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Kelly Marie Tran’s Rose Tico had her own Rise of Skywalker character poster and the actress did press all over the world, yet she only was seen on screen for for less than two minutes in the latest Star Wars installment. Why? Co-writer Chris Terrio attempted to explain himself to fans in an interview the other day, but he’s backtracking in order to clarify. In his words:
I badly misspoke if in an earlier statement I implied that any cut scenes between Rose and Leia were the fault of our VFX team and the wizards at ILM. In that earlier interview, I was referring to a specific scene in which Leia’s emotional state in Episode VII did not seem to match the scene we wrote for use in Episode IX, and so it was cut at the script stage before the VFX work was done. If we had chosen to use the scene, ILM would have made it look perfect. They always do. ILM performed actual miracles at every stage of the creative process in Episode IX. I remain in awe of their work.
Chris Terrio made this statement to Vulture following earlier comments to Awards Daily where he had discussed why Kelly Marie Tran’s role was so small in Rise of Skywalker. When he and J.J. Abrams wrote the Episode IX script together, they decided to position Rose Tico alongside General Leia Organa back at the Resistance base instead of having her join Rey, Finn and Poe. Yet, when it came down to editing Rose’s scenes against unused Force Awakens footage of the late Carrie Fisher, it just didn’t end up working visually as well as they had hoped.
The Star Wars writer previously said the reason Rose Tico had a shortened role in Rise of Skywalker was due to the difficulty of using Carrie Fisher’s footage. He said the scenes between Rose and Leia “turned out to not meet the standard of photorealism”. Taken out of context, the quote does sound like a jab at the VFX team, when that was not Chris Terrio’s intention. He clarifies it was a narrative decision and not at the fault of those in the visual effects department and made at the script stage of the process.
But strap in Rose Tico fans, this would then mean that the Resistance fighter’s lines were minimized quite early in the filming process. It’s not as if Kelly Marie Tran had these massive sequences she filmed that were cut from the movie – her part was shortened after most of the scenes between her and General Leia were cut.
Following the release of Rise of Skywalker, fans were vocal about their disappointment in Rose Tico’s short screen time, getting #RoseTicoDeservedBetter trending. Their voices even caught the attention of Crazy Rich Asians director Jon M. Chu on the matter of Rose Tico, who tweeted this out:
Could this happen? It certainly speaks volumes about Rose Tico as a character by the amount of outcry online over her small role and Jon M. Chu volunteering to be part of a project for Disney+ (sign up for a free 7-day trial to the streaming service here).
The changes made to Rose Tico’s role in The Rise of Skywalker isn’t the only thing fans are talking about. After rumors of more deleted scenes not present in Episode IX, fans have started campaigning for the “J.J. Cut”.
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