After reading the script for the film, Mark Hamill told director Rian Johnson, "I pretty much fundamentally disagree with every choice you've made for this character [Luke Skywalker]. Now, having said that, I have gotten it off my chest, and my job now is to take what you've created and do my best to realize your vision."
Mark Hamill and Rian Johnson revealed at a BAFTA screening that Mark Hamill asked to play a CG character, saying that he had done it before (which wasn't true, but he really wanted to have the experience of playing a CG character). In the film he plays the character who puts money inside BB8 in the Casino scenes.
Carrie Fisher was also a well-known writer, whose services were often called upon to act as script doctor for other films. She later began declining such assignments when producers would solicit her story ideas, then hire someone else to actually change the script, and use her ideas without paying her. However, director Rian Johnson revealed that Fisher helped with the writing of the script for this film.
Daisy Ridley took her father to the set in Ireland, where the ending scene of Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) was about to be recreated. When her father met Mark Hamill, he asked him, "Who do you play, then?" Ridley admitted she was not sure if her father was joking or not.
After first completing the arduous 600-foot climb on Ireland's Skellig Michael island, Mark Hamill had hoped that he could avoid having to repeat the trek for additional scenes if he could somehow remain on the summit overnight, thus forfeiting the luxury of room service at his hotel. He suggested sleeping in a tent and 'staying in character.' However, after some inquiries were made with the Irish authorities, he was told by producer Kathleen Kennedy that he was not permitted to pitch a tent because the location is a protected UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Kelly Marie Tran did not tell anyone she was doing the movie and lied that she was doing an indie film in Canada. At one point, she got some maple syrup to bring back to her parents so they would believe she was actually in Canada.
After the breakthrough CGI that was displayed in Rogue One for recreating long gone actors, the filmmakers of this film saw fit to issue statements ahead of release, shutting down any speculations (or worries) on the possibility of such a technology being used for the late Carrie Fisher. In short, all her scenes (barring the stunts) are categorically hers, including the dialogue.
Luke Skywalker bears a strong resemblance to Obi-Wan Kenobi's appearance in the original Star Wars trilogy. In fact, Mark Hamill reprised his role in 2015 at the age of 64, while Alec Guinness was 63 when he was first cast as Obi-Wan Kenobi.
Luke Skywalker mentions "Darth Sidious" by name, the only throwback to a name that only appeared in the Prequel Trilogy (Though Darth Sidious does appear in "The Empire Strikes Back" and "Return of the Jedi," he is only referred to as Emperor Palpatine). It is likely that Luke learned the Sith title of Palpatine by conversing with the Force ghosts of Obi-Wan or Yoda sometime between "Return of the Jedi" and "The Last Jedi."
Lawrence Kasdan initially wrote a story outline for the film, but was called away to work on Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) when problems arose with that film's initial script. When Rian Johnson signed on as director, he requested to be allowed to scrap Kasdan's story and write his own script from scratch, to which the producers consented, as Kasdan's outline no longer matched up with the finished storyline of the previous film.
Director Rian Johnson admits that he moved Kylo Ren's facial injury. In Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015), Rey slices his face with her light saber, giving him a laceration that goes across the bridge of his nose. In this film, the injury has scabbed over, but is now over his right eye. Johnson says a scab over his nose did not look right. Coincidentally, the placement of the scar matches a similar injury on Anakin Skywalker, in Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith (2005).
Early filming took place with Mark Hamill and Daisy Ridley on Skellig Michael off the coast of County Kerry, Ireland, in late September 2015. On February 15, 2016, LucasFilm posted a short production-announcement video, which included some footage and behind-the-scenes shots, and which picked up immediately after the final scene of Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015). Main photography was scheduled to begin in early January 2016 but was delayed a month reportedly due to script revisions, and began on February 15.
In December 2015, the production team of this film and Rogue One (2016) went to Mexico City, Mexico looking for filming locations, specifically at Iztapalapa and Tlahuac boroughs. It was later confirmed that some scenes for both films would be filmed in Mexico City, but due to some trouble with the local government the filming was cancelled.
The location filming in Ireland was intended to follow on from the dark Skellig ending of Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015). However, the weather was unseasonably good and shooting took longer than expected.
The original release date was May 26, 2017. However, in January of 2016, the film's release was rescheduled for December 15, 2017, based on how successful Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) was releasing in December.
In keeping with a long-time series tradition, the opening shot after the text crawl shows a space vehicle flying either away from or toward the screen (in this case, several Resistance transport ships fly towards the screen).
Rian Johnson was offered the chance to direct the next film in the saga, Star Wars: Episode IX (2019) based on executive reactions to early versions of this film. Johnson turned down the offer due to the film's tight production schedule. Lucasfilm then offered him a three picture deal to create his own trilogy set in the "Star Wars" universe.
The Stormtrooper armor is slightly different from the one seen in Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015). The most striking difference can be noticed on the helmet, which has sharper contours and resembles the design of the classic Stormtroopers.
The first Star Wars film which does not take place a few years after the previous film. The film is a direct continuation of Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) and takes place shortly after Rey arrives on the island on the oceanic planet and finds Luke Skywalker and presents to him his old lightsaber.
Production designer Rick Heinrichs said in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter that the original screenplay by writer-director Rian Johnson was so ambitious that it had double the number of sets you might expect on a film like this. "The original script had about 160 sets in it, a ridiculous amount of sets. I didn't say that to Rian, because I figured on something this big he'll find that out on his own. It's a 100-day shooting schedule," says Heinrichs. "So there's more than one set a day you have to prepare for." In the end, the production settled on 125 sets on 14 stages at Pinewood Studios. "The truth is we ended up combining things and trying to be smart about how we're going to do it," says Heinrichs. "He did do some trimming and cutting. It forced him to actually cut the shoe leather, as they say, and combine things in the script as well and reduce a number of things that way."
In the original trilogy, Mark Hamill received top billing for all three films. In Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015), Harrison Ford received top billing while Hamill received second billing. Hamill received top billing once more in Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017).
In late 2017, director Rian Johnson shot down Internet rumors that Billy Dee Williams would reprise his role of Lando Calrissian in this film, stating, "He's not in the film, and it was never really something that came up. I mean, I loved that character. It would have been fun to see him, but it's just not something that ever really had a place in the story."
Carrie Fisher credited Miguel Ferrer for preparing her for her original audition for the role of Leia. Ferrer later became known for playing Agent Albert Rosenfeld in Twin Peaks (1990). Like Fisher, Ferrer ended up returning to that role decades later in Twin Peaks (2017), but also died before its premiere. Laura Dern appears in both Twin Peaks and The Last Jedi.
The Aurebesh lettering on Rose Tico's Resistance coveralls reads "GLD" and "landing officer." The same words were printed on the background alien Vober Dand's clothing in Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015), and according to the Visual Guide published for that movie, "GLD" stands for "Ground Logistics Division."
The title of this film, "The Last Jedi," was revealed on January 23, 2017. The phrase appears in the opening crawl of "The Force Awakens", making this the first time the title of a Star Wars film appeared in an opening crawl.
Second unit photography began during pre-production at Skellig Michael in Ireland on September 14, 2015, due to the difficulties of filming at that location during other seasons. It would have lasted four days, but filming was canceled for the first day due to poor weather and rough conditions.
The first middle installment of a Star Wars trilogy to include a proper space battle. Episode V only has a few scenes of a Star Destroyer chasing the Millennium Falcon, and Episode II only has a dogfight between Jango Fett and Obi-Wan Kenobi.
In January 2016, production of Episode VIII was delayed until February 2016, due to script rewrites. Additionally, filming was potentially in danger of being delayed further due to an upcoming strike between the Producers Alliance for Cinema and Television and the Broadcasting, Entertainment, Cinematograph and Theatre Union.
This is the only sequel in a Star Wars trilogy to not have a four word subtitle (ex. Attack of the Clones, Revenge of the Sith, The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi) while the first in each trilogy have three word subtitles (ex. The Phantom Menace, A New Hope, The Force Awakens) thus breaking tradition.
Features the first Star Wars soundtrack to incorporate songs from outside the Star Wars universe: "Aquarela do Brasil," better known in English as "Brazil," by Ary Barroso, and "The Long Goodbye," by John Williams and Johnny Mercer. "The Long Goodbye" was the title song from the the Robert Altman film, which was written by Leigh Brackett, who wrote the original draft of the screenplay for The Empire Strikes Back. (In the first Star Wars film, George Lucas used "In The Mood" by Glenn Miller as a temporary track during the Mos Eisley Cantina scene, which John Williams reworked to the familiar "Cantina Band" theme.)
Prior to her death in December 2016, Carrie Fisher had been expected to appear in Episode IX. Though Fisher's family granted the rights to use recent footage of Fisher for Star Wars: Episode IX, Fisher will not appear in the film and Lucasfilm will not digitally generate new footage of her.
It was understood in the script, though not necessarily in the final film, that General Leia Organa had begun training as a Jedi shortly after the events of Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983). Motherhood, and later, discord in the Galactic Senate caused her to cut short her tutoring. This explains how she is able to use the Force to create a bubble of air around her and return to her ship after the bridge of the Raddus is destroyed. An entry in the canonical tie-in Visual Dictionary confirmed this as well.
News of Yoda's return in this film leaked out, somewhat ironically, after reporters asked Frank Oz if he had any plans to return to the "Star Wars" series. Oz remarked that he had signed legal documents barring him from confirming or denying the answer to their questions which confirmed his involvement.
It has been speculated by fans that Rey is actually the long lost daughter of Luke Skywalker. Being the prankster that he is, Mark Hamill made a comment during Star Wars celebration 2017, accidentally referring to Daisy Ridley as "my dau... I mean my colleague."
This is the first live-action movie in the franchise to break with the tradition to have a member of the Skywalker family in the closing shot. All previous movies included either Anakin, Luke and/or Leia in the final shot. Although Luke and Leia feature in the final scene, the closing shot only shows one of the young slave boys on the casino planet Canto Bight.
There are many clues suggesting that Luke is never really on Crait. He has a shorter, darker hairstyle and beard that matches his appearance in the flashback scenes. It is established that there is no way in or out of the base (A character even asks how Luke got in.). When he confronts Kylo Ren, he uses his original blue lightsaber (that once belonged to Anakin) instead of the green one he used in the flashbacks. Furthermore, this same blue lightsaber was destroyed in Snoke's throne room. Finally, Luke's X-Wing is shown to be underwater on Ahch-To, and it is implied that he has no way off the planet.
Contrary to belief, director Rian Johnson confirmed the iconic "I have a bad feeling about this" line was indeed in the final cut of the movie. At the beginning of the film Poe and BB-8 approach the Dreadnaught and BB-8 beeps, to which Poe replies "Happy beeps, buddy". It is here that the droid mentions the line that has been included in every film up to this point, though it is difficult to understand without subtitles or translations.
Snoke's death marks the second time a character is cut in half in a Star Wars movie, after Darth Maul's death in "The Phantom Menace" (It is the third time if you count Obi-Wan's death in "A New Hope," but his body disappears instantly. Both Maul and Snoke's deaths are more graphic, with both halves of their bodies physically separating).
Luke's final scene resembles that of the scene in Episode IV while he is looking at the Tatooine suns, before embarking on his adventure. However in Episode VIII, Luke looks at the two suns of Ahch-To, in what could be his final appearance in the Star Wars Saga.
On the ITV Good Morning show, Holly Willoughby accidently confirmed Yoda to be in the film while doing a video interview with John Boyega. He instantly looked shocked and Holly tried to cover her mistake by saying the news was "out there"
The only film of the Star Wars Skywalker saga that doesn't contain a lightsaber duel. While lightsabers are used often in the film, there are no lightsaber on lightsaber fights. The only time you see a pair of sabres clash, is in the Luke/Kylo flashback.
Not including Rogue One, this is the first Star Wars Film that has a character from the film saying the title, as Luke Skywalker says the line "I will not be The Last Jedi." Some of the titles were referenced in other films of the series but none specifically stated the title in their direct films.
As mentioned in the film at one point, Admiral Ackbar, famous for his "It's a Trap!" line in Return of the Jedi, was among those killed in the explosion on the frigate when Kylo Ren's Tie Fighter squadron bombed the bridge.
Maz Kanata is seen over a hologram while in the heat of battle. She wears a rocketpack/jetpack and as she turns, you can see the details more clearly. This pack is designed to mirror the jetpack that is worn in the Disney film The Rocketeer.
Fin is arrested on the Casino planet on the charge referred to as "27-B/6" A 27-B/6 is also the required paperwork needed to make repairs to domestic duct work in the dystopian movie "Brazil" by Terry Gilliam.
There is a typo in the opening crawl ("Only General Leia Organa's band of RESISTANCE fighters stand against the rising tyranny..."). "Stand" should be "stands," as the noun ("band") is singular. "Fighters" is within a prepositional phrase and does not determine the conjugation of the verb "stand."
Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker becomes the third top-billed actor, and fourth top-billed character, to die on screen. Liam Neeson and Harrison Ford both died by being impaled on a lightsaber. Ewan McGregor received top billing for playing Obi-Wan Kenobi, but Alec Guinness played out his death. Luke and Obi-Wan both vanish, becoming one with the Force.