'The Last Jedi' Didn't Reveal Snoke's Backstory Because "It's Not Something That’s Particularly Interesting to Rey" | The Mary Sue
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The Last Jedi Didn’t Reveal Snoke’s Backstory Because “It’s Not Something That’s Particularly Interesting to Rey”


Star Wars: The Last Jedi has inspired a ton of strong fan reactions, from rage at the fate of Luke Skywalker to questions about Rey’s parents to speculation about the future of the Force. One of the many points of contention was the fact that Snoke’s identity, which many felt had been set up as a big mystery in The Force Awakens, was never revealed. In a recent interview, The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson explained why he decided not to include Snoke’s background in the film.

“In this particular story, it’s much more like the original trilogy,” he said, “where with Snoke if you think about the actual scenes, if suddenly I had paused one of the scenes to give a 30 second monologue about who he was, it would have kind of stopped the scene in its tracks, I realized.”

“Even though it could have been interesting, something that fans were interested in,” he continued, “as storytellers, we have to kind of serve what the scenes need to be. It was a tough thing, even though I knew some fans were interested in it I also knew it wasn’t something that dramatically had a place in this movie. Hopefully it can be addressed elsewhere or even J.J. may address it in the next movie. But it’s not something that’s particularly interesting to Rey, so we kind of had to follow through.”

Johnson’s answer captures what can be so difficult about writing and directing a bid-budget, super-hyped film like the Star Wars franchise. Ultimately, you have to serve the needs of the story for the film to work, but you also have to contend with the demands of an eager, speculation-happy fan base. In an ideal world, you can satisfy both, but sometimes you have to sacrifice one for the other.

And Johnson’s right here. None of the characters in the film actually cared about Snoke’s identity or backstory. Rey only cared about her own family history; Kylo Ren only cared about validation. As a result, any scene which revealed Snoke’s biography wouldn’t have a whole lot of drama, because the characters’ reactions would have been something along the lines of “Okay, so?” From that angle, I do think Johnson made the right call.

That said, I know that a lot of fans are dying to know where Snoke came from, so I hope Disney and Lucasfilm at least give us the answers in an Extended Universe novel, or possibly in Episode IX. I personally don’t care too much about Snoke’s origins, but I do want to know where he got those glittery slippers.

(Via /Film; image: Lucasfilm and Walt Disney Studios)

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