Why Mark Hamill Didn't See Star Wars: The Force Awakens' Success Coming

The Force Awakens Luke Skywalker Mark Hamill

Star Wars is back in a major way, and it has been a welcome return for fans all over the world. As one of the original summer blockbuster properties, George Lucas' franchise has finally returned to its rightful place as one of the most popular series in existence. That said, the current excitement for The Last Jedi was not always a sure thing, and Mark Hamill recently revealed that the success of Star Wars: The Force Awakens took him by surprise when the film debuted in 2015. Mostly, because he had concerns about the film's ending. The actor explained:

I was really wrong about [The Force Awakens]. I said, 'When I turn around, the audience is going to hoot and holler because it's such an obvious cheat.' I didn't foresee John Williams's incredible music and the shots of Daisy [Ridley] or the build-up to it all. I was never happier to be wrong.

As Mark Hamill, who has played Luke Skywalker throughout the franchise's history, recently pointed out in his interview with ABC News: seeing Luke Skywalker turn around without saying a word in the final moments of The Force Awakens was a gamble. It represented a (literal) cliffhanger unlike anything the franchise had attempted before, and there existed a very real possibility that the conclusion could've quickly turned fans off. However, J.J. Abrams' direction of the scene, coupled with John Williams' score and Daisy Ridley's performance ultimately helped make the sequence work as well as it did. It pays to be wrong, doesn't it?

It's worth remembering that Star Wars: The Force Awakens was not always a guaranteed success for Disney and Lucasfilm. Long-awaited sequels have developed a nasty habit of letting fans down in recent years, and the possibility of the seventh Star Wars movie collapsing under the weight of its own expectations was always a prevalent concern. Beyond that, until the release of The Force Awakens in 2015, half of all Star Wars movies ever made (a.k.a the prequel trilogy) had ranged from mediocre to downright bad. Looking back, it's almost impossible to fathom that a new Star Wars movie could fail, but Star Wars: The Force Awakens traveled a rocky road to become the hit that it is today.

Despite the unexpected success of The Force Awakens, it's now clear that all eyes are on Star Wars: The Last Jedi to continue that trend later this year. Check out the recently released trailer for the upcoming Star Wars movie below.

With the successes of The Force Awakens and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story behind it, we're now on pins and needles waiting for Rian Johnson's upcoming Star Wars film to catapult this franchise into the future. The Last Jedi will debut in theaters later this year on December 15, so make sure to get yourself up to date on everything that we currently know about the project before it premieres.

Conner Schwerdtfeger

Originally from Connecticut, Conner grew up in San Diego and graduated from Chapman University in 2014. He now lives in Los Angeles working in and around the entertainment industry and can mostly be found binging horror movies and chugging coffee.