Rian Johnson is the writer and director of the film. He's known for his work on the AMC series Breaking Bad.
During my trip to Los Angeles, he talked with me about being a childhood fan of the galaxy opera he now leads and the pressure to tell a story Star Wars fans will respect and revel in.
We first talked about the actors being shocked about the direction of their characters.
"Well, I was just trying to draw a line forward from where The Force Awakens left off. I think there were incredible characters that were created in that movie and given such amazing introductions, each of them. And it was just a question with this film of, 'okay where does it make sense for them to go next?' And so I wasn't trying to do some crazy zig-zag, I was trying to tell a story that made sense to me. But in the course of following that it honestly it takes you to some unexpected places, so...hopefully there will be some surprises," he said.
Director Rian Johnson
I asked him what he thought the fan reaction would be to the storyline.
"I don't know. It's weird having been a Star Wars fan myself for the past 40 years. I feel like everyone is going to be different. That's one thing you learn," she said. "It puts pressure on and it takes pressure off in equal measure knowing that every Star Wars fan is going to have stuff they love and stuff they don't about it. But that's part of being a Star Wars fan," he said.
"For people who say the last Jedi goes a little dark, what do you say to that? Do you perceive it to be as such?" I asked.
"Well it's the middle chapter, so it's the one where we really have to challenge everybody and test their mettle. And so we're going to some dark places, but it's also was so important to me that it was a Star Wars movie. And that means that it's got the opera, that also has the bubble gum. It's also got one foot in Flash Gordon and still I hope it's fun. I hope it's funny. I hope it makes you come out of the theater wanting to grab your toys and run in the backyard with them. That's the kind of feeling."
Daisy Ridley "Rey"
Mark Hamill "Luke Skywalker"
John Boyega "Finn"
Laura Dern & Oscar Isaac
Kelly Marie Tran
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