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September 14 2016

Adam Driver begins talking up Star Wars Episode VIII

Adam Driver, the man under the Kylo Ren helmet, is already starting to talk about Star Wars: Episode VIII and where what he thinks of the script.

Currently out doing press for his new film Paterson, it is inevitable that Adam Driver is going to be asked about Episode VIII and what he can discuss. Speaking with Collider, the actor was asked one of the most important questions, and that is what it was like moving on from J.J. Abrams to Rian Johnson running the ship.

Maybe this is just me thinking of myself, but I’m surprised [because] in their shoes I’d be way more stressed out than [J.J. and Rian] seem to be. Rian is coming into something that we kind of set up and he just took it to the next level in a really great way. He wrote it, too, and Rian’s writing is so clear. I learned a lot of things about my character through his writing. Some things we talked about before and some things we didn’t. He was working on [the script] while we were still working on the first one. To understand what J.J. was doing and take ownership from there is kind of a remarkable thing. And he’s the most polite, unassuming guy and he was appropriately territorial about some things but would still be the first to admit when something’s not working. A lot of times you need to rise to understand what the script is, and perhaps I’m beginning to be unclear, but he’s a great person to work with.

The next question, honestly, is one I usually just rolls me eyes at. When you ask an actor what they thought of a script do you really expect them to say it sucked? That aside, Driver at least goes into a bit of why he enjoyed it.

It’s great. It’s similar to how The Empire Strikes Back has a different tone. For that people always go “oooh, it’s dark” but I don’t know that it necessarily is. It’s just different in tone in a way that I think is great and necessary but also very clear. He trusts [that] his audience is ready for nuance and ambiguity. He’s not dumbing anything down for someone and that’s really fun to play.

Lastly, Driver was asked about the energy on this set compared to the first one seeing as he now had audience reaction to have on his mind, and, again, he says some interesting things.

The stakes are even higher, I think. No one’s relaxing. Well, I can’t speak for everyone, but I didn’t feel more relaxed as if we’d accomplished anything. It’s one more reason we have to redouble our efforts and just make it even more specific, but then you also have to let it all go and not think too much while you’re working on it. It’s the same thing you do when you’re working on something like Jim (Jarmusch’s) movie, too.

I think I said something like this to you last year, but I remember being very overwhelmed by the idea of working on something [like this] where the scale was so big. I remember calling J.J. and saying, “I’m overwhelmed by the machine of it” and him basically saying that we’ll break it down into pieces and solve it in these little moments. One moment will lead to this moment and then that moment will lead to this moment and at the end of it hopefully we’ll have a movie. Of course, that’s like working with anything. The scale is bigger, and obviously the catering and the trailers are better when compared to a smaller independent movie, but that doesn’t matter. You’re not watching a movie thinking about how they had really great trailers, or about their catering, you’re trying to follow these moments and follow these characters. So working on it, even though the scale is different, the approach to making it is the exact same. And I feel like I’ve been lucky working with J.J. and Rian, who are two people who get that instinctually.

It’s not my job to worry about the bigger picture or what it means or try to appease a certain group of people. It’s my job to read the script, be prepared, and be generous to the other people that I’m acting with in order to tell the best version of the story that Rian came up with. Then whatever it means and whatever meaning people attach to it, by that point it’s not my responsibility.

When I first watched The Force Awakens I found Driver a bit flat, but on my second viewing I started to get it. Kylo had no clue what he was doing. he had clearly been brainwashed by Snoke into giving into the Dark Side by the lure of his grandfather’s legacy and feelings of abandonment by his parents. Essentially he was a petulant child that just happened to have Force abilities. Now the question is whether the next film can give him a bit more depth, and it’s beginning to sound like it might.

Star Wars: Episode VIII will hit theaters on Dec. 15, 2017.


Source: Collider .


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