RIAN JOHNSON AND THE POWER OF "IF"
Before the completion of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Lucasfilm chief Kathleen Kennedy was so impressed with Rian Johnson's work ethic and abilities as a filmmaker she signed him to an additional trilogy of films. This is good news for Star Wars fans because Johnson has shown he understands the saga and its themes better than almost anyone since George Lucas stepped away from the franchise.
But there are pockets of fandom who don’t agree and have been searching for any opening to say that Rian Johnson won’t be working on his trilogy. That it’s been canceled. That it’s never going to happen.
The clickbait news cycle seems to hit this story once a month and October 2019 is no exception. Rian Johnson has been hitting the press circuit hard for Knives Out, which has been a critical darling so far.
On a red carpet, he had this exchange:
In it, he says he’s still working with Lucasfilm, but he’d be “thrilled if it happens.” And it’s that one word — "if" — that has thrown the clickbait journalists of the world into a tizzy.
In his interactions, Johnson seems a humble guy who doesn’t count his porg eggs before they’re hatched and who has been on the press trail for a month. But some fans and journalists are caught up on the word "if." Did he mean "when"? Did he misspeak? At every opportunity he’s had, including this one, he’s confirmed he’s still working with Lucasfilm, so I think reports that his trilogy is somehow in doubt are over-exaggerated.
At this point, he’s still contracted to do a trilogy. He’s still working on it (while working on his own stuff). And, while anything can change because nothing is set in stone, we can assume that Johnson is still working on his standalone Star Wars trilogy it until he says otherwise.
THE SON OF ACKBAR
The newest issue of Marvel Comics’ Star Wars: Allegiance, one of the Journey to The Rise of Skywalker titles, offers us an introduction to the son of Admiral Ackbar. Ackbar was a fan-favorite character despite mere minutes of screen time in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and The Last Jedi.
Now, the good admiral's son, Aftab, is joining the fight.
It’s a logical thought that the remnants of the Resistance would head to Mon Cala to garner the support of the Mon Calamari people and it would make sense that Ackbar left relatives behind. Be wary of anyone saying this is some sort of reaction to fans for not appreciating the noble death Johnson gave Admiral Ackbar found in The Last Jedi. This is a pretty standard bit of storytelling, doubly so in this era of films all about the next generation taking over. Don’t read too much into it.
Will he appear in The Rise of Skywalker?
Maybe. Maybe not. But that doesn't mean anything to this bit of storytelling and dot-connecting.
ANTHONY DANIELS DOESN’T BELIEVE IN THE BOYCOTT
Anthony Daniels was in France promoting his new book I Am C-3PO: The Inside Story where he was asked about the reaction to fans that might be boycotting The Rise of Skywalker. Although his answer is in French, the gist of it is clear: He doesn’t buy it.
LRM Online translated the quote from French and Daniels seems completely unconvinced that anyone will skip the film and feels that the film is, in his words, magnificent.
“Everyone, every fan, every person, will feel addressed because it’s something for the world. It exists in every family— parents, grandparents, and children. Three generations. It’s something to share," he said. "Maybe you love the Dark side, or the other aspects, the feminine, the masculine, there is a rapport and something in there for everyone.”
If you speak French and want to watch the interview, it’s here:
STAR WARS RESISTANCE
Sunday sees the continuation of Star Wars Resistance and I want to tell you that you shouldn’t miss it. Here’s the preview that was released.
This episode happens shortly after the opening scenes of The Last Jedi and fills in details about what happens after the First Order and the Resistance leave D’Qar. The show is also promising a wider view of the tyranny from the First Order as it takes over the galaxy. It's also already moving so fast that we’ll be at The Rise of Skywalker in no time. Don’t sleep on this show!
New episodes air on Sundays on Disney XD and the Disney Channel.
Freddie Prinze, Jr., is a huge Star Wars fan. He’s been a fan since before he got the part of the Jedi Kanan Jarrus on Star Wars Rebels. He took to a podcast this week to talk about things and unloaded a rant about Star Wars you’re not going to want to miss.
Warning: it's NSFW.
Until next week: May the Force be with you!