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Rian Johnson on How He Handles the Pressure of Directing ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’

Written By: Nick Poulimenakos

Ever since it was announced that Rian Johnson (Brick, Looper), would be directing the eighth entry into the Skywalker Story, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, fans have praised the decision to bring such a unique director into the massive franchise.

However, many fans, myself included, would think that directing a film of this magnitude would bring about a lot of pressure. When it comes to Star Wars, there are millions of fans out there who are looking to you to directing a film that pleases almost everyone and if you come up short, you’ll never hear the end of it. Johnson however expressed that, while there was pressure, jumping directly into the film kind of alleviated all of it.

Johnson recently sat down with Thomas Kail, director of the Broadway smash hit, Hamilton, on YouTube’s The Star Wars Showwhere he was asked about the pressures of directing The Last Jedi:

“Once I actually jumped into it, it was the most fun I’ve ever had writing. It was the least scary process. I think part of it was, I wasn’t alone for the process. I was writing on my own, but I moved up to San Francisco for a few months, and every few weeks I would go in and sit down with Kiri Hart and her whole story group team, and I would just put everything I was thinking of up on the white board and just bounce it off everyone. Just see what everyone thought. Having that kind of gut check — not just for, wait, don’t do that, but for, yeah, you can do that, if that’s interesting to you, take that path — having that permission from somebody, I think that had a lot to do with it.”

Check out the full video of The Star Wars Show below and make sure to check out Star Wars: The Last Jedi when it flies into a galaxy near you on December 15, 2017. 

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