Rian Johnson: Luke is the last Jedi in Star Wars: The Last Jedi


One of the big questions from The Force Awakens was what Luke Skywalker was doing on that island all these years, and Rian Johnson says we’ll learn the reason in Star Wars: The Last Jedi…

Director of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and potential director of Star Wars: Episode IX, Rian Johnson, recently sat down with the New York Times and spoke about The Last Jedi, and he experiences directing his first Star Wars film.

When Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy first approached Johnson to direct The Last Jedi, he hesitated and needed to time to think about it, which threw Kennedy off a bit.

ANAHEIM, CA – JULY 15: Director Rian Johnson of STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI took part today in the Walt Disney Studios live action presentation at Disney’s D23 EXPO 2017 in Anaheim, Calif.STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI will be released in U.S. theaters on December 15, 2017. (Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Disney)

She was slightly confused, I think. The next few days, I couldn’t sleep. I thought I was going to do a pros-and-cons list, but the truth is, it was more a decision from the heart. There was no way I could not do this.

Personally, I like the Johnson took a beat to think about directing a film in a juggernaut of a franchise like Star Wars. Johnson also clears up the stigma that Disney/Lucasfilm was looking over his shoulder, telling him how to direct, much like the same stigmatic rumors from the Lord and Miller departure from the Han Solo project and the recent exit of Colin Trevorrow from Episode IX.

Johnson has an odd quote about Rey and Kylo Ren, in The Last Jedi, that might make Star Wars fans take pause:

"Rey and Kylo are almost two halves of our protagonist. It’s not like Kylo is our Vader. In the original trilogy, Vader is the father — he’s the one you’re afraid of and who you want the approval of. Whereas Kylo represents anger and rebellion, the sometimes healthy — and sometimes not — desire to disconnect from the parents. It’s my favorite kind of quote-unquote bad guy because you can genuinely see what their weakness is."

Hmm, is Johnson possibly hinting at face turn for Kylo Ren in The Last Jedi? Could the acolyte of Supreme Leader Snoke be turned back to the Light by his uncle, Luke Skywalker? We won’t know until December, but Luke’s quote from the first trailer for the film is definitely worrisome: “It’s time for the Jedi to end.”

"That’s something that we’re definitely going to dig into. The heart of the movie is Luke and Rey. It follows all the other characters, but its real essence is the development of the two of them. And it’s absolutely tied up in that question of, What is Luke’s attitude toward the Jedi?"

Now, as to the question of why Luke’s been on that island on the planet of Ahch-To all these years while the First Order rose to power, Johnson says it’s not because he’s a coward trying to avoid conflict.

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"I know he’s not hiding on the island. I know he’s not a coward. He must be there for a reason that he believes in. You’re finding a path forward, but there end up being fewer choices than you think."

In that vein, Johnson does confirm Luke is the last Jedi, and it was right in our faces all along with the opening crawl of The Force Awakens.

"There’s always wiggle room in these movies — everything is from a certain point of view — but coming into our story, he is the actual last of the Jedi. And he’s removed himself and is alone on this island, for reasons unknown."

Now, everyone can stop trying to figure out who the last Jedi actually is, and move on to making horribly inaccurate theories about Snoke.

Next: Is Rian Johnson going to direct Star Wars: Episode IX?

Hopefully, we’ll find out the reasons Luke is on that island when Star Wars: The Last Jedi hits theaters on December 15.