If the internet’s existence has taught us anything beyond cruelty and exciting new brands of porn, it’s that Star Wars is a cultural institution that is taken very seriously and analyzed within a millimeter of its life. That’s the nature of the gargantuan omnipresent franchise beast. One of the debated issues upon the arrival of Episode VII in 2015 was the concern the franchise might be too invested in paying tribute to its predecessors. According to The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson, you shouldn’t count on Episode VIII being something you can place in the “homage” column.
“It’s very interesting, the idea of the inescapable draw of nostalgia, because it’s there and it’s impossible to deny the emotional reaction that I have walking onto the interior of the Falcon,” the Looper filmmaker told the mag.
Emotional reaction aside, Johnson notes that his film isn’t veering into the realm of the h-word. In fact, he says The Last Jedi is going to bring in the new and push the overall Star Wars saga forward. A melding of the familiar and the undiscovered.
“I guess I’d be hesitant to use the word ‘homage’ because that makes it sound like it’s just kind of turning the crank and replaying an old tune because we all like it,” he cautioned. “But telling a story that brings new things and pushes everything forward in an interesting way, that is in this world that we all recognise, there’s something very powerful about that.”
As is customary, there will be hundreds of critics and millions of fans at the ready to compare notes on Johnson’s view of The Last Jedi when the film hits theaters on December 15.