Published On: Fri, Jan 13th, 2017

Director Rian Johnson on ‘Star War 8’: Luke and Rey are key, dealing with her gift, what they do next

Writer/Director Rian Johnson has not said much about his upcoming film Star Wars Episode 8, but as part of a 2017 preview, Johnson talked briefly with USA Today and teased the plot for Star Wars Episode 8.

“I don’t want to skip ahead two years. I want to see the very next moment of what happens,” said the Looper director.

Especially considering the end to Force Awakens, Rey (Daisy Ridley) and Luke (Mark Hamill) relating to each other is the key relationship in Episode VIII, and Johnson says “a large part of the movie” as well as addressing why Luke’s there and what he’ll do next.

Like Luke, Rey has been pulled into a bigger world by connecting with the Force, “but part of what’s she’s dealing with is the realization that she has this power and this gift,” Johnson adds. “She’s taking her first step to coming to terms with this thing inside her that she never knew was there and is just starting to reveal its potential.”

Star Wars 8 will obviously begin on Ahch-to, the planet that we find Luke Skywalker on at the conclusion of The Force Awakens. Slash Film says that Johnson’s remarks make this more interesting.

“But the interesting thing here is that Johnson says that a large part of his movie will be spent addressing why Luke’s there and what he’ll do next. Why did Luke Skywalker seek out this ancient Jedi temple? Was he there is waiting for someone like Rey to present themselves? Or did he put himself in exile for more dramatic reasons?”


Adam Driver’s Kylo Ren will be the mirror opposite of Rey in the new film and the star spoke about what his central to his character in the film.

“I think – maybe this is such a general answer but you know – humanity. Even though it’s very much a blockbuster movie, there was no taking that for granted and that we were forced to be general. There was a lot of plot points that we knew were operating in the first one, that we get to explain more in the second one, to make both of them make sense.”

Carrie Fisher, John Boyega, Lupita Nyong’o, Andy Serkis and Oscar Isaac will return to reprise their respective roles.

Star Wars: Episode 8 opens on December 15, 2017.

The next film, Episode 9 will follow in the footsteps the franchise’s traditional Memorial Day release schedule, opening on May 23, 2019.


John Boyea and Daisy Ridley

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