This has been a surprisingly action-packed week for Star Wars fans. On Twitter, Mark Hamill and Chris Evans debated about whether or not Luke Skywalker’s lightsaber could cut through Captain America’s shield. Over in London, John Boyega visited his former elementary school to help teach kids how to train like a Jedi. And director Rian Johnson clapped back at some of his critics in a pretty epic way.
While The Last Jedi, which he wrote and directed, was both a critical and commercial success, it also got a lot of heat from some of the saga’s most devoted fans for its portrayal of Luke Skywalker. In particular, fans felt that Luke’s cantankerous, cynical attitude was out of character for the beloved protagonist, and they really didn’t appreciate the fact [major spoiler alert!] that he died at the movie’s end—even if it was by peacefully disappearing into the Force while looking at the sunset.
Johnson has been politely shutting down the haters ever since the movie came out, and his latest clapback may be his greatest one yet.
Last week, a fan dug up an old interview with George Lucas, in which Lucas said he would never kill Luke because it would alienate the audience. “This is a fairytale. You want everybody to live happily ever after and nothing bad happens to anybody. The whole emotion I am trying to get at the end of the film is for you to be real uplifted, emotionally and spiritually, and feel absolutely good about life,” he said.
— SYNCHRONIC DESIGN (@SYNCHRONICDSGN) June 20, 2018
The fan put the interview up on Twitter with the caption, “The difference between George Lucas and Rian Johnson.” Ouch.
On Wednesday, however, Johnson himself responded with a fairly savage series of screenshots featuring various characters who were killed or maimed in the original trilogy and prequels.
The fan replied by thanking him for his response, but arguing that his “main gripes are that you abandoned the spirit and heart of Star Wars in favor of your own ideas, opinions, and mindset, rather than continuing a 40-year legacy. Skywalker and the rest of almost every thing in the film subverted all that was.” Harsh!
I appreciate the response Rian, my main gripes are that you abandoned the spirit and heart of Star Wars in favour of your own ideas, opinions, and mindset, rather than continuing a 40 year legacy. Skywalker and the rest of almost every thing in the film subverted all that was.
— SYNCHRONIC DESIGN (@SYNCHRONICDSGN) June 27, 2018
Luckily, Johnson had a firm but polite response to that as well.
“For me TLJ 100% distills what the spirit&heart of SW has been in my life. But yes it is personal, it’s a certain pov, and it has to be—originals were personal for GL, that’s why they’re alive. SW films will truly betray the heart&spirit of the originals if they lose that, and become soulless clean homages. But being alive means being messy, and it means every film won’t line up exactly with what every fan is expecting or wants. I’m sorry TLJ didn’t line up with your own certain POV, really, honestly I am. MTFBWY [May the Force Be With You].”
For me TLJ 100% distills what the spirit&heart of SW has been in my life. But yes it is personal, it’s a certain pov, and it has to be – originals were personal for GL, that’s why they’re alive. SW films will truly betray the heart&spirit of the originals if they lose that,
— Rian Johnson (@rianjohnson) June 27, 2018
They may not have reached an agreement, but the exchange is actually a pretty rare and great example of how to have a civilized debate on social media. Now, can someone please explain this major plot hole in regards to Obi-Wan Kenobi’s robe?
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