The Last Jedi Director Looked To The Prequels When Crafting Kylo Ren’s Final Moments On Crait

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Holographic dice in hand, Kylo Ren watches as the Millennium Falcon blasts into outer space, leaving plumes of dust and reddish salt in its wake.

Sound familiar? It’s part of The Last Jedi‘s blistering finale, as Kylo, having been rightly duped by Luke Skywalker, stands in silence, quietly plotting his next move. It’s one that won’t begin to unfurl until Episode IX enters production later this year, but to ensure the impassioned Star Wars fanbase has plenty to chew over, writer-director Rian Johnson has weighed in on Kylo’s final scene on Crait, and why he looked to the prequels while writing one of the character’s quieter moments.

While partaking in a recent IMAX Q&A (h/t ComicBook.com), Johnson was asked about the mixed emotions coursing through Kylo’s mind as he watches the Falcon escape, and said the following:

That is such a great question. Will you be mad if I said that it’s such a great question, I don’t want to answer it? Only because I think that’s such a beautiful notion of ‘what does he regret in that moment,’ it’s the same way I think about in Revenge of the Sith, that mask is coming down, that beautiful shot of Anakin’s eyes right before it goes over and you see that glimpse of… Is it fear? Is it regret? What is it? What is going through his mind at that moment? That’s that kind of moment for Ben and I don’t want to put that moment in your guys’ head. I feel like that’s a moment that everyone should read into themselves. But just posing that question is really beautiful.

His reference point? The Star Wars prequels, as it turns out. To his credit, Rian Johnson has always been pretty forthcoming about delving into the franchise’s rich archives to mine inspiration for his characters, and sure enough, Kylo’s finale in The Last Jedi bears some semblance to Revenge of the Sith.

I watched the prequels a lot actually, and that goes for the writing and while we were in prep. I think partially because the original trilogy was the ones that I know by heart, shot for shot. The prequels – I knew them really well but I saw them less so I kind of wanted to steep myself in that visual language a lot more before I got into it.

In closing, Johnson drew attention to the interwoven nature of Lucasfilm’s crown jewel, which isn’t all that surprising given J.J. Abrams and screenwriter Chris Terrio (Justice League) plan to reference all three sagas in the forthcoming Episode IX.

The notion of finding echoes, not just in the original trilogy but also in the prequel trilogy felt like just a really rich well to draw from. So I kept the original trilogy and also the prequels just on my iPad that I had with me all the time and at night I would just put it on in a random spot and watch pieces of it.

The Last Jedi made its bow in December of last year and has since scored $1.3 billion worldwide. In other news relating to Lucasfilm’s far-away galaxy, Good Morning American plans to unveil the first full trailer for Solo: A Star Wars Story on the morning after Super Bowl LII. Keep your peepers peeled and blasters ready.

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