Rian Johnson Explains What Inspired The Last Jedi’s Battering Ram

I enjoyed Star Wars: The Last Jedi even more than I’d expected to, and one of my favorite sequences was the ‘siege’ on Crait. It felt classically swashbuckling, with the heroes cornered with their backs against the wall and the villains advancing upon them with all their might. If you recall, the most threatening weapon in this sequence was what looked like a miniaturized Death Star laser, acting as some kind of bunker buster technology.

Now, in an interview with IGN, Rian Johnson has explained the cinematic influence for the weapon: the 1981 ABC miniseries Masada. And no, I’d never heard of it either. Apparently, after the success of Roots, ABC produced a number of historical miniseries marketed as “ABC Novels for Television.”

Masada tells a loosely fictional account of the Ad 73 Roman siege of the Masada citadel in Israel – which famously ended with a Roman victory. However, when the Romans entered the fortress,
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