Chris Terrio, the writer of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, says that the film isn’t arguing with Rian Johnson’s The Last Jedi.
Now that Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is in cinemas around the world, one thing numerous viewers have picked up on is that the film seems to be in some kind of argument with The Last Jedi – especially regarding the role of Luke Skywalker.
Many fans were unhappy with how The Last Jedi treated Luke, even though the character returned to his heroic ways at the end of the movie, sacrificing himself to help the resistance.
One thing fans are pointing to is Luke casually throwing away his father’s lightsaber in The Last Jedi but in Episode IX, catching the weapon when Rey went to throw it away, saying “a Jedi’s weapon deserves more respect”. Was this a dig at The Last Jedi?
Chris Terrio, the writer of Episode IX, has now confirmed what director J.J. Abrams has said previously, that The Rise of Skywalker isn’t in an argument with Episode VIII. Speaking to THR, he said:
“Those people who see it as a meta-argument between J.J. and Rian are missing the point, I think. At the end of The Last Jedi, Luke has changed. When people look at that, I feel that they misread the ending of The Last Jedi. Throughout The Last Jedi, Luke is stuck, just as so many of the characters in The Empire Strikes Back were stuck. The Falcon’s hyperdrive is literally stuck. The Last Jedi is a really strong middle act because it seems like everyone is spinning their wheels and stuck in certain ways — just as they are in The Empire Strikes Back. I mean that in the sense of everyone is trying to move forward, but as in any middle act, they can’t quite get there.”
Terrio says the line about respecting lightsabers is “Luke speaking” not the writers: “That’s his own character. He’s making fun of himself. He’s saying to Rey, ‘Please don’t make the same mistake that I did. That’s another theme of the film. How do we learn from our ancestors? How do we learn from our parents? How do we learn from the previous generation? How do we learn from all the good things that they did but not repeat their mistakes?”
Terrio says that the scene on Ahch-To “truly is a character moment because we quite deliberately set up the same situation of tossing a saber, but this time, Luke is there to save Rey from making a bad choice.
“I think it would be a bad misreading to think that that was somehow me and J.J. having an argument with Rian. It was more like we were in dialogue with Rian by using what Luke did at the beginning of The Last Jedi to now say that history will not repeat itself and all these characters have grown.”
What do you think of these comments? Do you see Luke’s actions in Episode IX as a continuation of the change he had made at the end of The Last Jedi? Let us know in the comments below and on Twitter @flickeringmyth.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker sees J.J. Abrams (Star Wars: The Force Awakens) directing a cast that includes Star Wars veterans Daisy Ridley (Rey), Adam Driver (Kylo Ren), John Boyega (Finn), Oscar Isaac (Poe Dameron), Lupita Nyong’o (Maz Kanata), Domhnall Gleeson (General Hux), Kelly Marie Tran (Rose Tico), Joonas Suotamo (Chewbacca), Billie Lourd (Lieutenant Connix), Greg Grunberg (Snap Wexley), Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), Anthony Daniels (C-3PO), Billy Dee Williams (Lando Calrissian), Ian McDiarmid (Emperor Palpatine) and Carrie Fisher (Leia Organa) as well as new additions Naomi Ackie (Lady Macbeth), Richard E. Grant (Logan), Dominic Monaghan (Lost), and Keri Russell (The Americans).