Filmmaker Rian Johnson, is the writer and director of the recent blockbuster Star Jedi Episode VII: The Last Wars. Here are 7 secrets he doesn’t want you to know about filming the movie.
1. Rian And Punishment
Johnson was asked to direct the seventh chapter in the Skywalker Saga, but what he doesn’t want you to know is that he had already made 3 other Star Wars movies before that, by accident. Head of Lucasfilm Kathleen Kennedy had stumbled upon these films and forced Rian to make an official movie as a punishment. The joke’s on Kennedy though as he actually enjoyed making the movie and got paid for it too.
The idea for the loveable Porgs came from when writer/director Rian Johnson, brought his own cat “Snaggles” onto the set, he saw the way the cast and crew took to Snaggles and thought “oh that’s cute, perhaps I can invent something called The Porgs to get that exact same reaction”. Which he did and they did.
3. Filmed in Actual Space
The decision to film in actual space nearly cost the director his job. As well as it being prohibitively expensive, several of the actors were not trained to handle the gruelling conditions of working in a vacuous void and the conditions caused multiple injuries.
Speaking of injuries, several actors were struck down by a severe bout of trenchfoot during filming. This is because one of the production crew had misread the plans for the production facilities and accidentally recreated the entirety of the First Battle of the Marne from World War I. This meant several nights of cast and crew sleeping in dirty waterlogged trenches for a few nights until the mistake was rectified.
5. Kylo Resurrection
Bringing back Kylo Ren after he clearly died in the first movie, was a bold decision. When asked about it, Johnson said “He didn’t die, what film were you watching? Maybe it was Girls. Did he die in Girls? Look, either way it wasn’t Star Wars”. Classic Rian!
6. Role With It
Everyone wanted a part in The Last Jedi but unfortunately there was only a few hundred parts to go around. In order to decide who got a part, Johnson held a Battle Royale in his garden. The winners were picked by who got the most kills, but who also still had a majority of their limbs to be able to perform their role.
7. Lucas Visit
One of the moments Johnson rarely talks about was the day when George Lucas turned up to the studio unannounced. The entire cast and crew hid behind scenery, pretending to not be around. This left George wandering around the soundstage alone, stroking pieces of the set humming a slow melancholy version of the Cantina Theme.
Despite all the troubles that plagued production Johnson still managed to knock it out of the park and create a movie that was not only successful, but full of fantastic actors performing with trenchfoot. Way to go Rian!