‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ Asks ‘Who Is Luke Skywalker?’

We’ve been trying to keep up with all the new details about Star Wars: The Force Awakens revealed in this week’s issue of Entertainment Weekly. Besides the new pictures and character backstory, we also learned more about an overarching theme for the film: “Who is Luke Skywalker?

That’s the question Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy posed to J.J. Abrams when he initially turned down the directing job because he wanted to do an original project after Star Trek Into Darkness. Abrams reportedly changed his mind and took the job for a chance to tell that story.

The Force Awakens takes place 30 years after Return of the Jedi, when The Empire has, according to EW, “morphed into a junta known as The First Order, while X-Wing pilots like Oscar Isaac’s Poe Dameron now fly for a splinter group known as The Resistance.” That much war can change a Skywalker.

Co-writer Lawrence Kasdan hints at what changes we might expect:

“I thought, ‘Wow, okay, these people have lived — they’re in a different place in their lives, Han and Leia and so on. They’ve lived the same 30 years I have. What would that be like? How would you see things differently?’ And I was trying to figure out how I saw things differently, and one of the surprises is that you don’t learn all that much. You haven’t become much wiser than you were, and things are not clearer to you, and the world is just as confusing as it always was — and that’s a kind of lovely thing to get to write about again. Age does not necessarily bring wisdom; it just brings experience.”

Well, that’s depressing yet oddly reassuring. We’re all just confused animals madly clinging to a ball hurtling through space. If you want to get wise, you’ll need more than 30 years. We’re talking, like, Yoda lifespans here, but look as good you will not.

(Via Entertainment Weekly)