In case you're just coming out of a coma for the past three years, you're probably well aware that Star Wars: The Force Awakens is premiering on December 18. The Force is already strong with moviegoers, with over $50 million in advanced tickets sold, shattering the previous pre-sales box office record of $25 million set by The Dark Knight Rises in 2012. Unfortunately, there has been some "controversy" along the way as well, with a select group of fans reacting negatively to the first trailer, where John Boyega's Finn is first seen as a Stormtrooper. During an appearance on Howard Stern's radio program, Star Wars: The Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams reveals that he doesn't understand why some people have a problem with a black Stormtrooper. When Stern says he doesn't understand the problem, the filmmaker responded with the following.
"Neither did I. All I know is that John Boyega is extraordinary in the movie. I think the people who are complaining about that probably have bigger problems than there's a black Stormtrooper."
The filmmaker also addressed the absence of Luke Skywalker in any of the trailers, photos or other bits of footage released thus far from Star Wars: The Force Awakens. His absence has fueled several rumors about what he's been up to since Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi, none of which have been confirmed, although many are quite intriguing. When asked about why he decided not to showcase this iconic character, the filmmaker had this to say.
"Here's the thing. I really want to make sure we're not ruining the movie for people, that they're not seeing too much of it before it comes out. I hate when I see a trailer, and I feel like I've just seen a whole movie in an encapsulated form. It makes me nuts. You don't have to show the whole story. I'd rather ask questions and have them be answered for me."
J.J. Abrams directs Star Wars: The Force Awakens from a script he co-wrote with Lawrence Kasdan. The ensemble cast includes franchise favorites such as Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Anthony Daniels and Peter Mayhew, along with new stars such as Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong'o, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson and Max von Sydow. Kathleen Kennedy, J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burk are producing with Tommy Harper and Jason D. McGatlin serving as executive producers. Click on the audio player below to hear what the filmmaker had to say about the black Stormtrooper controversy and Luke Skywalker as the countdown continues to Star Wars: The Force Awakens.