Laura Dern has had a long and successful career, having been nominated for two Academy Awards for her work in Rambling Rose and Wild. She’s also appeared in films like Mask, The Fault In Our Stars, and The Master. Oscar Isaac’s career has grown exponentially in recent years. His film work covers a wide range of genres. He’s appeared in films like Inside Llewyn Davis, A Most Violent Year, and Ex Machina. He hit mainstream recognition when he was cast as Poe Dameron in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Oscar Isaac is reprising his role of Poe and Laura Dern joins him as Admiral Holdo in the upcoming Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which will open in theaters on December 15, 2017.
Screen Rant got a chance to talk to Laura Dern and Oscar Isaac on press day, where we discussed how Poe grows as a character throughout the course of The Last Jedi, how Admiral Holdo’s point of view differs from Poe’s and General Leia Organa’s point of view in addressing the First Order, and how difficult is it to play a character in a trilogy when you don’t know what’s going to happen next.
SR: Oscar, your character, Poe, seems like he is the face of the Resistance. What challenges is he going to face in this upcoming film and how does he grow as a character?
Laura Dern: But don’t say anything.
Oscar Isaac: Without saying anything about the story. Well he’s, the one thing that he knows how to do gets taken away from him. Which is, you know, getting his X.-Wing and going out there and fighting. And so, he finds himself in a situation that’s very frustrating because he wants to help but doesn’t know how he’s going to do it and on top of that he gets a new boss played by the wonderful, exquisite, Laura Dern.
Laura Dern: Awww.
Oscar Isaac: And he doesn’t really see eye to eye with her. Literally, because he’s very much shorter. But, you know, and so there’s a lot of friction there because there’s things that he wants to do. The way he wants to attack. The way he wants to resist is not the way that that seems to be the wisest way to resist, or at least not from my from Admiral Holdo’s point of view, which you can talk more about. And so, that’s his basic conflict there. How can you put those two ideas together to fight but also to survive?
SR: Right. Now with Holdo’s character, the question I have is, do you have a different opinion with Poe and Leia, but you have the same goals just in a different way going about it?
Laura Dern: I will not completely answer that question. Because I think part of the journey of that story, like many of the stories, is that each character is wrestling with the dilemma. I think that the goal of the resistance is intact, but there are new players that have come to help lead the way. And so, what our conflict is, and what side we’re on, and if we’re on the same side, I think it is more fun to kind of watch unfold.
SR: Have you guys read any fan theory that was right about your characters?
Oscar Isaac: Yes.
SR: Really? Interesting. How about yourself?
Laura Dern: That you have great hair. (Laughs) Poe and Oscar both have great hair. Holdo and Laura also have a good…
Oscar Isaac: Also have fantastic hair.
Laura Dern: Thank you. May not be purple but I really like it.
SR: Is it harder playing a character were you don’t know where that character ends up in the last Episode, Episode IX? Because the script is still being written right now.
Oscar Isaac: Yeah, yeah. This is the first time that I’ve dealt with that. I guess, you know, maybe in T.V. that happens a bit more where, you know, that there’s other episodes coming up that haven’t been written yet. But I haven’t I haven’t dealt with that before. And so, that was a little bit strange to, even starting this one, to come on this one and be like, okay, I kind of see where this is going but I don’t have a total sense of how Rian sees it and kind of figuring out how Poe changes. But the story in itself, although it is a continuation, is the middle chapter, its whole own movie. It really stands up as its own thing and there is a sense of an arc that gets fulfilled in this story. I feel really for every character, and sure, you can see that it will be going into something else. But I mean, yeah. I have no idea really where it can go. I have some sense but you know that’s the amazing thing about collaborating on a movie, you know, Is that you’ve got all these different artists that are coming together to create the story.