Is Naomi Ackie Really Done With ‘Star Wars’?
Becoming a new character in the Star Wars franchise is not an easy way to begin a career, or even halfway into stardom. One thing for sure is that after an actor appears in the galaxy far, far away, life is never the same. Such as it was for the likes of Daisy Ridley and Adam Driver, though what about the minor character actors like Naomi Ackie?
Those who remember Jannah in The Rise of Skywalker will know Ackie played her as a bit of a standout in the Resistance, mostly because she was a new character and not one adhering to prior canon.
Based on a recent interview, Ackie said it was inspiring to play a new character with a fresh slate. However, the final scene has drawn some questions on whether we’ll see her again alongside one iconic character.
Jannah became a new hero in her own right
According to Ackie in an interview with Elle, the response to having an African-American woman play a pivotal character in Star Wars was very positive. She did worry about the negativity so many other women in the cast have endured on social media. It’s not even worth reiterating what Daisy Ridley and Kelly Marie Tran had to go through over the last several years.
Ackie hasn’t been attacked on social media (at least based on what’s known), though she’s only limited herself to having an official Instagram account. Not that she’s the first African-American person or even woman to be in a Star Wars movie. Lupita Nyong’o voiced Maz Kanata, even though audiences didn’t see her as she really is.
Some might carp Nyong’o wasn’t seen as herself and instead in the very alien guise of Maz. At least Mackie is seen in her physical glory, and she doesn’t go unnoticed by the other characters.
After participating in the final battle with the Resistance, there’s a celebration similar to the one in Return of the Jedi. One of the final scenes is Jannah meeting Lando Calrissian for the first time, leading to a typical Lando flirt.
Did some people bristle at Lando hitting on Naomi Ackie’s character?
There hasn’t been much talk about Lando seeming to hit on Jannah, giving some subtle assumption the two will become an item later. One thing for sure is future appearances of Lando probably aren’t done.
Whether it’s in flashbacks for The Mandalorian, or showing up in future Star Wars features, Billy Dee Williams will probably be able to close out his career with arguably his most famous character he ever played.
At the same time, how uncomfortable was it for some to see 82-year-old Williams maybe trying to hook up with Jannah? Ackie is 27 years old, and one can assume Jannah is about the same age.
Lando’s pickup line was also a bit amusing, though it’s not unusual to expect Lando to be more of a ladies’ man than Poe Dameron apparently was. Jannah apparently didn’t rebuff Lando since she warmed to him immediately.
In real life, Ackie said in her Elle interview she got along great with Williams on the set.
There could be a twist in Jannah being Lando’s daughter
A companion book to The Rise of Skywalker seems to suggest Jannah could be Lando’s lost daughter since he lost his family to the First Order. One of those family members was his daughter.
Since Jannah says she doesn’t know who her parents were, is it possible audiences will see more of her and Lando later as they discover themselves as family members?
The above book supposedly confirms this, not including some references reportedly cut out of the movie about the First Order kidnapping children to fight for them.
Just like in the original trilogy, what appears to be romantic pairings might turn out to be unknowing family relations.