Rian Johnson Thought ‘The Rise of Skywalker’ Was a ‘Special Experience’

Rian Johnson’s journey as a director and filmmaker has been pretty eventful. Notably, he directed The Last Jedi, the eighth film in the Star Wars franchise, which received a lot of backlash from different pockets of fans. Despite that, he went on to make an Oscar-nominated film, Knives Out. With his complex relationship with the franchise, how did he feel about The Rise of Skywalker? He actually liked it a lot. 

Director Rian Johnson at the world premiere of 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' at The Shrine Auditorium on December 9, 2017.
Director Rian Johnson at the world premiere of ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ at The Shrine Auditorium on December 9, 2017 | Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Disney

Rian Johnson shared his thoughts on the newest ‘Star Wars’ movie

While on the red carpet for the Oscars, MTV News’ Josh Horowitz caught up with Johnson and asked about his “totally impartial” thoughts regarding Episode IX. “I had a blast, man. Made me so proud seeing the heart and soul that J.J. [Abrams] put into it,” Johnson answered. 

He then went on to talk about how great it was to see actors he worked with take on their roles in this conclusion. “And seeing my friends who were in the movie just, like, bring the whole thing to a conclusion,” he said. “Yeah, for me as a Star Wars fan, it was a really special experience.”

The Rise of Skywalker is one of the lowest-rated Star Wars films ever, but fans have a more favorable reaction to it. Johnson just so happens to be one of those fans. 

Johnson’s ‘Star Wars’ trilogy could still happen

But don’t expect Johnson to leave the Star Wars universe any time soon, either. Despite his success with Knives Out and original stories, he’s still slated to lead a few Star Wars movies. “I’m still talking to Lucasfilm but they haven’t announced anything on their slate yet,” Johnson told Variety on Jan. 13. 

With that, it’s still too early to think about what the film could focus on, but Johnson is a lifelong fan of the franchise, so a unique take is what can be expected from him. And even though he received a lot of negative feedback from The Last Jedi, it was something he expected. “People care deeply about Star Wars, and every single person has a slightly different version of what they think Star Wars is,” Johnson said on a panel in November with Wired. “And so much of the fun of it is arguing about it.”

What is Johnson’s plan for a ‘Knives Out’ sequel?

And for fans of his most recent work, Knives Out, Johnson already has the wheels turning about the sequel. “It’s going to be Daniel (Craig) playing Benoit Blanc, the detective. Other than that, all bets are off. It’s a totally new cast,” Johnson told Variety at the Oscars on Feb. 9.

As for who the new cast could consist of, Johnson is open to so many big actors. “I want everybody! Just point,” Johnson said at the Academy Awards. “Throw a rock on this red carpet and you’ll hit someone that I want in the movie.” With the success of the first film, it probably won’t be hard to find another all-star cast.