Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker premieres in just a few weeks, and fans everywhere are not only getting pumped for the finale of the Skywalker Saga but also reflecting on the films that we’ve seen thus far. And with The Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams returning for The Rise of Skywalker, he’s sharing his opinions on the film that took place in between his two: Rian Johnson’s The Last Jedi.
In a recent interview, Abrams candidly spoke about The Last Jedi, sharing his thoughts on the film and revealing the things that surprised him the most.
“I felt the biggest surprise was how dark Luke was,” Abrams said to Rolling Stone. “That was the thing that I thought: ‘Oh, that was unexpected.’ And that’s the thing The Last Jedi undeniably succeeds at, which is constant subversion of expectation. The number of things that happened in that movie that aren’t the thing you think is going to happen is pretty fun.”
As Cinemablend points out, Abrams isn’t the only face in Hollywood who expressed his concern or skepticism about “dark Luke” in The Last Jedi. The real-life Luke Skywalker himself, Mark Hamill, even said that he didn’t understand Luke or the choices the character made in The Last Jedi, although he later said he regrets those comments and respects Johnson’s work on the film.
Yes, Johnson did receive a lot of criticism for The Last Jedi. But Abrams has also shared publicly that Johnson’s directorial choices in The Last Jedi inspired him to be more daring and take more risks for The Rise of Skywalker, the final film in this trilogy and the grand finale to the Skywalker Saga. It is this “subversion of expectation” that keeps fans on the edge of their movie seats while watching these epic tales of Star Wars lore, and part of that suspense and surprise is what makes these films so fun to see.
Johnson and Abrams also seem to have kept each other in the loop throughout the making of this Star Wars trilogy. And while Abrams does admit that he was confused by some of Johnson’s choices (like the Snoke twist), it’s good to know that the films were all made to feel as connected as possible to each other.
What do you think of The Rise of Skywalker so far? Are you excited that Abrams is back directing the film? Do you wish Abrams or Johnson had directed the entire trilogy? Share your take on Star Wars in the comments!