Everyone can breath a sigh of relief, at least for a little bit. Jar Jar Binks will probably never appear in a future Star Wars movie, even a spinoff that takes place within the prequel timeline. At least not played by the actor that originated the Gungun in Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace. Ahmed Best has confirmed that he is 100% done with the character. Here's what he had to say to Jamie Stangroom on the Youtube series These Are the Actors You are Looking For. Asked if he would ever return, the actor is quite adamant.
"No, I think I've done my damage. I'm good with where I stand in the Star Wars universe. I don't need to be back. [If I was asked], I would say no. I'm not interested in coming back. I did what I did and I thought it was great. I thought it was fun. And now I think it's time to move on."
Many feared that Star Wars: The Force Awakens would bring forth another Jar Jar Binks-like character, a new alien or human that is hated by fans. But that didn't really happen. Certain people have a problem with various individuals in the movie, but there is not one singular force that has caught the kind of heat Jar Jar Binks did back in the day. The Criticism still hurts Ahmed Best. But it didn't mean he was any less excited about seeing the new sequel. He explains his pain as such.
"It didn't put me off Star Wars. But, yeah, it was painful. This character, for me, and one of the biggest reason I took it, was because it hadn't been done before. There was no Andy Serkis as Gollum. There was no Na'vi from Avatar. There were no Martians from John Carter. There was no template for this, so I was working with George to pioneer this new character form of acting and storytelling. On set, we were so focused on the challenge of it, and having so much fun, that the post-Star Wars stuff was a surprise for everyone. I was surprised by [the backlash]."
He goes onto explain that he did take the attacks personally. And he's never really gotten over it. Which explains why he isn't too eager to reprise Jar Jar anytime soon. He did come back to voice the character in the hit animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars. And he even spoofed his character in the long-delayed Star Wars Detours, an animated comedy set within the Star Wars universe that may never see the light of day, as it was set to debut before Disney bought Lucasfilm. Asked if he's still hurt over all the bad reviews, he says this.
"Yeah, a little bit. Even though you sometimes play characters, you do put a lot of your own personality into it. And you get emotionally and personally invested in it. It's your work, and you take pride in your work, like, dare I say, any craftsman. So when your work is criticized, you feel a little bit of a hit."
You can check out the rest of Ahmed Best's interview in the embed below. He goes onto discuss how Michael Jackson originally wanted the role. And he even performs his former co-star Liam Neeson's famous 'Taken' monologue, in the style of Jar Jar! You don't want to miss that!