With their first two films now in the bag, it's clear already that Lucasfilm and Disney are planning on taking the Star Wars universe in directions it has never gone before. For many fans too, one of the best aspects of both The Force Awakens and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was the films' introduction of two new, strong female characters into the pop culture mainstream with Daisy Ridley's Force-sensitive Rey, and Felicity Jones' rebellious Jyn Erso. The latter of those two will likely only be seen in her respective standalone film, but has already made a major impact both within the canon of the Star Wars universe and with fans everywhere.
Not much is known about the overall creative process behind Rogue One as of yet, including how and when in the writing process characters like Jyn were first created. Her film inspirations have already been made clear from those involved with the film, and in a new interview, some interesting new details have been revealed regarding where Jyn's name first came from.
While speaking with Yahoo! Movies, the Chief Creative Officer of Lucasfilm's Industrial Light & Magic effects house, John Knoll, revealed that it was actually he who first pitched the idea for Rogue One to Lucasfilm chief Kathleen Kennedy, and where, or who, it was that he got the idea for Jyn's name from:
“I wanted a really strong, smart, and active female character as the lead of this movie. I have three daughters, and they were all growing up, and they were all young when I was working on the prequels. I felt like Star Wars could really use another good strong smart and decisive female character. My youngest daughter is Jane, and my wife is Jen, so [Jyn] is sort of mashup of them. And growing up my aunt was Aunt Ginny, [short] for Virginia, so there’s a little bit of that, too. It’s a mix up of a lot of my favorite women in my life.”
Now, this certainly isn't the first time that a Star Wars character's name has come from a family member or close associate of one of the film's creative execs. Just last year alone, J.J. Abrams revealed that the last name for Oscar Isaac's brash Poe Dameron was the same as his assistant, Morgan, and judging by how close to the characters the filmmakers must become while making the movies, it likely won't be the last time that something like this happens either. It's also to both Abrams and Knoll's credit that Jyn Erso and Poe Dameron, sound remarkably perfect for the Star Wars universe.
For many fans, the recent push to increase the amount of ethnic diversity and strong female characters in a franchise that has always had a rich and strong history in both regards is an exciting one. It's a trend that looks to be continuing in both director Rian Johnson's Star Wars: Episode VIII, which has added actors like Benicio del Toro and newcomer Kelly Marie Tran, and the studio's still untitled young Han Solo movie. So while both Rogue One and The Force Awakens have elicited divisive responses from fans the past two years, there's no denying the new sense of life that's running throughout the entire Star Wars fandom once again, and the exciting new directions it looks like Disney and Lucasfilm are committed to taking the films in.
Source: Yahoo! Movies
- Star Wars: Rogue One / Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016) release date: Dec 16, 2016
- 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