After all, both films were angled as the middle chapter in their respective trilogies, while also revolving around a hopeful student (Rey/Luke Skywalker) seeking the wisdom and training of a Jedi Master (Luke Skywalker/Yoda). The parallels don’t end there, of course, as IGN’s Scott Collura has dug a little deeper beneath the surface to uncover some connective tissue linking The Last Jedi‘s Rose Tico with Empire Strikes Back – and, more specifically, its director Irvin Kershner.
It all stems from Rose’s line to Finn, after the Resistance mechanic tells FN-2187 that they can still win the war “not by fighting what we hate, but saving what we love.” Well, it seems Kershner was quoted as saying something similar all those years ago.
If nothing else, it’s a neat callback to the original Star Wars trilogy, and further proof that Rian Johnson is a super-fan just like you and I – hell, he even welcomed the debate that threatened to consume The Last Jedi shortly after release.
Here’s evidence of that callback, courtesy of Twitter:
Remember what Rose said in @rianjohnson’s The Last Jedi about winning the war not by fighting what we hate, but saving what we love? Here’s director Irvin Kershner while filming Empire Strikes Back… pic.twitter.com/INTFj3JI4z
— Scott Collura (@ScottCollura) February 28, 2018
And if there’s one Star Wars film that deserves to be cherished, it’s The Empire Strikes Back. First released all the way back in 1980, Irvin Kershner’s blockbuster sequel was a storytelling masterclass filled with spectacle and unforgettable moments, along with the instantly recognizable “I am your father” line – arguably one of the greatest twists in modern cinema.
It’s a legacy that was clearly woven into the fabric of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, too, which is now fast approaching its launch on Blu-ray and DVD. March 27th is the date for your diaries.