Masahiro Sakurai, the creator of the Super Smash Bros. series, posted quite an intriguing image on his Miiverse account today leading to a plethora of character speculation.
The picture features a statue of Palutena from the Kid Icarus series as part of the background of a stage. Recently some photos have leaked featuring Palutena battling Mario on the Nintendo 3DS version of the game. These images have not been confirmed as fake or real, but seem to be very convincing.
What is important to note is that the addition of Palutena as a background image does not necessarily mean she will not be a playable character. Early screenshots of the game featured an image of Toon Link conducting a train as part of the background of a stage. Months later he was confirmed as a playable character.
Sakurai also recently posted an interesting image of the aforementioned train stage. The screenshot showed that if Toon Link was being used as a playable character on the stage, that the train would be conducted by another character from the Zelda series. This could also mean that if Palutena were to be a playable character, that her statue could just be replaced to avoid a similar redundancy.
Another important thing to consider is that with the recent success of Kid Icarus: Uprising for the 3DS, the series may be due for a second character in Smash Bros. to join Pit. That also goes without mentioning that Uprising was directed by Sakurai.
Sakurai updates his Miiverse every weekday with a caption describing a screenshot. The screenshots can also be found daily on the official Smash Bros. site.