Recently on the Star Wars Leaks Reddit, a user posted an image from Empire Magazine previewing 2019 movies. Naturally there was a look at Star Wars: Episode IX, and there was one significant tidbit that really stood out.
According to this Empire article, “John Boyega has confirmed the film takes place roughly one year after the events of The Last Jedi.”
There’s no direct quote from Boyega that says that, so we obviously have to take into account that it’s possible this author just got confused about other public comments Boyega has made so far. But from an outlet as reputable as Empire, and stated as directly as it is, it certainly seems like confirmation of a time jump.
A time jump isn’t surprising in the least, however, as it was almost essential. The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi take place immediately back-to-back, so Episode IX needed to jump forward or else have the entire sequel trilogy take place within a very short amount of time. Additionally, we’ve already got a story post-TLJ (in the Poe Dameron comic) and we know that Finn has time to grow out his hair a little longer, for instance. So every sign that we’ve had so far suggests a time jump; the only question was how long. And it sounds like we now know: one year.
That’s actually nothing crazy when it comes to Star Wars films, as it’ll still be one of the shortest time jumps of any film of the Skywalker saga. But it does provide some breathing room to fill in more details of what has happened post-TLJ, as well as allow room for other ancillary media to tell stories and fill in gaps.