Star Wars 8: Laura Dern Praises Rian Johnson's 'Indie' Directing Style


While fans of Star Wars are eagerly anticipating December as it holds the release of The Last Jedi, next month will be busy for them too. Not only is Rogue One hitting Blu-ray, but Star Wars Celebration is taking place in Orlando. Given that we don't have too many concrete details concerning Episode VIII right now, many fans are hoping that Celebration reveals a teaser or even full trailer for the film. In the meantime, minor updates will have to hold everyone over.

A Star Wars: The Last Jedi teaser was shown to select individuals during a recent Disney Investors’ Conference, featuring the return of Luke Skywalker and hinting at a secret mission that Finn undertakes. Finn actor John Boyega has also teased the extremely technical dialogue that will be used throughout the film, showcasing the dedication that director Rian Johnson is bringing to the franchise. Given his love of Star Wars and history as an indie auteur, it's no surprise that Johnson is taking the new gig seriously.

Still, it's heartening to hear The Last Jedi will be equal parts history and spectacle. Last Jedi costar Laura Dern echoed those sentiments during an interview with Collider to discuss her new film Wilson - where she plays Pippi alongside Woody Harrelson as the title character. While she couldn't reveal any details about The Last Jedi, Dern was more than happy to talk about Johnson's approach to filmmaking:

"To me, I’ve never seen anything like it. Comfort on an enormous movie, improvisation, “Try that, try that!” There’s a lot of people weighing in on creating character and looks, and things are so iconic, and sets, and he’s still in the world of character. “How do you feel? What do you think? How do you want it?” I mean, to everybody. But he’s just amazing, and he’ll do radically beautiful things, and I also feel like he’s one of the people I’ll work with again and again, because we just loved each other. We had dinner recently and he was telling me an idea that was just so crazy and indie and I just love that’s he’s a radical."


Transitioning from the indie world to the realm of big budget movies can be a challenging one, so it's good to hear that not only is Johnson adjusting, but bringing his skills as a more intimate director to the project. When asked whether Johnson would continue to keep operating in both spheres as he moved forward, Dern seemed to think he'd have no problem doing so:

"Oh, I think he’ll keep himself in both worlds for his whole career, very smartly."

Of course, that same line could echo Dern's career. While most audiences know her from Jurassic Park, she's spent most of her life acting in smaller indie films. With The Last Jedi, she'll be making the jump back to blockbusters after a long time away. Similarly, Harrelson has had a similar career arc. He also happens to be joining the Star Wars universe as well. He'll be playing the mentor of Han Solo in his upcoming anthology film. While Dern and Harrelson's characters will exist decades apart in the timeline, she still has a dream of how they could share screen time together in the galaxy far, far away. When a reporter mentioned both actors were now going to be in Star Wars movies, she had this to say:


"...I was like, what if someone had seen Wilson and was like, “You know what? Wilson and Pippi should go to space.” And we’re actually playing these characters in Star Wars. [laughs] That would be the ultimate."

Once Wilson comes out, we'll be very disappointed if some enterprising fan doesn't cut together a version of Dern's dream.

NEXT: Everything We Know About Star Wars: The Last Jedi (So Far)

Source: Collider

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: Episode IX (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019
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