Rian Johnson, director of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, has responded to ongoing criticism of the new film from fans.
A number of fans have criticised the film for not sticking to the series’ canon, with one even starting a petition to get the film erased and remade. The film currently has a 55% audience satisfaction rating on reviews aggregate Rotten Tomatoes, a stark contrast to the 93% critical rating.
Now, in an interview with Business Insider, Johnson has responded to the critics. “I’m aware through my own experience that, first of all, the fans are so passionate, they care so deeply — sometimes they care very violently at me on Twitter,” Johnson says.
“But it’s because they care about these things, and it hurts when you’re expecting something specific and you don’t get it from something that you love. It always hurts, so I don’t take it personally if a fan reacts negatively and lashes out on me on Twitter. That’s fine. It’s my job to be there for that. Like you said, every fan has a list of stuff they want a Star Wars movie to be and they don’t want a Star Warsmovie to be. You’re going to find very few fans out there whose lists line up.”
He continues: “I also know the same way the original movies were personal for Lucas. Lucas never made a Star Wars movie by sitting down and thinking, ‘What do the fans want to see?’ And I knew if I wrote wondering what the fans would want, as tempting as that is, it wouldn’t work, because people would still be shouting at me, ‘F— you, you ruined Star Wars,’ and I would make a bad movie. And ultimately, that’s the one thing nobody wants.
“And let me just add that 80-90% of the reaction I’ve gotten from Twitter has been really lovely,” Johnson added. “There’s been a lot of joy and love from fans. When I talk about the negative stuff, that’s not the full picture of the fans at all.”
In a four-star review, NME said: “The Last Jedi blasts the rule book to pieces, sending the Skywalker saga in unexpected directions. Not all its risks pay off, but its biggest wins outdo anything in the previous film. For fans, there are many, many moments that will leave you cheering or weeping, possibly both at once.”