Will Snoke (Andy Serkis) be revealed to be Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) in “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”? A new theory about the film suggests that the Emperor managed to live on in some form after his fall in “Return of the Jedi,” and created the First Order.

When Snoke was first introduced, there was a lot of mystery about his background. Just as the fans were waiting to find out in the upcoming film who the former Supreme Leader really was, everyone was surprised by the return of the Emperor in the first teaser trailer of the film.

A new theory about the upcoming film on Screen Rant suggests that Snoke is actually Palpatine. As evidence, the report cites the “Aftermath” novels that explain the events right after the supposed death of the Emperor and the fall of the Empire.

In the novels, Palpatine was searching for some dark power in the Unknown Regions, and he was also putting in place a contingency plan in case of his death. He had plans of taking a select few loyal followers to the Unknown Regions and starting a new Empire there.

Apart from the plan, the novels also revealed that one of the followers Yupe Tashu was convinced that the Emperor lives on, and that he will be found in the Unknown Regions.

In the non-canon novels that are now called “Legends,” Palpatine transferred his consciousness to a clone after his death. Will the movies show that he transferred his consciousness to Snoke in order to survive?

Snoke has lived for a long time and is familiar with the significant events of the past. He has a grudge against the Skywalkers and hates the New Republic. Add to this the fact that he chose Ben Solo (Adam Driver) to lead his forces, which suggests that he may in fact be Palpatine.

The other way in which Palpatine could return in the upcoming film is as a Force Ghost. According to another theory by Screen Rant the Emperor can’t return as a Force Ghost because this is a power only the light-side Force wielders can learn.

How Palpatine will return in “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” will be revealed only after the movie is released. The film will hit the theaters on Dec. 20.