Director Rian Johnson Talks The Meaning Of The Last Jedi, Says Luke And Rey Are The “Heart Of The Movie”

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The master and the apprentice.

It’s an age-old cinematic fellowship that has weaved its way into everything from The Karate Kid to Batman Begins, and come December, writer-director Rian Johnson will be placing a laser focus on the teacher-student bond brewing between Rey and Luke Skywalker.

He’s The Last Jedi, according to Johnson, who pointed to the opening crawl of The Force Awakens as evidence that Mark Hamill’s Force-wielder is, in fact, the last Jedi…for now. Indeed, the actual title of Episode VIII sparked a huge debate back in April, when Star Wars fans questioned if the moniker was being used in a singular or plural context. Turns out it’s singular in the eyes of Johnson, who spoke a little bit more about the title’s meaning with The New York Times.

It’s in the opening crawl of The Force Awakens. Luke Skywalker, right now, is the last Jedi. There’s always wiggle room in these movies — everything is from a certain point of view — but coming into our story, he is the actual last of the Jedi. And he’s removed himself and is alone on this island, for reasons unknown.

From one Star Wars enigma to another, Rian Johnson then addressed that by-now infamous piece of dialogue, “it’s time for the Jedi to end.” Of course, it was Luke Skywalker who uttered the line, presumably to Daisy Ridley’s Rey. Word is that their first exchange on Ahch-To will be a tense, steely affair, so don’t expect to The Last Jedi to dive into that master-apprentice relationship from the get-go.

Per NY Times:

It sounds pretty dire. That’s something that we’re definitely going to dig into. The heart of the movie is Luke and Rey. It follows all the other characters, but its real essence is the development of the two of them. And it’s absolutely tied up in that question of, What is Luke’s attitude toward the Jedi?

Star Wars: The Last Jedi will see a release on December 15th. Its sequel, Episode IX, recently parted ways with director Colin Trevorrow, and Rian Johnson has already been tipped as a potential replacement. Stay tuned for more.

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