Star Wars Episode 9 Director Addresses "Fanboy Menace" And The Knights Of Ren

"We don’t have to agree with every single thing to love something."

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The Skywalker saga ends next month with the release of Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker, concluding a nine-movie story that began with the 1977 release of the original Star Wars. Director J.J. Abrams has dissuced the film, and some of the decisions he has made for it, with Esquire. As well the movie itself, Abrams was asked to comment on the toxicity of the fandom around the franchise.

When asked about the Knights of Ren, Kylo Ren's team last seen in The Force Awakens, Abrams says that he's excited to explore them further. "We came up with them in Force Awakens and had very brief sighting of them, it was something that we had a lot of ideas of sort of further adventures with them," he says. "All sorts of things that were not the focus of the central story, and never made it into the movie." The Last Jedi did not address the Knights of Ren, which has allowed Abrams to bring them back now. "I mean, they’re best kept more mysterious than familiar, which is just to say there aren’t going to be a lot of scenes with them taking their masks off and hanging out and eating sandwiches, but it felt like I definitely wanted to see more of them than we had."

Abrams is also asked to address toxicity in the Star Wars fan base, and how the response to the movies may have changed over time. "The reaction to Star Wars, the increased attacks, the increased negativity, the Fandom Menace as they call it, you know, that is not unique to Star Wars," he says. "I think we live in a time where if you’re not being divisive...sometimes you don’t quite feel like you’re playing the game."

Abrams says that, as someone who loves Star Wars, he hopes that "we can return to a time where we give things a bit more latitude," where the movies will be judged with "nuance and acceptance." In a recent discussion, The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson called Star Wars fans "the best fans in the world," despite the negative reception he has received from some of them.

Elsewhere in the interview, Abrams states that he hasn't seen the "final final" version of the film yet, and that he believes that Carrie Fisher would have been happy with and proud of her role in it. He also discusses Baby Yoda, saying that it's "not just cute but implies a story." He reveals that he's not currently working on anything further Star Wars related, although in the future he might well want to become involved again. "It’s a bit like asking someone at the end of a meal at French Laundry, you know, if they want to get a burger. It’s like, you know, I’m sure that one day having a burger would be the greatest idea in the history of time, but in this moment I’m full."

Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker arrives in cinemas on December 20. A new promo, set to Duel of the Fates, was recently released.

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dynamotnt

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lets face it many true star wars fan gave up half way through TFA when they fell asleep. Saw half of Rogue one and liked it but just wasn't invested in the new wave of SW films enough to care to finish it, and promptly ignored the release of the rest.

SW lost all credibility when it became apparent Rey bought boosters :(

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aross2004

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People sure get precious about their Star Wars.

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vega2505

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It's Fandom Menace, you didn't get the pun right.

Also, we don't have to like every little thing, but when 90% of what's there is garbage, it's kinda hard to justify caring about the leftover 10%. But this isn't really JJ's fault, I liked the new Star Trek movies, Kathleen Kennedy is the one in charge ruining everything and there's an internal civil war going on at Lucasfilm with people fighting against her clique of boot lickers.

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RestatBonfire

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I'll see it when I see it no rush. The last jedi in my opinion was a really bad movie. Very boring.

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SbargoVox3

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The Last Jedi wasn't an amazing film, but when the movie previous to that, Rogue One, was just a pile of pointless fan service and explosions "fans" creamed their pants over, TLJ taking a poorly aimed dump on the most sacred cool-to-15-year-olds concept in the entire setting, the Jedi, was only going to be received poorly. Too bad they didn't go nearly far enough with the "subversion" and had a poorly written mess to begin with. Might've been amazing then. Alas.

The Force Awakens was a pretty decent film, but "fans" read too much into the story and went off to create these incomprehensibly vast networks of fan theories and thanks to internet echo chambers, they became convinced that they were indeed correct and all along, Snoke was that one thing mentioned in some paperback extended universe book released 20 years ago and not just the Evil McBadguy of the movie. Cue massive disappointment when their almost-proven theories turned out to be nothing.

My hype for the Last Skywalker died when they got JJ Abrams back and the corpse was unceremoniously tossed into a ditch when Disney tried to play the crowd by announcing it'll have Palpatine in it. Fucking sigh. It's going to be more of what the "fans" want - lazer sword fights, explosions and of course, things they know. Remember to clap when you see the things you know.

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aross2004

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@sbargovox3: Rogue One was the best thing to happen to the franchise since the original trilogy.

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el_swanno

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@sbargovox3:

I saw the Emperor and I clapped!!

Just kidding. I can’t even bring myself to watch the trailer. I think I’m done with Star Wars. When all your planned films get cancelled and directors are running screaming there’s something terribly wrong behind the scenes. I’m not going to name names here but it’s Kathleen Kennedy.

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Larowyn

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I'm not even that into Star Wars, but man, The Last Jedi killed all hype I had for the current trilogy. And I'm one of the people who saw The Force Awakens several times during opening week alone.

First time in a while I exited the theater thinking "wow, did anything really happen in that movie? Feels like the characters went around in a big circle and accomplished nothing." So it's hard for me to dismiss the general negativity around the movie as being caused by "butthurt fans". To me, it wasn't a good movie, it wasn't even a good popcorn movie, it was just meh.

Hoping Episode IX surprises me, but it does have a lot of ground to cover. I think Abrams can pull it off.

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gamingdevil800

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Why aren't they designing missiles that they can fire through hyper space to destroy entire fleets? It's like the creation of the rifle in real life it changes warfare or at least should.

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Mogan

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Edited By Mogan  Moderator

@gamingdevil800: They really ****ed the logic of Star Wars right up in TLJ, all for the sake of a cool looking scene that ended up being basically pointless in the overall plot. : \

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Mattock1987

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There are too many whiny, entitled ‘true fans’ who can’t just enjoy a daft space movie and have to look for things to be angry about. Too many of the moany idiots signed a petition to delete and remake the Last Jedi because they didn’t like it so no one else should be able to watch it. How spoiled can some fans get.

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walbo

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@mattock1987: the last jedi completely ruined the lore and broke star wars. Whats the point in any battle when any remote controlled ship can light speed through a death star and destroy it. The lore explained why this couldn't happen, that is just one of many reasons why it is the worst movie of them all. Star wars has been my thing since a kid so i can see why people complain. Kinda feel bad for you that you have never had a geeky thing to grow up and love with haha. I do agree with you though about fans being whinny though, for me i liked what jj was doing and understood why he kind of had to copy the original to appeal to a new generation and i was excited for the next one but man i have never felt more disappointed with a hobby based incident in my life and the fans can be blamed for that.

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DhracoX

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@walbo: TFA was even worse imo.

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Mattock1987

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@walbo: it didn’t ruin the lore or break Star Wars, both of those things still exist for you to enjoy. That was a good scene, didn’t see it coming.

I do love Star Wars and I did grow up with it but I don’t feel the need to whine when I don’t get my way. Flawed Star Wars movies are better than no Star Wars movies. People are too entitled these days and have a bit too much consumer power due to social media and ‘influencers’ sadly being a thing.

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walbo

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@mattock1987: would have to dissagree my friend. For me that scene and many more definitely broke the lore as it is supposed to be impossible. It makes every single battle irrelevant as one ship can destroy a fleet. Disney cracked under pressure and gave into the whiny people but it feels like every movie since awakens has had no planning and swapping out directors all the time soes this. They need a plan like they had with the marvel movies as the whole franchise is a mess with different directors taking different roles with no good long term villians. I like kylo though but rian johnson messed him up too along with fin and po. I actually like rey people with women issues just hate her for the sake of it. I think a great way of explaining her powers would be to make her a clone of vaders mother but now im just rambling haha. I know exactly what you mean with the whole influencers and stuff but star wars is an anomaly as its been like this with a die hard fan base since before the Internet. Its hard to explain but the only thing that has felt star wars to me personally is awakens and mandalorian when it comes to Disneys version.

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Mattock1987

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@walbo: the lore isn’t broken, it still exists. The new movies chose to deviate from the lore, not always a bad thing. Bit of unpredictability is good. If Disney gave into the whiny people they would have deleted and remade TLJ. Things will happen regarding Star Wars that you may not like. Hardly a big sea in the grand scheme of things

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Mogan

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Mogan  Moderator

@mattock1987: You can't excuse an alteration to the series' logic that makes large parts of the previous stories illogical by saying, 'Unpredictability is good.'

It's like when Fin looks up from whatever planet he's on and sees the Star Killer beam blowing up planets in another solar system in real time with his regular eyes. Or when the Star Killer base/planet completely consumes it's own sun to fire. I'm all for big, dumb, cool looking scenes, but they can't raise obvious questions/inconsistencies about the way the setting works at a fundamental level and then not answer them.

It's lazy, bad storytelling.

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FuriousWK

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No one cares. Mandalorian is where it's at. You can feed those movies to China.

Bye.

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OdinXivraj

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Yes talk a vocal minority and use that as fuel to completely disregard the valid criticisms levied at these films. These movies fail at a fundamental level. They offer nothing in terms of character progression, a believable universe or coherent story telling. All while damaging already established aspects of the Star Wars universe. For example I watched Return of the Jedi the other day and during the big fleet battle at the end I couldn't help but think to myself "They should just strap a hyper space engine to a rock and shoot it at them" Why you ask? Because The Last Jedi made it the best possible tactic. That one scene made space battles feel pointless from now in till the end of Star Wars.

Than there is the fact that you try to have your cake and eat it too. You can't say that its time for the old characters to step aside for the new and then in the same breath bring back Emperor Palpatine. These movies are creatively bankrupt relaying on all the same plot beats as the other movies, just done significantly worse. But keep ignoring criticisms while downright insulting your viewer base. It always ends so well. Just ask Ghostbusters 2016 and Solo

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Mattock1987

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@OdinXivraj: calm down my dude, they’re just movies.

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storjohan_

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@mattock1987: Oh, so people can't have opinions on things anymore? No we won't calm down. You better get used to hearing criticism of this trashfire, it very much deserves it. And for many of us SW is part of our childhood and we hold it very dearly so don't tell us to calm down buddy. We have all the right in the world to voice our opinion and we are not just a vocal minority, we are the fandom menace and we are here to stay.

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Mattock1987

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@storjohan_: I’ve heard this criticism for years now, there’s nothing new, clever or purposeful about it anymore. Just because you care about something doesn’t mean it can’t change or that it can’t deviate away from what you want. None of us are that important so get over yourself and quit whining for your own sake. You’ll be happier.

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storjohan_

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@mattock1987: Do not criticize. Just consume product and get exited for next product right?

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CashPrizes

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Edited By CashPrizes

Total bull $*** rational by Abrams, that fans are negative because they don't feel like they are part of the discussion unless they act divisively.

You don't see any where near this much negativity towards the MCU movies, which has a very similar fan base, and has made several major fumbles recently (Endgame being underwhelming in whole, Captain Marvel being their worst movie ever).

However, The Last Jedi was so bad, and makes The Force Awakens even worse in hindsight, that it creates real impassioned negative discourse. They did not plan these films at all, which is completely insane, and there is almost no chance Abrams sticks the landing. Even if Rise of Skywalker is good (meaning it would have to be coherent and 2x more entertaining than the last 2 episodes), there is no way the trilogy doesn't come off as a schizophrenic mess.

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Nabinator

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@CashPrizes: "schizophrenic mess." Haha I loled at this. Because yeah, even if RoS is amazing, this will be entirely true.

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Mattock1987

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@CashPrizes: chill out.

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Mogan

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Mogan  Moderator

@mattock1987: Leave the moderation to the mods.

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uninspiredcup

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Dave Filoni > Lost guy

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