Watch Riz Ahmed respond to Trump alt-right supporters’ ‘Star Wars’ boycott

'Rogue One' has been criticised for promoting a 'multiculturalism anti-American agenda'

Star Wars actor Riz Ahmed has responded to the alt-right’s boycott of the franchise’s new film Rogue One.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, out today, is the first in Disney’s planned “Anthology Series” of spin-off films.

It was recently reported that members of the alt-right who championed Donald Trump’s election victory have opposed the new movie with the hashtag #DumpStarWars, criticising the film for promoting a “multiculturalism anti-American agenda in a science fiction Disney movie”.

The row kicked off after the film’s scriptwriter Chris Weitz last month posted a tweet, which has since been deleted, which stated: “Please note that the Empire is a white supremacist (human) organisation, opposed by a multi-cultural group led by brave women.”

Speaking to NME about the criticism, Ahmed – who stars as Bodhi Rook in Rogue One – said: “We live in such divisive and divided times. Anywhere you look around the world, it seems like people are scared. When people get scared, they start seeing the world in terms of us and them. I think that Star Wars is something that little kids, old men and women, people all around the world can relate to and are invested in.”

He added: “I think we should use this opportunity to bring people together and enjoy a story that means a lot to so many people. This was a film made with two things in mind: to preserve the Star Wars heritage and to do something distinctive with it. Hopefully that’s something that fans will respond to.”

Watch NME‘s full video interview with Riz Ahmed above.