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John Boyega has Force-healed his ‘Star Wars’ wounds and could be ready for more

Could Finn return and actually do stuff this time?

John Boyega as Finn in Star Wars
Image via Lucasfilm

John Boyega, who portrayed Finn in Disney’s Star Wars sequel trilogy, didn’t have the greatest time making those films. From the jump, he was criticized for his skin color while portraying Stormtrooper FN-2187. And then he saw what was essentially a starring role in The Force Awakens diminish to a supporting one in The Last Jedi and The Rise of Skywalker. However, it looks like Boyega is now “open” to revisiting the franchise.

This is despite being pretty hard on Disney three years ago, when he made public statements such as: “What I would say to Disney is do not bring out a black character, market them to be much more important in the franchise than they are, and then have them pushed to the side.”

Boyega rightfully critiqued the situation at greater length during a 2020 interview with GQ, saying:

“I’m the only cast member who had their own unique experience of that franchise based on their race. Let’s just leave it like that. It makes you angry with a process like that. It makes you much more militant; it changes you. Because you realize, ‘I got given this opportunity but I’m in an industry that wasn’t even ready for me.’

“Nobody else in the cast had people saying they were going to boycott the movie because [they were in it]. Nobody else had the uproar and death threats sent to their Instagram DMs and social media, saying, ‘Black this, and black that, and you shouldn’t be a Stormtrooper.’ Nobody else had that experience. But yet people are surprised that I’m this way. That’s my frustration.”

The actors appears to have made peace with Disney since then. When asked by TechRadar if he would return to Star Wars now that some time has passed, Boyega answered that his previous comments on the matter were from “a few years ago, so they were the subject of that particular project.” (He likely means The Rise of Skywalker, which released in late 2019 and afforded him less than a half hour of screen time.)

Boyega added:

But I’m open to all characters and scripts that are enjoyable, have a great cast attached, and a terrific director. So yeah, I’m open to all opportunities.”

According to an April 2023 episode of The Hot Mic podcast, Lucasfilm executives are already having discussions about incorporating Finn as a co-lead in future projects starring Daisy Ridley, who portrayed series lead Rey in the sequel trilogy.

Rumor has it that Boyega and Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy have “buried the hatchet,” leading fans to hope that Finn will return in future Star Wars projects with a meatier role than he ended up having in the Skywalker Saga. Though, again, none of this is confirmed.

Personally, we’re not really sure that focusing on Rey is the right move for earning back the trust of the fanbase. But if Disney does go that route, we’d love to see Boyega reprise the role as Finn and use his Force powers for something cooler than having “a feeling” about which communication antenna to blow up next.

Boyega wearing Jedi robes and holding a lightsaber sounds great, but even giving Finn something more emotionally substantial — such as exploring his roots before the Empire kidnapped him or specializing in turning bad guys to good after the fall of the First Order — would go some ways to make up for how wasted the character was the first time around.

Boyega can be seen next in Netflix’s They Cloned Tyrone.

Matt Wayt
About the author

Matt Wayt

Matt lives in Hollywood and enjoys writing about art and the business that tries to kill it. He loves Tsukamoto and Roger Rabbit. letterboxd: wayt_what