Warning: Spoilers for Star Wars: The Last Jedi follow…
Star Wars: The Last Jedi was certainly full of surprises – not least the fate of Andy Serkis’ Supreme Leader Snoke, who after two years of fan theories and speculation, was cut down by his apprentice Kylo Ren, without any of his backstory revealed to the audience.
During an interview with IGN, director Rian Johnson has addressed his treatment of Snoke in the film, stating that he felt the Supreme Leader’s death not only furthered the character of Kylo Ren, but also served to add to the intrigue as to where the story might go in Star Wars: Episode IX.
“Snoke’s place in this movie came about largely from me figuring out Kylo’s arc, what Kylo’s arc was going to be in this movie,” said Johnson. “In my mind what I wanted to do with Kylo was to take him and basically knock out the kind of shaky foundation from under his feet, and build him by he end of the movie into someone who’s standing up as a credible, but complex villain. He’s taken the reins, basically. He’s no longer a Vader pretender. He’s somebody who actually is going to be going into the next movie [as] someone who’s taken control and taken the reins of everything.”
“That led very quickly to the idea [of killing Snoke],” he continued. “Because then you get to… okay, you have Kylo there at the end, what is Snoke’s place in all this? And do you really want Kylo to be that but with an Emperor figure over him? And if it is that, then suddenly your options are much more familiar going into the next movie. So it led to this notion of okay, so that means we’re going to have this dramatic moment where Snoke goes [dies] and that means that Kylo can then ascend, actually ascend. And then that means that all bets are off for the next movie and we can’t go into it with assumptions of what’s going to happen, because we’ve taken away the familiar element, which I think is powerful.
“And ultimately Snoke was not built up in the last movie. He was built up with fan theories since the last movie. The truth is Snoke has a couple of very brief scenes in the last film. And I love fan theories by the way. I don’t want to just poo-poo them. I think that’s an important part of Star Wars fandom and I think it’s really fun to think about where these people came from, but the truth is in terms of Snoke’s actual place in this movie, it’s much more similar to the Emperor’s place in the original trilogy. It’s not about where he comes from. It’s not about his backstory. He is the guy behind the guy, and I think he plays out his part in this movie as is appropriate.”
Meanwhile, as with Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the character of Captain Phasma (Gwendoline Christie) featured heavily in the marketing campaign for The Last Jedi, only to find herself relegated to a handful of scenes, which ultimately ended with her death after a battle with John Boyega’s Finn aboard Snoke’s Supremacy. However, as Johnson explains to IGN, Phasma was a victim of having to incorporate a stacked cast of characters:
“I mean, as you can see, man, we had a really full movie already,” said Johnson. “We had a big, big movie with a lot of characters we were trying to serve, and the God’s honest truth is, every character had to find their natural place. And Phasma supports Finn’s storyline, obviously, and there just… until she shows up to fight him at the end, look through the story that we have, there’s just not a lot of space to go into a big Phasma storyline in it. So the truth is it’s just a very big cast and you have to kind of pick your battles with it.”
What did you make of Snoke and Phasma’s treatment in Star Wars: The Last Jedi? Did you want to see more, or where they handled correctly? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below…
In Lucasfilm’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, the Skywalker saga continues as the heroes of The Force Awakens join the galactic legends in an epic adventure that unlocks age-old mysteries of the Force and shocking revelations of the past.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi sees returning cast members Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), Carrie Fisher (Leia Organa), Adam Driver (Kylo Ren), Daisy Ridley (Rey), John Boyega (Finn), Oscar Isaac (Poe Dameron), Lupita Nyong’o (Maz Kanata), Domhnall Gleeson (General Hux), Anthony Daniels (C-3PO), Gwendoline Christie (Captain Phasma), Billie Lourd (Lieutenant Connix), Andy Serkis (Supreme Leader Snoke), Peter Mayhew and Joonas Suotamo (Chewbacca), Tim Rose (Admiral Ackbar), Mike Quinn (Nien Nunb) and Warwick Davis joined by new additions Jimmy Vee (Pan) as R2-D2, Kelly Marie Tran (Ladies Like Us) as Rose, Benicio Del Toro (Guardians of the Galaxy) as DJ and Laura Dern (Jurassic Park) as Vice Admiral Holdo.