WARNING: This article contains spoilers about ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi.’ If you don’t want any information about the movie spoiled for you, then the time to stop reading is very clearly right now!
As you undoubtedly know, ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi‘ was released in theaters this weekend, and has been so far met with, shall we say, mixed reactions. But let’s be honest – what film nowadays isn’t met with some sort of “mixed reaction?” I personally thought ‘Blade Runner 2049‘ was phenomenal, but lots of folks disliked it, so what do I know anyhow? But I digress.
Love it, hate it, or thought it was just okay, as Episode VIII, ‘The Last Jedi’ did work to answer some of the questions first posed in Episode VII, ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ – even though it left some questions infuriatingly vague or downright unanswered (seriously, though, what the Hell was up with Snoke and why did he get such a Darth Maul-esque kill-off?). One question that was seemingly answered, though, was that of who Rey’s parents are/were; as Kylo Ren tells her fairly bluntly, they were nobodies, just some random universe-dwellers. Okay, fair enough – end of story, right?
If ‘The Last Jedi’ director Rian Johnson had his way, it would be, yeah – but as he mentioned in a recent post-premiere interview, he can’t really control what ‘Star Wars: Episode IX’ co-writers JJ Abrams and Chris Terrio have planned for their movie and how Rey’s parentage may come into play there:
“I can’t speak to what they’re going to do. And there’s always, in these movies, a question of ‘a certain point of view,’ … But for me, in that moment, Kylo believes it’s the truth. I don’t think he’s purely playing chess. I think that’s what he saw when they touched fingers and that’s what he believes. And when he tells her that in that moment, she believes it.”
As for how Johnson himself came up with the idea to make Rey’s parents some seemingly random galactic citizens:
“I was thinking, what’s the most powerful answer to that question? Powerful meaning: what’s the hardest thing that Rey could hear? That’s what you’re after with challenging your characters. The easiest thing for Rey and the audience to hear is, Oh yeah, you’re so-and-so’s daughter. That would be wish fulfillment and instantly hand her a place in this story on a silver platter…The hardest thing for her is to hear she’s not going to get that easy answer. Not only that, but Kylo is going to use the fact that you don’t get that answer to try and weaken you so you have to lean on him.”
Fans will have at least a few more years to ponder/debate what the true answer to Rey’s parentage might be.
‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ is in movie theaters now.