Rian Johnson explains why we did not see the Knights of Ren in Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi was an action-packed, wild ride of excitement, leaving fans breathless in the process. The movie contained a little bit of everything — epic space battles, unique lightsaber duels, new intricacies of the Force, and many surprises along the way.
However, one glaring omission was the absence of the mysterious Knights of Ren, who fans expected to see or at least have a mention of in The Last Jedi. Naturally, we received neither, leaving us wondering where in the galaxy they could be hiding.
Director/writer of The Last Jedi, Rian Johnson’s recent appearance on the Empire podcast, dives headfirst into questions on the Knights of Ren.
"We have a very full movie already there literally was just not room for another element…"
It’s hard to argue the fullness of The Last Jedi, the longest Star Wars film to date. But, it would have been nice to have a brief mention of the secret Dark Side sect. However, Johnson counters that very argument, saying it had no place within his story arc.
"I could’ve used them in place of the Praetorian guards but then it would feel like wasting them because all those guards had to die. And if Kylo had some kind of connection to them it would’ve added a complication that wouldn’t have helped the scene."
Fair enough, Mr. Johnson. Now, that statement leaves open the possibility of their survival, one that J.J. Abrams could easily implement into Episode IX.
What do we know about the Knights of Ren? Not a whole, to be honest. We only see them briefly in Rey’s Force-back vision, accompanying Kylo Ren’s slaughter of an unknown clan. Supreme Leader Snoke calls Kylo Ren a “Master of the Knights of Ren,” but that’s all he mentions about them.
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Also in the Star Wars canon novel trilogy Aftermath, a Dark Side group of Darth Vader worshipers, known as the Acolytes of the Beyond could very well be an early manifestation of the Knights of Ren, but there aren’t enough details to confirm or deny their actual connection.
It’s possible that this growing group of Dark Side and Vader fanboys hear of Ben Solo’s bloodline connection to the Skywalker line, where they turn their worship to the seed of Vader. Or, the Knights of Ren may very well be the handful of Jedi that left with Solo upon destroying Luke Skywalker’s Jedi Temple.
There’s also a chance it could be a mix of both parties, thickening the plot even more. Hopefully, we will find out in a venue of Star Wars canon content very soon. Or, likely, Episode IX will flush out the Knights of Ren to our satisfaction.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is playing in theatres, worldwide. If you’re looking for a glimpse of the Knights of Ren in the movie, you won’t find them — except for their leader, Kylo Ren.