Divisive ‘Star Wars’ Director Rian Johnson Revisits ‘The Last Jedi’

Half a decade has passed since Rian Johnson Star Wars The directorial debut caused utter chaos in the galaxy far, far away. The much-discussed follow-up to Lucasfilm’s first effort under the leadership of President Kathleen Kennedy and The Walt Disney Company, Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens (2015), was criticized for its story, characters, use of legacy characters, and more.

This September, Johnson will again visit Star Wars: Episode VIII — The Last Jedi (2017) in what promises to be a “deep dive” I wish into the machinations of the film, the post-release controversy, and its existence in the Star Wars fanaticism today.

Credit: Lucas film

Related: Rian Johnson Literally Forgot A Lived ‘Star Wars’ Character, Actress’s Career Cut Short

The Walt Disney Company acquired Lucasfilm in 2012, and three years later the long-awaited sequel trilogy began. This time it wasn’t George Lucas who was in charge or wielding the pen, but JJ Abrams, and instead of the famous trio of Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), Han Solo (Harrison Ford), and Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher), it was King from Daisy Ridley, John Boyega’s Finn and Oscar Isaac’s Resistance pilot Poe Dameron.

the force awakens it went on to earn over $1 billion at the worldwide box office and ushered in what was meant to be a time of celebration for Star Wars fans with the continuation of the beloved Skywalker Saga, ten years after the end of the prequel trilogy with STar Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith (2005).

Daisy Ridley as King
Credit: Lucas film

Although, it wouldn’t be. What happened next sent a fissure through the fandom, and Johnson the last jedi It remains one of the most controversial films of recent times. Critics loved it, while fans overwhelmingly panned the sequel, even going so far as to call it an update to the trilogy.

The film delved into the inner workings of the Force, showcasing abilities never before seen in Star Wars live action. From General Leia saving herself from the void of space to a Force-projected Luke Skywalker taking on Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) on Crait, and Ren and Rey’s blossoming connection, Johnson made big changes in the last jedi – and mostly failed.

Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) dueling with Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill)
Credit: Lucas film

Sure, there are presumably legions of fans backing Johnson. Star Wars film as one of the most original feature films in the Saga, but it would seem like Abrams’ return to the franchise after replacing jurassic world (2015) director Colin Trevorrow would grind the last jedi on the ground dusted with red, isolating the film even more than before.

Star Wars: Episode IX — The Rise of Skywalker (2019) apparently aimed to gloss over the stories set in the last jedi, almost completely eliminating his place in the sequel trilogy. Instead of building on the hidden young Jedi seen in Johnson’s film, and giving audiences a new big bad, the rise of skywalker brought Ian McDiarmid’s Emperor Palpatine, and the Death Star, back from the dead along with entirely new components like the Sith Eternal, the planet Exegol, and the Emperor’s cloning facility; yes, Supreme Leader Snoke was just a failed Palpatine vessel.

Ian McDiarmid as Palpatine in Exegol
Credit: Lucas film

Five years after his Star Wars debut, Johnson will revisit his film in a world exclusive next month. EmpireThe September issue will include an in-depth look at Johnson’s knives out (2018) sequel, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery (2022), complete with Daniel Craig’s Benoit Blanc on the cover. And although the follow-up knives out is a Hollywood hot topic, Johnson will also “dig deeper” into his Star Wars past. The issue’s synopsis reads, in part:

Not only that, but we celebrate Johnson’s entire career thus far, with a major new dive into the legacy of Star Wars: Episode VIII: The Last Jedi, now half a decade old, and a photographic journey through Brick , Looper, Breaking Bad and more with Johnson’s own archive of on-set snapshots.

in what capacity the last jedi will be explored is unknown, but fans can find out when the issue is resolved on September 1.

Rian Johnson and Chris Evans on the set of 'Knives Out'
Credit: Lionsgate

Related: After Losing Two Seasons, ‘Star Wars’ Longest Live-Action Series May Cut Even Further

It looks like hate the last jediand the Star Wars the sequels as a whole have been watered down likely due to the current production of the franchise on Disney+. John Favreau and Dave Filoni the mandalorian starring Pedro Pascal has partially healed the craters left by the sequel trilogy, as has the Star Wars: The bad batch, boba fett bookY Obi Wan Kenobi. Lucasfilm’s smorgasbord of streaming content has put the wampas at bay, but it’s only time until fans yearn for a return to the big screen.

Pedro Pascal as The Mandalorian
Credit: Lucas film

And even though Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy said movies have been on the agenda all along, both Patty Jenkins movies rogue squad and untitled Taika Waititi Star Wars project, they have had no promising updates.

Will you be reading this Rian Johnson deep dive this September? Let us know in the comments below!

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