Luke Skywalker may finally be getting more screen time in The Last Jedi than he did in The Force Awakens, but that's not the case for everyone, as Maz Kanata will actually have a smaller part than her previous appearance. Thanks to Entertainment Weekly's new cover for The Last Jedi, a bounty of information on the eighth episode of the Star Wars saga has been revealed, including new details about Luke, Rey, Finn, Poe and Leia, Snoke, and more.
The final reveal from EW finally addresses a character we've seen very little of in marketing for The Last Jedi - Maz Kanata. While the motion capture character brought to life by Lupita Nyong'o only made her first appearance in 2015's The Force Awakens, it was immediately clear she held a significant place in the larger Star Wars story. Not only is she on familiar terms with the characters of the original trilogy, even possessing Luke's old lightsaber - before it was discovered by Rey - but she's also over 1,000 years old, meaning she's one of the few characters that can provide any sort of insight on the larger galactic history, and not just the Clone Wars and rise and fall of the Empire, but hundreds of years before that even - a time in Star Wars history fans have hardly been exposed to yet.
The good news is that Maz has an "important moment in the spotlight" and may even "deliver important information," but unfortunately that's all going to happen with a smaller part than her last appearance, meaning her full wealth of knowledge may stay on hold until Episode IX, or even a book or animated show. Hopefully what she does share sheds some light on exactly how she obtained Luke's lightsaber in The Force Awakens, a story she already said was best saved for "another time."
Even though she doesn't have much screen time, director Rian Johnson was thrilled to have her in the movie:
"She has a smaller part in this than she has in The Force Awakens, but it’s a really fun part, and Lupita is so awesome, I’m just happy I got to work with her... This was my first time working with mo-cap characters and working with actors in that way, I feel like I got such an incredible education watching Lupita work."
Fans looking forward to seeing more of the little orange alien might be disappointed by this news, but with so much happening in The Last Jedi, it's important the story stays focused on the big characters. Besides, even Yoda, who's role Maz's is understandably compared to, ultimately didn't have much screentime in Empire Strikes Back, and even less in Return of the Jedi, yet his mark was clearly left on the franchise.
- 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