Rian Johnson is continuing his press tour for The Last Jedi and he is also continuing to explain his choices that he made because some Star Wars fans have a lot of questions about the final cut. One of the characters that fans wondered about was Captain Phasma. She was barely shown in J.J. Abrams' The Force Awakens and many fans expected that The Last Jedi would contain more of her. Obviously, that was not the case and now Rian Johnson explains that she was never going to have a large part in the story, much like Snoke's backstory. There are SPOILERS for The Last Jedi ahead, read at your own risk.
As it turns out, Rian Johnson never had the intention to make Captain Phasma a larger part of The Last Jedi, instead she's used to continue Finn's story arc as opposed to her own. Gwendoline Christie's Phasma was rumored to have a bigger part and she even teased it in interviews, but that might have been to throw fans off. Now, we're left with another mystery to see if she survived the events of The Last Jedi. When talking about the role of Captain Phasma, Rian Johnson reiterates that she was never going to be a large part of the movie. He explains.
"...Phasma supports Finn's storyline, obviously, and there just... until she shows up to fight him at the end, look through the story that we have, there's just not a lot of space to go into a big Phasma storyline in it."
The main reason that we didn't get more of Captain Phasma on the big screen was because there were just too many characters and there wasn't a lot of time to explore another character in the 150-minute movie. The same can be said for Supreme Leader Snoke. Many fans expected to see more of his backstory along with the rise of the First Order, but again, there wasn't time and Snoke was there for Kylo Ren's storyline. Rian Johnson had this to say.
"I mean, as you can see, man, we had a really full movie already. We had a big, big movie with a lot of characters we were trying to serve, and the God's honest truth is, every character had to find their natural place."
By the looks of things, we probably won't see Captain Phasma in Star Wars 9, but you never know. She did make it back from the trash compactor from The Force Awakens, so anything is possible. Star Wars fans were expecting more from her, but Rian Johnson decided to do something completely different than what anybody expected, but we seem to have lost track of some characters that we expected to learn more about.
The Last Jedi is currently cleaning up at the box office, despite the negative fan reception and has already earned over $500 million in less than a week worldwide. Part of that negative reaction comes from advertising characters and not exploring them any further than J.J. Abrams did in The Force Awakens, but it makes sense in the overall grand scheme of things. Even the bit players in The Last Jedi are cared about and in some cases, even more than the main characters. You can read more about what Rian Johnson had to say about Captain Phasma's role in The Last Jedi via IGN.