Oscar Isaac Made a New ‘Enemy’ During ‘Rise of Skywalker’ Filming

Four words in particular strike fear into the heart of every Star Wars fan: “I don’t like sand.” As it turns out, Anakin Skywalker is hardly alone in disliking all those grains. Now Poe Dameron isn’t fond of it either. 

Only Oscar Isaac’s dislike of sand isn’t inspired by gooey romantic dialogue, but by the Rise of Skywalker shoot. Truly, sand has been a thorn in the side of all kinds of Star Wars people, going back to the original 1977 film. It’s to be expected when you film in the desert, but it’s even worse for droids than it is for humans. 

How sand got a bad rap in Star Wars

Oscar Isaac half smiling
Oscar Isaac | Mike Marsland/WireImage/Getty Images

Nowadays, if you mention sand to a Star Wars fan, their face twists into a grimace as they remember Hayden Christensen’s immortal lines in 2002’s Attack of the Clones when he’s speaking to his beloved Padme. 

“I don’t like sand. It’s coarse and rough and irritating. And it gets everywhere. Not like you. You’re soft and smooth.” 

Fans have been trying to figure out how Padme managed to fall for Anakin after cringe-worthy lines like that. Even for George Lucas, who has never been known for great dialogue, those lines clunked like a bad transmission. 

It’s possible that Lucas wrote those lines due to bad memories of the 1977 shoot in Tunisia, where the Tatooine scenes were filmed. According to this Reddit thread, a biography of Lucas states “Sand, it seemed, got into everything, stinging eyes, abrading skin and getting into nearly every crack and crevice.” 

Why Oscar Isaac doesn’t like sand either

Now the torch of sand hatred has been passed down to Oscar Isaac. According to Screen Rant, some making-of footage has come out for the movie’s release on home video. In fact, Disney pushed the film out for digital sale earlier than planned as a response to the pandemic. 

In a making-of clip that EW posted, the actor says he had a lot of fun during the shoot, except for that darned sand. “They’d have fans, and you’d just have all this sand getting into your eyes. I’d go home after some days and tons of sand would be pouring out of my hair,” he said. 

Ironically enough, Isaac is dealing with even more of it, having filmed scenes for Dune, a new version of the Frank Herbert sci-fi classic directed by Denis Villeneuve, whose credits include Arrival and Blade Runner 2049. Sand horror stories will continue for years to come unless filmmakers use only computer-generated grains. 

C-3PO hates sand so much, there’s a book about it

The sand may have been tough for Anakin Skywalker, George Lucas and Oscar Isaac but nobody had it worse than Anthony Daniels, the man who played C-3PO in all nine Skywalker films. The sand was a nightmare as it got inside his metallic and very hot, sweltering costume. 

Perhaps that’s what inspired a picture book for kids called C-3PO does NOT Like Sand. The publisher’s summary of the book says our favorite droids “are on a special mission to the desert planet of Tatooine for the Resistance, but between befriending Banthas and cheering on pod races, (sic) BB-8 and R2-D2 are having a hard time focusing. What’s a droid to do but have some fun in the sun? It’s a good thing everyone’s favorite protocol droid is on hand to keep the mission on track. But one thing is for certain, C-3PO does not like sand!”

Fans can relive the sandy adventures of The Rise of Skywalker on digital now, on physical media March 31. A date for Disney+ has not been announced, but that may come sooner rather than later as fans will be home for a while.