Much has been made of Rian Johnson’s creative decisions for Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Many have loved his choices; A vocal minority has hated them. But regardless of how you feel about them, you can’t argue that he didn’t try to evolve and grow the Star Wars mythology. And he did so by pushing all of the main characters into some dark and often challenging situations. As it turns out, that was his intention from the outset.
In a chat with /FIlm, Johnson opened up about what his initial pitch for Star Wars: Episode VIII was. Here’s what he said:
“After Kathy [Kennedy] asked me if I’d be interested in it, we had a series of conversations, and basically my pitch was the first movie is like the introduction, the second movie is training. And by ‘training,’ I mean we take each of these characters and we really test their mettle. So I said that would be my approach to it, it’s a very character-based approach where we just start with each one of these characters we care about and figure out what the hardest next step is for each of them.”
“So having that trailhead to go from, it was also nice because it gives you a direction as opposed to just having a big cloud of childhood fantasies, of ‘Wouldn’t it be cool to see the Falcon do this or that?’ that you could get lost in, it wasn’t like that…once I actually started doing the work, I found that it felt really comfortable. And then all the childhood fantasy stuff is just fuel for the fire.”
Credit must be given to Kennedy, for not only agreeing to Johnson’s approach, but for allowing him to see it through. Johnson’s The Last Jedi script really did apply a ton of pressure and tested the lead characters in unexpected ways. If it was his goal to test these characters and see what kind of people they turn out to be after such trials and tribulations, he pulled that off in spades.
The Last Jedi has been the topic of a ton of scrutiny, and has been fairly divisive within the Star Wars fandom. Our editor-in-chief chimed in with a video review of the film, where he critiques The Last Jedi in ways that are far more analytical ways than many. He’s not a big fan of the film, but his issues aren’t fanboy-driven. You should check it out:
But let’s talk about this. Did you love Star Wars: The Last Jedi? Did you hate it? Why? Are your views of the strengths and weaknesses of the film based on your geek-driven expectations for the film, or are they based on the movie itself? What do you think of Johnson’s approach and the execution of it? Sound off!