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Johnson said he knew early on that “The Last Jedi” was going to revolve around Skywalker’s journey to take on the “mantle of the legend of Luke Skywalker,” despite the fact that the disillusioned Jedi had rejected that characterization earlier in the film.
“The galaxy needs legends,” Johnson explained. “I think about the look in Rey’s eyes in ‘The Force Awakens,’ when she says, ‘Luke Skywalker, I thought he was a myth,’ and that gleam in her eyes. And I think about how I felt when I showed up to work the first day to meet with Mark Hamill, and I sat down and started talking to him, and I could only see Luke Skywalker. He made it very hard to talk, and [it’s] the idea that there’s value in that, in terms of inspiring us to fight the good fight and to be our best.”
Johnson was candid about Luke’s “death scene,” saying he was actually “dreading” it. But if it was going to happen, it had to be then, he argued.
“When I realized that that’s where Luke was going to get to by the end of the movie, and when I realized this was gonna be an emotionally rich arc for him, it seemed like if there was a time to give him his moment, this would be it,” Johnson said. “I wasn’t looking forward to it. I was kind of dreading it, but at the same time it felt like the right moment. It felt like the right time in this trilogy.”
And though Johnson isn’t writing the next film — that duty goes to J.J. Abrams and Chris Terrio — he did talk about how Skywalker could possibly “now do more for the galaxy in another form.”
Johnson said, “The idea of Luke having passed into another realm and what the potential could be there for his involvement, that seems like it just gives you a whole other realm to get into if [Abrams and Terrio] chose to in the next film.”
- This article originally appeared on HuffPost.
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