One point of contention from “Star Wars” fans is that Emporer Palpatine is returning. While almost everyone loves the idea, there have been quite a few complaints that Ian McDiarmid returning to reprise his role wasn’t even hinted at in ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens‘ or ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi.’ When you stop to analyze it, the entire idea feels like it is coming out of thin air.
Not so according to director J.J. Abrams saying, “Well, when you look at this as nine chapters of a story, perhaps the weirder thing would be if Palpatine didn’t return.”
Palpatine did orchestrate the entire fall of the Republic and the rise of the Empire. He is also directly responsible for the Skywalker bloodline’s importance in this galaxy far, far away. So in one respect, this is very true. The director would go on to explain:
“You just look at what he talks about, who he is, how important he is, what the story is — strangely, his absence entirely from the third trilogy would be conspicuous. It would be very weird. That’s not to say there was a bible, and we knew what happens at every step. But when Larry Kasdan and I worked on ‘The Force Awakens,’ we didn’t do it in a vacuum. We very purposely looked at what came before. We chose to tell a story that touches upon specific things and themes and ideas that we’ve seen before, to begin a new story. But we examined all that came before to ask where does this feel like it’s going?
So there were discussions about that at the time. Yet, like any beginning, you want to put the threads in, but you don’t want to necessarily be literal about everything. And then when Rian was brought on to do ‘The Last Jedi,’ we met, and we talked about things, and he wrote his story. And when I read it the script, I realized this didn’t get in the way of anything Larry and I talked about that I thought I’d get to. There were some very specific things we did get to do in this movie that we were laughing and going, “Oh my god, we’re finally doing that thing we talked about five years ago.”
While Abrams and Kasdan appeared to have an idea about Palpatine’s return, it really doesn’t feel as if fans got any hints that it was going to happen. There’s always a chance when ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker‘ hits the big screen that everything will be revealed to be connected in a mindblowing and surprising way.
Are you thrilled that The Emporer is back for ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’? Do you feel that there was any groundwork laid for his return in the previous two films? Share your thoughts in the comments below!