Rian Johnson Gives (Unnecessary) Blessing to Retcon Rey’s Parentage in ‘STAR WARS: Episode IX’

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When it comes to The Last Jedi, there are controversies aplenty. Aside from the film’s treatment of Luke Skywalker, no subject was more controversial than that of Rey’s parents. With Rey being so powerful in the Force, the expectation was that she came from a lineage also strong with the Force. JJ Abrams set the stage for that with Rey’s vision in The Force Awakens. Conversely, Rian Johnson then subverted that expectation by having Kylo Ren claim Rey’s parents were “nobody”. Now, the divisive Star Wars director says he’s okay with ret-conning Rey’s parentage in Star Wars: Episode IX.

Rian Johnson; Rey
Rey (presumably) watches her parents fly away in The Force Awakens.
(Image: Disney/Lucasfilm)

Rian Johnson created discord among the Star Wars fandom before The Last Jedi even began production. He declared that he would not be utilizing the story arc JJ Abrams already created. Instead he’d create his own film, with his own vision. Part of that was establishing Rey as a nobody herself, and demonstrating that anyone can be strong in the Force. But that’s not what a majority of fans seem to have wanted. In recent statements, Johnson appears to be backtracking on his former position.

Rian Johnson Gives Blessing to Retcon Rey’s Parentage

Speaking to MTV News recently, Rian Johnson had this to say when asked his opinion on Abrams retconning Rey’s lineage:

I want to let go of all my expectations… sit back… be entertained… to be surprised… thrilled. I want [J.J. Abrams] to do stuff I wasn’t expecting him to do and just go along for the ride. For me, that’s why I go to the movies, you know?”

Rogue One; Rian Johnson; Last Jedi
Rian Johnson directing Daisy Ridley (Rey)The Last Jedi. (Image: Disney/Lucasfilm)

There’s a lot loaded in that statement. First and foremost, Rian Johnson is applying his own logic to how Abrams may treat Episode IX. While he (Johnson) may want Episode IX to deliver unexpected things, that’s not the general consensus. This statement rings more true of a justification for his own actions than an endorsement for Abrams to do the same.

Rey’s Parentage: Neither Blessing Nor Retcon Needed

In any event, it’s not like Johnson’s blessing is needed. Abrams is a capable and talented writer, director and producer. Rumors of a Terminator C-3PO aside, I have full confidence that Episode IX will be everything fans want it to be. Plus, Abrams’ take on Rey’s parentage wouldn’t even be retcon. Kylo Ren was trying manipulate Rey into joining him. What better way than to lie and convince her she had no other direction in which to turn? In that instance Rey’s parentage can remain exactly as Abrams first envisioned it without any retcon whatsoever.

Rey; Rian Johnson
Rey closes the door on Kylo Ren and ponders her future in The Last Jedi.
(Image: Disney/Lucasfilm)

Star Wars Celebration is next weekend. We’re sure to learn more about Episode IX at the event. In the meantime, perhaps Rian Johnson should just focus on Knives Out and leave Episode IX to Abrams.

Source: MTV News

2 Comments

  1. Quentin

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