Rey meets Luke Skywalker in ‘The Force Awakens’ (Photo: Lucasfilm/Disney)
By Hilary Lewis
J.J. Abrams has already said he knows who Rey’s parents are, but he of course isn’t naming names.
And speaking at the Tribeca Film Festival on Friday, the Force Awakens director revealed who her parents aren’t.
During the audience Q&A after the talk between Abrams and Chris Rock concluded, a young fan asked the question on many Star Wars fans’ minds: Who are Rey’s parents?
At first Abrams jokingly told the kid to get out. But then he may have dropped a big clue about the identity of Daisy Ridley’s character’s mom and dad: “Rey’s parents are not in Episode VII. So I can’t possibly say in this moment who they are. But I will say it is something that Rey thinks about, too.”
That information seems to contradict popular speculation that Rey could be Luke’s daughter or the daughter of Luke’s sister Leia, and possibly Han Solo, making her Kylo Ren’s sister.
At the Television Critics Association’s Winter Press Tour, Abrams said of Rey’s parents: “I know quite a bit.”
“Obviously it’s not for me to talk about in this moment because this is [Episode VIII director] Rian [Johnson]’s story to continue now,” Abrams continued. “The last thing I’m going to do is reveal something that he would be upset about. I want to make sure that Rian gets the courtesy that he showed me.”
But with many more Star Wars films in the pipeline, including Episode VIII, perhaps in time fans, and Rey, will find out more about her family.
After the Q&A, though, Abrams clarified his comments to Entertainment Weekly. “What I meant was that she doesn’t discover them in Episode VII. Not that they may not already be in her world,” Abrams said.
Still, Abrams shared other Force Awakens insights during his career-spanning discussion with Rock, with the final minutes devoted to Abrams’ time in a galaxy far, far away.
Abrams discussed his decision to keep Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker out of the film until the very end, saying “We knew that getting to Luke was the whole story.”
But he revealed that Hamill was reluctant to the concept worried it would seem “silly” or “like a joke that he’s standing there at the end.”
Abrams was confident that wouldn’t be the case.
“This whole movie—because it’s all about him—this could be this great fun drumroll up to seeing this guy,” he said, adding that it wasn’t until he filmed the scene, seeing Hamill as Skywalker in the Jedi robes and listening to part of John Williams’ Star Wars score that he realized the “ending could really work.”
He also revealed that a silver lining to Harrison Ford’s Millennium Falcon injury was that it gave him the opportunity to rethink and reshoot Rey and Finn’s scene together in the Millennium Falcon, claiming the first time they did that, prior to Ford’s injury, “It didn’t work at all. They were much more contentious. I didn’t direct it right. It was set up all wrong.”
During the break caused by Ford’s injury, Abrams said he “was able to look at everything we’d done and rethink it and rewrite quite a bit of that relationship. So when we came back to work we actually just reshot, from the ground up, those scenes, and it was an amazingly powerful thing to get these two characters to where they needed to be.”
April 15, 9:55 p.m. This story has been updated to include Abrams’ clarification of his comment about Rey’s parents and more information from the Force Awakens portion of Abrams and Rock’s talk.
Read More: Complete Tribeca Film Festival coverage