Even though many are expecting director J.J. Abrams to possibly do a bit of retconning in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, we have reason to believe that may not be the case. Or, at the very least, anything that seems like a retcon of what was done by Rian Johnson in The Last Jedi may, more or less, have been part of the plan all along. This, according to Kylo Ren actor Adam Driver.
In a recent, rather revealing cover story previewing Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, Adam Driver discussed Kylo Ren's character arc that started in 2015 with The Force Awakens. The evildoer formerly known as Ben Solo came a long way in The Last Jedi, divisive as the movie may have been. He's now effectively in control of the First Order and there are a lot of questions in regards to how things will end up with him. Can Kylo be redeemed? Will he die? Will he get together with Rey somehow? Whatever ends up happening, it will have been part of the long term plan. Here's what Driver had to say.
"An overall arc was very, not vague, the opposite, it was very clear [there was] an end in sight even from the very beginning. The details obviously hadn't been worked out, but we had talked about the very thing that we'd been working towards with this last one."
Here's why that is crucial. Kylo Ren is one of the key figures of this new trilogy, alongside Daisy Ridley's Rey. As such, knowing that his character arc was mapped out means that at least some of the major story beats for the entire trilogy had to be mapped out. That runs contrary to some of what we've heard in the past.
Given the aforementioned divisive response to The Last Jedi, some expected that J.J. Abrams and Lucasfilm would do some course correction this time around. Specifically, they may distance themselves from certain things set up in that movie, like perhaps revealing that Rey's parents were more than nobody junk traders, for example. In the same piece, Abrams had nothing but nice things to say about Rian Johnson's approach and, what's further, it actually encouraged the way he approached Episode IX.
"Having seen what Rian did made me approach this from a place of instinct and gut. I was making choices I knew I would not have made on VII, some story-wise, but more in terms of directing. I found myself feeling less like I'm going to try and do something that feels like it's [only] true to the specifics of this franchise or the story."
While much of what we're going to see remains a mystery, it's clear there was, to some degree, a vague plan. Even the whole Palpatine surprise was apparently not just something that came up at the last minute. We'll have to see how this all shakes out, but it's interesting to know there may have been more synergy behind the scenes than previously expected. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is set to hit theaters on December 20. This news was first reported by Vanity Fair.