There are few movie properties quite as iconic and beloved as Star Wars. The galaxy far, far away has been passed down across generations, leading to a mass of diehard fans who will gladly wait in line for each new release. But since George Lucas gave up control of the property to Disney, the fans seem to be taking umbrage with various filmmaking choices by directors like J.J. Abrams and Rian Johnson. The Last Jedi has taken a ton of backlash from the community, who don't agree with the liberal changes to the canon. The hate has gotten so deafening that some fans are trying to remake the movie entirely. Now Guardians of the Galaxy director/writer James Gunn has spoken up about the toxic fandom, dropping the mic on Twitter with:
James Gunn has had enough with angry Star Wars fans, who seem to be getting more volatile as Disney releases each new blockbuster. Because while film criticism is common (especially with iconic properties), there seems to be an extra level of hatred hurling toward everyone involved in The Last Jedi. That doesn't include Gunn himself, but he's got friends involved with the franchise, and has become used to internet trolls.
James Gunn's Tweet comes from the recent increase in volatile Star Wars reactions. While The Last Jedi was released back in December, the movie has only continued to get hate in the following months. Actress Kelly Marie Tran was shown particular hate on social media for her portrayal of newcomer Rose Tico. In fact, she has since left Twitter, inspiring Rian Johnson, Mark Hamill, and more to come to her defense. Tico still hasn't returned to Twitter, although promotion for Episode IX will likely change that.
While plenty of Star Wars fans had issues with the events of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, the most common criticism seems to be that Rian Johnson took too many risks. He threw the rule book out as fast as Luke threw away his lightsaber, with changes being made to Force Ghosts, Leia's abilities, and more. While fans have a right to be gobsmacked by the film's contents, they seemed to have the exact opposite issues with The Force Awakens. When Episode VII came out in 2015, there were plenty who said it was too similar to A New Hope. So what does the community want? More or less risks from Star Wars filmmakers?
Despite fan backlash, Disney is showing no signs of slowing down the Star Wars franchise. Solo: A Star Wars Story arrived in theaters a few weeks ago, while J.J. Abrams will complete the current trilogy with Episode IX. There's also Rian Johnson's developing trilogy, so Star Wars fans may have to deal with more divisive sequels in the near future.
Episode IX will hit theaters on December 20, 2019. In the meantime, check out our 2018 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.
Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.
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