday as part of a panel at the Star Wars Celebration in Orlando, Florida, before being released online.

The two-minute teaser begins with Rey, played by Daisy Ridley, apparently clambering over the mountain where she faced Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker at the end of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

It ends with a chilling voiceover from the actor, who tells Rey: "I only know one's time for the Jedi to end".

There also appears to be a brief glimpse from behind of the late actress Carrie Fisher, who filmed a reprise of her role as Princess Leia before her death last year.

She died aged 60 in December after suffering a heart attack on a flight from London to Los Angeles.

Fans have taken to social media to express their excitement at the trailer.

One Twitter user said: "Just the music in the #StarWars #TheLastJedi trailer got me excited."

Another wrote: “Well I'll be putting the new Star Wars trailer on repeat for the rest of the afternoon.”

And another said: "That was intense! Too bad I have to wait till December to see it. Let the countdown begin!"

The film, which will open in cinemas on December 15, will also see Hamill and Kylo Ren star Adam Driver return.

Its new trailer already promises more dramatic battle scenes as well as some stunning scenery shots and the famous original score.

The Disney production is written and directed by Rian Johnson and produced by Kathleen Kennedy and Ram Bergman.

Disney's chief executive Bob Iger recently assured fans that further images of Fisher would not be digitally recreated for the film.

He told a University of Southern California conference: "Her performance, which we're really pleased with, remains as it was."