Adam Driver had his own backstory for Kylo Ren while making the Star Wars sequel trilogy. While his story went unused, it can definitely be seen in the actor's performance throughout all three movies. Now, that story has been revealed, thanks to writer Lev Grossman, who wrote the big 2019 preview piece about The Rise of Skywalker for Vanity Fair. Driver revealed his version of Kylo Ren's story to the writer, which he is now sharing with us.
Like a lot of Star Wars fans, Lev Grossman wanted to see more of Kylo Ren's backstory. "I thought they would go back to show us more about why he turned to the dark side. [Adam Driver] had a lot of interesting thoughts about Ben Solo's childhood." Since the big screen didn't really take care of this aspect, comic books and novelizations have helped to fill in the gaps. However, they don't take Adam Driver's personal touches to the villain. Grossman explains.
"This is actually something Adam Driver said. He said that both Han Solo and Leia were way too self-absorbed and into this idea of themselves as heroes to really be attentive parents in the way a young and tender Kylo Ren really needed. There wasn't really that much of it in the movie so I just think we have to assume his childhood sucked."
Adam Driver had an intense and conflicted take on Kylo Ren, which seems to make a lot more sense now and takes a lot of the blame off of Luke Skywalker, which was shown in The Last Jedi. Had we seen Han Solo and Leia Organa grow into being self-absorbed parents, fans would have had a better understanding as to why Kylo Ren held so much resentment towards them. Whatever the case may be, it certainly helped Driver get his point across.
Even in The Force Awakens, one could see that Kylo Ren's story arc would ultimately end in redemption. Even after he killed his own father, the writing was on the wall, though a lot of fans didn't expect it to pan out the way that it did. J.J. Abrams directed the first installment and then came back to direct The Rise of Skywalker after Disney and Lucasfilm butted heads with Colin Trevorrow, so things could have ended differently for the character had Trevorrow stayed on board.
The Rise of Skywalker tried to tie up all of the loose ends from the sequel trilogy and the Skywalker Saga as a whole, which was always going to be impossible. Many believe that everything would have been better off had the final installment been split into two movies, though Disney and Lucasfilm were clear from the start that was not going to happen. At least we now know what was fueling Adam Driver's take on Kylo Ren and his bitterness towards his parents. The interview with Les Grossman was originally conducted by Inverse.