John Boyega says his ‘Star Wars’ criticism led to “very transparent” conversation with Disney

"There was a lot of explaining on their end in terms of the way they saw things"

John Boyega has opened-up about his recent criticism of how his character Finn was treated in Star Wars‘ sequel trilogy, admitting it led to a “transparent” conversation with Disney.

Back in September, the actor criticised the company for how his role was “pushed to the side” by end of the three movies, alongside other characters played by actors of colour such as Kelly Marie Tran’s Rose.

“What I would say to Disney is do not bring out a black character, market them to be much more important in the franchise than they are and then have them pushed to the side,” he told GQ. “It’s not good. I’ll say it straight up.”

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Recalling his decision to speak out, Boyega has now told The Hollywood Reporter: “I’m the type of person that came into an industry in which I felt there was, not to give it the L.A. stab, just a lot of pretense.

John Boyega, Star Wars, The Rise Of Skywalker
John Boyega as Finn in ‘Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker’ CREDIT: ILM and Lucasfilm Ltd./The Hollywood Archive

“I don’t roll like that. I’ve been in situations in life in which I know what it feels like to have your life at risk. There are deeper things going on here. I don’t care about trying to mesh in with the system in order to secretly work it. That’s just not my way.

“Everyone’s just got to have an honest and open conversation. It doesn’t have to be conflicting or rude, but it’s a chance for us to actually, really and truly understand where each other is coming from.”

John Boyega – Credit: Getty

Opening up further about speaking to Disney afterwards, the star revealed: “It was a very honest, a very transparent conversation. There was a lot of explaining on their end in terms of the way they saw things. They gave me a chance also to explain what my experience was like.

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“I’d hope that me being so open with my career, at this stage, would help the next man, the guy that wants to be the assistant DOP, the guy that wants to be a producer. I hope that the conversation is not such a taboo or elephant in the room now, because someone just came and said it.”

Meanwhile, perfume brand Jo Malone London has apologised for removing John Boyega from an advert in China.

The Star Wars actor was named the company’s first male global ambassador last year and had conceived and directed a personal video, called London Gent, in Peckham to advertise aftershave for the brand.

However, the Chinese version of the advert was re-shot with local actor Liu Haoran, while Boyega’s friends and family that featured in the original were also removed.

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