Luke Skywalker is one of the most popular figures in entertainment history and has become a pop culture icon. He is one of the primary characters in the Star Wars movies and television series, which has gone on to influence decades of action genre fans and which successfully continues to do so.
The death of Luke Skywalker was one of the biggest moments in the history of the Star Wars film series. The pivotal moment takes place in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and it has been a point of debate since then regarding the reason for his death and whether it should have happened at all in the first place. Even when Mark Hamill (the actor who played Luke Skywalker) himself has gone on to confirm the cause of Luke’s death, numerous theories and debates have come about regarding what actually caused the incident.
So how did Luke Skywalker ultimately die?
How Did Luke Skywalker Die?
Luke Skywalker dies when he Force projects himself from Ahch-To to Crait. He did it to distract Kylo Ren and allow Leia, Rey and the rest of the Resistance to escape. Although he successfully achieved the feat and allowed them to escape, Force protecting himself across the galaxy required every ounce of his physical and mental energy, and the draining of it is what ultimately killed him.
Although the Fore projection trick is found in Star Wars myths, the act has never been attempted on-screen before. Using the force in such a way over a huge distance is incredibly draining, and that too for Luke who is no longer young.
Another point worth considering is that Luke had closed himself from the Force for many years before using the power. So even if we suppose that the Force projection is not so strenuous that it can cause death to the person, the challenging feat would be potentially lethal to any person as aged as Luke.
With the escape of the Resistance, his supreme sacrifice reignited a spark of hope for the entire galaxy and it also drew a lesson for his nephew Ben Solo on selfless sacrifice and redemption.
Luke goes on to spend his final moments after returning from his Force projection watching the sunset in Ahch-To, and passes away, becoming one with the Force.
A meta reason that could be attributed to Luke’s death could be that The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson wanted to mirror Obi Wan’s sacrifice which took place towards the end of Episode IV. In Star Wars lore, “Ring Theory” is set to mean that events cause ripples like circles, like in a pond when a rock is thrown in the water, with each circle mirroring the previous one perfectly.
When Luke sacrifices himself to save the Resistance, his death exactly mirrors what Wan did for him a long time back. Instead of fighting, he gave up his life to buy more time for his allies
Fans get to see Luke Skywalker again as a Force ghost in The Rise of Skywalker. When Rey reaches her lowest point and strands herself in Ahch-To, Luke’s Force ghost appears and provides her comfort and hope so as to carry on her journey. His Force ghost also appears for a final time Leia’s Force Ghost at the end of the film as they watch Rey on Tatooine.