You've probably seen it pasted all over movie news outlets today: R2-D2 will be in Star Wars Episode: VII. It's confirmed. This is the first character we can absolutely say for sure will be in the film. Han Solo might not show up. Luke Skywalker might sit this one out. They may even decide to do away with lightsabers. But R2-D2 will be there.
And yet, people seem to be ignoring the larger news this implies. Through his curious absence, it can be inferred that R2-D2's constant companion, C-3PO, will not appear. Why else confirm one robot and not the other? Bad Robot has declined to offer me details on this matter, despite my steadfast refusal to ask for any. The silence is deafening.
All this R2-D2 brouhaha started several days ago when Bad Robot tweeted a photo of J.J. Abrams with the tiny robot. Today merely marks confirmation of what many already guessed. But the double attention on one robot with no mention of the other only makes his absence that much more suspicious.
Perhaps C-390 dies between Return of the Jedi and this new film. Or maybe he's being saved for Episode VIII. Or it could just be that J.J. Abrams thinks he's annoying and would characteristically prefer to ignore him altogether. We'll just have to wait and see when Star Wars: Episode VII comes out May 2018.