Mark Hamill appeared on the Schmoes Know podcast to talk about his appearance in the Valentine's weekend release Kingsman: The Secret Service. While the iconic actor is proud of his work in this action-packed adventure, talk of course turned to Star Wars: The Force Awakens and his role as Luke Skywalker. While Mark Hamill doesn't reveal anything of great importance concerning the plot of the movie, he does hint that some of the rumors we've heard are not true. He also makes a keen distinction between the directing styles of George Lucas and J.J. Abrams, comparing them to the master and student relationship that is so prevalent in the Star Wars universe. Tred forth lightly, there will be SPOILERS ahead...
While no official plot details have ever been revealed about Star Wars: The Force Awakens, some inside sources have claimed that Jedi Master Luke Skywalker eventually gives in to the dark side to become the new villain in this third trilogy of films. When asked how he saw Luke progressing and transforming over the past thirty years, leading into Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and if his thoughts mirrored what was in the script, Mark Hamill hints that the past rumors are wrong:
"Well part of the answer to that question...Involves what I thought was the script to my final chapter. Which really surprised me. Another one for us indicated that Luke would be terribly conflicted and possibly giving in to his darker impulses to achieve short term goals. I had no question that he would redeem himself at the very end. But I thought, as dangerous as Empire was, that George would go in the direction of me betraying someone, and even letting them be sacrificed before realizing the error of my ways, Ebenezer Scrooge style. I was completely misled. I was wrong in that assumption. It took me a very long time to reconcile my opinions about the material, and how it should be dealt with, and what the reality was. It wasn't an easy journey for me.
Having said that, you step back, and you say, if this is what he wants, what is the best way to accomplish his vision? You put your own opinion aside, and get down to the business of reading that screenplay and how it should be refined, so that in the best of your abilities you can serve the writer and the director. That's the case with all these pictures. Same with the new one. Over the years, I have been fascinated by how the student becomes the master. As they grew and became older, and wiser, and more experienced..."
"That is interesting. That is something I do recognize. That this is the first of any of the titles that will be helmed by the fan generation, Now, Lawrence Kasdan is along for the ride, but in terms of the director and the co-writer, its the first from the fan generation. I hate to caricature George as someone who is broadly not an actor's director. It's more that he is instinctive, so when he casts someone in a role, that actor or actress is so close to what he wants, that there is not a lot to talk about. I remember, I went out for American Graffiti. I never met George, I met the casting director. And, later when I saw the film, I said, 'The closest I could have come to being in that picture is Ronnie Howard's part.' Even though I would have loved to be any of the many characters in that movie. Harrison is in it. He made me laugh out loud the first time I ever saw him on screen. I realized I was just wrong. Ron Howard was just so much more authentically what he was looking for in that role. So it's unfair to paint him in the broad strokes of 'Oh, he's not an actor's director.' He wants to see you do it, and then talk about it later. You'll ask him a question, 'Is Luke getting jealous of this guy hitting on the Princess all the time? He's getting under my skin...' And he's like, 'Ah, nah...Just do it, we'll talk about it later.' Then, of course, we don't talk about it later. In contrast, J.J. Abrams is much more upbeat. He is loquacious, he is engaged. He loves the process so much. George is so much more focused and serious, and looking at it from a different perspective."
Mark Hamill was later asked if he ever considered not returning as Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The answer might surprise you:
"Quite easily. My first instinct was, don't try to toy with what was good and nice and fun. I never expected they would go back to these characters. I never thought it was out of the question to do more episodes. But I thought they'd focus on a new generation. In a way it sort of is. Its about the new generation. We give perspective. It gives you scope. We always envisioned seeing these characters grow, and change, and be different then they were before. But I thought...It's too high risk. It will be great no matter what. Why mess with that? I thought, 'I won't do it unless everyone else is on board.' That was my feeling, It was all or none. As it turns out, they were all on board."
Recently, it was reported that Kingsman: The Secret Service director Matthew Vaughn was interesting in directing one of the upcoming Star Wars sequels or spinoffs. Does Mark Hamill believe the guy is right for this beloved sci-fi universe?
"There's no question about it. Are you kidding? (Laughs) All people have to do is watch [Kingsman], and people will be dying for him to do one."
Mark Hamill wrapped up his Schmoes Know interview with his iconic voice as the Joker, giving a shout out to all his fans. We've included the video, you can check it out at the hour and thirteen minute mark: