The Six Films that Influenced Rian Johnson with Star Wars: Episode VIII

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During Star Wars Celebration Europe, director Rian Johnson revealed six films that helped influence his decisions with filming and creating the story of Star Wars: Episode VIII…

During last week’s Star Wars Celebration in London, England, Star Wars: Episode VIII director Rian Johnson revealed that he asked the cast and crew of the of Episode VIII to watch six films, before they actually began shooting the first scenes.

Here’s a list of the six-films Johnson included on the list, and how one could possibly shape the narrative of Star Wars: Episode VIII:

Twelve O’Clock High (1949)

Synopsis: “Convinced an air force commander (Gary Merrill) is at the breaking point, Brigadier General Savage (Peck) takes over his struggling bomber group. Kind and understanding, he adopts a crushing discipline to revitalize the demoralized troop. At first resentful and rebellious, the flyers gradually change as Savage guides them to amazing feats. But the stress of command soon takes it’s toll and the weary general reaches his own breaking point.”

One’s first inclination is that this film is on the list simply to influence the story for General Leia’s Resistance, in Episode VIII

And that would probably be a correct guess, as there was a supposed scene leak from roughly five-months ago, that described Laura Dern’s character as a high-ranking officer in the Resistance, who takes over after Leia is grievously injured. She’s not a popular choice, and she and Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac) clash, initially.

With her husband, Han Solo, being murdered at the hands of her own son, Kylo Ren, and with the Hosnian System completely destroyed by the First Order, in The Force Awakens, General Leia could be at her breaking point.

With Rian Johnson saying that this film had the most influence on Star Wars: Episode VIII, perhaps we are looking at the framework for Laura Dern’s role and how the rest of the Resistance reacts to her, in the film.

Next: The Bridge on the River Kwai