A video has been released online featuring Kelly Marie Tran's audition for the part of Rose Tico in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Although many of the characters in The Last Jedi were previously introduced in 2015's The Force Awakens, Resistance fighter Rose was the second installment's most notable newcomer. As one of the most lucrative and popular franchises in film history, Star Wars roles are highly coveted for actors of any stature and although the actress admitted to having never previously seen a Star Wars movie, the part was eventually landed by Kelly Marie Tran - the most high-profile gig of her career by a considerable distance.
In The Last Jedi, Rose spends most of her time on screen alongside John Boyega's Finn, as the Resistance duo (with BB-8 in tow, of course) journey to casino planet Canto Bight, meet Benicio del Toro's "D.J." and get mixed up with the dastardly Captain Phasma. Throughout the course of the film, Rose and Finn's friendship slowly develops and, as is common for a role that requires strong chemistry with a specific co-star, Tran was required to take part in a "chemistry audition" alongside Boyega as part of the Star Wars audition process.
Footage from this audition - filmed roughly a year before The Last Jedi began shooting - has now been released officially release online. The short film chronicles Kelly Marie Tran's journey to a relatively unknown television actress to appearing in one of the most hotly anticipated movies of the year.
In the video, director/writer Rian Johnson confirms that "hundreds" of girls auditioned for the part of Rose but claims that Tran was most like the character he envisioned while writing the script. The audition footage itself sees Tran and Boyega acting out a scene where the duo are discussing D.J. and also features a somewhat dazed Kelly, fresh from the audition, still shocked at the prospect of joining the Star Wars universe.
Although Kelly Marie Tran may not have been too familiar with the galaxy far, far away when she signed up for The Last Jedi, it's clear from the interviews in this video that the significance of being cast as Rose was not lost upon the actress. The clip also gives some insight into how grueling the process of casting for a movie as huge as Star Wars: The Last Jedi can be, especially for John Boyega who presumably had to re-enact the same scene over and over again with a stream of different actresses.
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- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: Episode IX (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019
- Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017