Inspiration in life can drift in from myriad directions, and in the visual realm of filmmaking, creators often turn to the grand legacy of Hollywood or International films to provide a grounding template for their screen projects.
The newly christened Star Wars: The Last Jedi, captained by Looper's Rian Johnson, is set to strike this December, and the writer/director has shared his personal list of three movies that struck him as particularly relevant to his vision of the upcoming Star Wars sequel.
Johnson's guiding stars include an interesting array of classic cinema titles that helped influence his directorial decisions in writing and crafting this follow-up to The Force Awakens. Here's what Johnson had to say in a recent interview with Empire:
"Twelve O'Clock High (1949) was a big touchstone, for the feel and look of the aerial combat as well as the dynamic between the pilots. Three Outlaw Samurai (1964) for the feel of the sword-fighting, and the general sense of pulpy fun. And To Catch A Thief (1955) was a great film to rewatch, for the romantic scale and grandeur."
This trio of movies form an intriguing window into the mind's eye of Johnson and his intentions with his space opera. Star Wars films require a delicate balance of humor, pathos, empathy, romance, action and sci-fi spectacle, and it's nice to know The Last Jedi's director has a competent plan to give his unique offering to the saga a particular style and sheen.
Here are the trailers to all three movies on Rian Johnson's short list to absorb and admire.