Star Wars 8 Director Explains the 'Casino City' Canto Bight

Rian Johnson has confirmed that the new planet in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, is called Canto Bight. The name itself was rumored back in April, when Canto Bight scenes were being shot in Croatia. If fans think that sounds similar to the words 'casino' and 'bright,' they'd be right; the planet will be a 'casino planet' and will be the setting for some of The Last Jedi's lighter moments.

Johnson has now explained that the planet will serve a purpose similar to the Cantina visited by Luke Skywalker in the original Star Wars (aka. Episode IV - A New Hope). Johnson follows the tradition of introducing new planets to a Star Wars movie, building a galaxy that must be very large by now - though still far, far away, of course.

Speaking to Vanity Fair as part of Star Wars 40th Anniversary and describing it as "a playground for rich a**holes," Johnson reveals that the city of Canto Bight will be visited by Finn and newcomer Rose (Kelly Marie Tran), and the city has been created with the sole intention of delivering lighter moments to a movie that would otherwise be "a dirge" (his words, not ours):

Rose and Finn’s adventure takes them to, among other places, another Johnson innovation: a glittering casino city called Canto Bight, “a Star Wars Monte Carlo–type environment, a little James Bond–ish, a little To Catch a Thief,” the director said. “It was an interesting challenge, portraying luxury and wealth in this universe.” So much of the Star Wars aesthetic is rooted in sandy desolation and scrapyard blight; it appealed to Johnson to carve out a corner of the galaxy that is the complete opposite. “I was thinking, O.K., let’s go ultra-glamour. Let’s create a playground, basically, for rich assholes,” he said.

Leia, Poe, Finn and Rose as they appear in Star Wars: The Last Jedi

As the image above details, Canto Bight plays host to a mix of weird and wonderful creatures, though how much of a role the city will play in The Last Jedi, remains to be seen. Rumors circulating around the end of 2016 hinted that Benicio del Toro’s character, known only as DJ, is connected to the casino. Johnson says there's a reason Del Toro's character is known as DJ on set; could we see him in charge of mixing the tracks for Canto Bight's revelers?

Johnson seems to be making efforts to inject The Last Jedi with some humor; something that became a staple in the early Star Wars movies, but which fell by the wayside somewhat during the prequels. That returned in The Force Awakens, with the bickering between the droids, and some great one-liners from Han Solo - and since Johnson's gone out of his way to mention it, it seems as though it's something to look forward to in the movie:

“I didn’t want this to be a dirge, a heavy-osity movie. So one thing I’ve tried really hard to do is keep the humor in there, to maintain the feeling, amid all the heavy operatic moments, that you’re on a fun ride.”

So will we see the guests of Canto Bight getting down on the dancefloor to tracks from Del Toro's DJ, while Finn and Rose try to complete a mission for the Resistance? Well, it might not all play out exactly like that, but this is Star Wars, so who knows? Hopefully, we'll get a better look at Canto Bight in future trailers.

NEXT: First Look at Laura Dern & Benicio del Toro's Characters in The Last Jedi

Source: Vanity Fair

Key Release Dates
  • Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017
  • Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018
  • Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019
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