While many a YouTuber has garnered an impressive following by offering their thoughts and theories on the biggest franchises in film and TV, most of these video-makers probably don’t expect the major creators of these franchises to hit back when the speculation isn’t so flattering. But not only did The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson do just that, but his assessment of theory-loving Star Wars fan Mike Zeroh was about as harsh as it gets.
Last year, Johnson’s film had a polarizing effect on the fanbase, and with the filmmaker taking so much heat for his provocative entry in the Star Wars saga, perhaps it isn’t too surprising that rumors have been circulating that the director might be retiring from the series before he can get round to helming his own planned trilogy.
Though Johnson was quick to shoot down this speculation in response to a recent tweet, he later offered a longer and more passionate follow-up when he found out who one of the sources of the speculation was.
“Wait. Hahahahahaha this is all because of Zeroh? HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. When we were in production we had a guy keeping an eye on online rumors. At some point we started using “Zeroh” as a verb. Like, “throws trash at basket, but it slips out of your hand and falls behind you.” “Zeroh’d it.”
Ouch. Apparently even Johnson felt a little remorseful about this derisive comment because he quickly deleted it, though not before some witnesses managed to take a screenshot.
This little incident is just the latest demonstration of how contentious a subject Star Wars has become in these last few years. But before Johnson can bring us his trilogy-long take on the property, Episode IX is still on the way, and the pressure’s on for J.J. Abrams and his team to bring us something that fans and creators alike can agree upon.