This post contains spoilers for Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
Admiral Ackbar — the Mon Calamari who first appeared in 1983’s Return of the Jedi and is best known for yelling “It’s a trap!” — died off screen during The Last Jedi, being sucked into space sans spaceship when The First Order fired upon a Resistance ship’s bridge. General Leia didn’t grab his collar as she used the Force to propel herself to safety, either. The film’s editor has already said he wondered if Ackbar’s death should have been handled differently, and now the puppeteer behind the character is also questioning Ackbar’s abrupt end.
Puppeteer Tim Rose spoke to Jamie Stangroom about his role in The Force Awakens (which was entirely cut out of the picture) and The Last Jedi (which he was hoping would give him something “more involving”). Upon reading the script, Rose said he thought, “Oh, Ackbar’s going out of the window. Well, that’s that then!”
He was upset — “actually in tears in the suit” — after it was a wrap. He said the following about his experience, which we will respond to with the utmost seriousness:
We finished all of our bits and they asked me to come down to camera. And I thought, “Oh well, maybe they’re going to say thank you for being one of the heritage characters and giving 30 years and all that.” But what they did was, they gave me a Millennium Falcon sign that had the day and the date on it, the scene number, and they said, “Can you look at camera and say ‘It’s a wrap?’ Because that would be really funny.”
I was actually in tears in the suit because I thought — after everything, after hoping there’d be something, after knowing there wasn’t going to be anything else, Ackbar’s final moment before he went in to the box was a big joke about “It’s a wrap.” They just thought “Wouldn’t it be funny?” And that was the sum total of my life as Ackbar.
What a mishap!
Yeah, I know we promised utmost seriousness. It was a trap.