Rian Johnson Defends His Version of Luke Skywalker Amid Re-Stoked Criticisms
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is officially in theaters, and the debates among fans have begun over the film. Also reignited are the debates over its predecessor, The Last Jedi, which is arguably the most controversial of the nine Disney movies.
Rise had been in theaters for mere hours before Last Jedi writer-director Rian Johnson took to Twitter to rebuff claims that his version of Luke Skywalker was an unmitigated mistake.
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Johnson responded to a Twitter user who shared another fan's detailed comparison of Luke's arc from the original trilogy and his character's behavior in Last Jedi, which the fans claimed completely undercut the character.
"This is the best written explanation I've seen of how @rianjohnson completely destroys the character of #LukeSkywalker and almost derailed the franchise. Thank goodness for @bad_robot coming in and cleaning up Johnson's mess," said the Twitter user.
This is the best written explanation I've seen of how @rianjohnson completely destroys the character of #LukeSkywalker and almost derailed the franchise. Thank goodness for @bad_robot coming in and cleaning up Johnson's mess. #TheRiseOfSkywalker https://t.co/MNV5jTcr1n— Gil Gonzalez (@danaCreative) December 20, 2019
Since Johnson was tagged in the post, he saw it in his mentions and decided to respond. He was courteous, but direct.
"Gil, I understand that point of view but I completely disagree with it. In fact I think it disrespects the character of Luke by treating him not as a true mythic hero overcoming recurring wounds & flaws, but as a video game character who has achieved a binary, permanent power-up," Johnson said.
It is no secret Mark Hamill, who famously plays Luke Skywalker in the original Star Wars trilogy and in various film and television projects, including The Last Jedi, appears in Rise of Skywalker, directed and co-written by J.J. Abrams.
It is unclear if Johnson has seen Rise of Skywalker, but he did say in an interview last week that he felt any Star Wars film that pandered to fans was a "mistake."
by Pamela McClintock
by Richard Newby