Rian Johnson Talks Star Wars: The Last Jedi

There is no doubt that Star Wars: The Last Jedi was a success at the box office and one of the more divisive Star Wars movies since the prequels and in a recent Q&A in Los Angeles, Rian Johnson talks about some of the scenes that didn’t make the movie.

After a screening of The Last Jedi earlier this past week, Rian Johnson sat down for a Q&A and talked about why certain scenes never made it to the movie and why we never got to see a funeral for one of the franchises most beloved characters.

During the Q&A Johnson talked about two scenes that were cut and why.

“There are two big sequences that are really the kind of hero pieces of it. One is a whole other big thing between Rey and Luke on the island that involves the Caretaker creatures. You see this village where the Caretakers–the Nun Fish creatures–live, and it’s a sequence that I always really loved. It’s a really beautiful sequence. It’s one of those things where … and this always happens in the edit, it’s like suddenly you can see through the Matrix and you’re like, “Oh my God, that big sequence that I love so much and I can’t imagine the movie without, if we lift it out and put these two things together, it plays in a slightly different way but it plays better.” And you just kind of have that, “::sigh:: Shit,” and you hit delete.”

Scenes with Luke and Rey weren’t the only scenes to have the ax taken to them. Some scenes with Rose and Finn were also cut.

“There’s another sequence where Rose, and Finn, and DJ are sneaking through the Mega Destroyer, which is just another really fun, funny sequence, I think. That’s another four minutes, or something. But then there’s a lot of really substantial little scenes. There are scenes with Finn that ended up getting stripped away, kind of his motivation for going out to look for Rey.”

Star Wars: The Force Awakens / Disney / 2015

In The Force Awakens one of my favorite characters in the Star Wars universe, Han Solo was killed off. A lot of fans including myself were hoping for some sort of acknowledgement of Han’s passing in The Last Jedi and even though we did not get that Rian Johnson explains why.

“[There was no debate of showing Han Solo’s funeral], just because pacing-wise it didn’t have a place. It’s tough in Star Wars because I always think about the mourning that Luke gives to Ben’s death, which is all of four-and-a-half seconds before, ‘Come on kid we’re not out of this yet’ and then boom, you’re into ‘Yay, woo-hoo! Don’t get cocky!’ There’s the moment for it, but it’s not long. We don’t have time for our sorrows, commanders. That’s kind of the thing of Star Wars; you don’t really linger on grief because you’re moving forward.”

“I think we do it a little more in this movie than typically is done. I really held onto that moment of Leia before they come out of hyperspace, just that moment of feeling the weight of the world on her shoulders… It was never something where there was an organic place for it like, ‘Oh it would go here.’ It was always something like, ‘We wanna get this right up on our feet and going from the start’.”

Even though we never got that funeral scene with Leia, Chewie and Rey morning the passing of Han we will get it when the novelization of the movie comes out in book stores on March 6th.

Reggie’s Take:
For me personally I loved The Last Jedi. I thought it did a lot of things right and I left the theater pleasantly surprised. Were there some things that could have been done better? Of course, but you could say that about most movies.

I’m very much aware the amount of hate that some fans have for The Last Jedi, maybe hate is a bit strong, maybe extremely disappointed, but never the less I had no issues with many of the decisions that were made with the story and directions they took with The Last Jedi.

I’m not going to go into many of my thoughts of The Last Jedi here. If you want to know more of my opinions and thoughts for Last Jedi you can check out my Podcast #41.


If you wish to learn more about the decisions Rian Johnson made for The Last Jedi then you go over to Collider.com and read more on his Q&A.

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