Star Wars: JJ Abrams Says Rian Johnson’s Last Jedi Choices Were ‘Weirdly Beneficial’ For The Rise Of Skywalker

Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker

by Ben Travis |
Published on

After picking up the reins from J.J. AbramsStar Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens, Rian Johnson made some bold choices for Episode VIII – The Last Jedi. He sliced Supreme Leader Snoke in two, had Rey discover (for now) that her parents were mere “filthy junk traders”, and had Luke Skywalker become one with the Force by the closing credits – moves that proved thrilling, fascinating and earned to some viewers, and not so popular with others. In taking over again for Episode IX – The Rise Of Skywalker, Abrams found Johnson’s surprising decisions to be a positive force in shaping the end of the Sequel Trilogy

“Even some of the things that happened in Episode VIII that at the time I thought, ‘Oh, that’s an interesting choice I would not have made,’ weirdly ended up being beneficial for this film,” he tells Empire in the upcoming Star Wars issue. “I feel like we’re doing the best we can to sort of excavate what is inevitable. Some of the things I like the most wouldn’t have happened if I had to make all those decisions back when we were doing VII. Certain things that happened in Rian’s film, and certainly all the films that preceded VII, were all inspiration for the cocktail that became Rise Of Skywalker.”

Read the full interview with Abrams and co-writer Chris Terrio in Empire’s biggest ever Star Wars issue, on sale from Thursday 28 November. Inside the mag you’ll find brand new images and insights from Episode IX, and all-new interviews with Sequel Trilogy stars Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, and Kelly Marie Tran, the legendary Anthony Daniels and Billy Dee Williams, and franchise newcomers Naomi Ackie and Keri Russell. Plus, the issue also comes with a bonus Skywalker Saga magazine – the ultimate celebration of the nine-film epic, with fresh interviews, features, archival material, and more – and a Dark Rey art card, illustrated exclusively for Empire by Rory Kurtz.

Star Wars: Rise Of Skywalker – Jan 2020 issue package

Take a closer look at the new covers and more here. Pick up the magazine on newsstands from 28 November – and prepare to take in the final chapter of the Skywalker Saga when Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker hits UK cinemas on 19 December.

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