Rian Johnson is on a well-deserved victory lap after the global success of Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, though his heart clearly still lies in a galaxy far, far away. He’s repeatedly said he wants to return to Star Wars to finally make his long-in-development movie trilogy, and indications are that Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy’s door is open to him.
If he did return, then expect controversy, as many fans are still sore about 2017’s The Last Jedi. In an interview earlier this week, Johnson attempted to explain how he wanted to make “a movie” rather than simply a piece of intellectual property, saying “I love an ending where you burn the Viking boat into the sea.”
Fans have been busily debating this, and whether it means he was the best pick for the middle entry in the sequel trilogy:
The top reply says the real problem with the sequel trilogy was a lack of an overall vision, as well as letting J.J. Abrams and Rian Johnson do whatever they wanted:
The counterpoint is that The Rise of Skywalker is clearly Disney and Lucasfilm trying to backpedal away from The Last Jedi in a misguided attempt to mollify fans:
Maybe deciding the trilogy’s story ahead of time would have been for the best:
Is this more Kathleen Kennedy struggling to work with directors (see also the nightmare productions of Rogue One and Solo):
Perhaps Johnson was the wrong choice for this particular movie:
We suspect his “burn it down” philosophy might have worked better for Episode IX:
But maybe the whole enterprise was doomed from the start:
Disney’s sequel trilogy is destined to go down as one of the biggest missed opportunities in cinematic history. Regardless of your opinions on each individual chapter, it’s sad that they didn’t manage to get Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, and Carrie Fisher in a single scene together, and the disastrous The Rise of Skywalker left a bad taste in the mouth about the whole affair.
The silver lining is that Disney and Lucasfilm seem to have learned from these mistakes, with the Disney Plus shows (particularly Andor) proving that great Star Wars content is possible under the right circumstances.
We’d still love to see Johnson return to Star Wars, though giving him a trilogy outside the Skywalker Saga is absolutely the smartest way to proceed.