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TOPIC: Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel

Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 6 days ago #89427

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This may have a better home somewhere else, but we don't yet have a Rian Trilogy subcategory, I'll post it here. I wanted to bring this up because I feel like this group can develop some excellent discussion from this topic, as it's been rolling around my head for a little bit now and a recent interview with Rian Johnson brought it back to the forefront of my mind. So, let's get into it.

So, Rian Johnson's Star Wars trilogy. Other than the fact that it will take place somewhere completely different from anything we've seen thusfar in the films and divergent from the Skywalker timeline entirely, we know next to nothing. Up until now, I've been assuming the best. TLJ was average at best, this can be admitted, but I mostly see that as the fault of the story team for not crafting an overarching story arc about what J.J. Abrams set up, which would've been a far better way to handle the Sequel trilogy in my opinion, but that's just me.

In my mind's eye, Rian can do anything he wants. He can invent a brand new group of Jedi on Tython, far from the danger of the First Order. He can craft a Western-style trilogy that explores Hutt Space, or he can take a trip into the Unknown Regions to explore the Chiss Ascendancy.

But as of now, he's not going to do any of that, because it doesn't seem that he even knows about the EU, stories that would be completely unrelated to what we've seen already in the films. Check out this article from Cinemablend, where Rian is interviewed about a 'major challenge that he has with his new trilogy.'

First off, it needs to be noted that Rian doesn't currently have any kind of plan, not even the beginnings of one, not a simple story arc, nothing. It seems to me that there's something else going on there, because Kathleen just kind of handed him a trilogy before TLJ was even released.

But that's not even the biggest problem here. Rather it wouldn't be as bad if that was the extent of the issue. Rian has a few years, I'm sure he could come up with something that was both inspired by previous EU stories or completely new. The biggest problem is that he seems to think that he's the first one to ever do what he's doing.

To be fair, we haven't gotten a story completely detached from what we know in the movies yet. However, his question of 'what is Star Wars without the iconography' has already been answered, in material such as....drumroll please...The Old Republic. The only real carry over between the movies and KOTOR/II/SWTOR, among other media, were the planets and the Force.

Rian Johnson's problem here is that he seems to think that he's starting completely fresh, which he isn't, or at least, he doesn't have to. He has YEARS worth of old material to look at and absorb, and YEARS of time to come up with a compelling story that really sings to what Star Wars really means. All he has to do is research things that have already been done and use them to inspire new things. It seems like he's trying to completely reinvent the wheel, and it's highly unnecessary.

So, here's what I personally think Rian shouod do. He needs to go quiet about his new trilogy, for one. Quit running his mouth and trying to do again what has already been done. Then, after he's had a couple years to check out some older material and write a good, strong, STAR WARS story, he starts to release trickles of information, maybe concept art here or there, before hitting us with a 30 second teaser six months before the movie's release. Just my thoughts.

Thoughts?


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Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 6 days ago #89439

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You do realize that, canonically, the EU (now called the "Legends" timeline) doesn't exist, and he doesn't have to read or acknowledge any of it, right? I mean, that was a huge deal for some Star Wars fans a few years back, after Disney purchased LucasFilm and announced that they were doing episodes 7, 8 & 9. One of the first things they did was appoint someone to decide what was and wasn't counted in the film canon, and it basically came down to this: Canonically, only the live action movies, Clone Wars movie and TV show, Rebels and most books and comics written under strict guidelines since April 25, 2014 count as canon. Nothing else does. So, he doesn't need to read anything in the Legends timeline, nor does he even need to acknowledge its existence.

Here's what we know: LucasFilm President Kathleen Kennedy greelit him to develop a trilogy separate from the other films. By definition, he's going to develop it and therefore wouldn't have a plan going in. This actually happens more often than you think, especially with big properties like Star Wars. LucasFilm and Disney want to keep riding that Star Wars train, which is a massive money train. However, often many projects that get into this level of pre-production never actually see the light of day, because at this stage it's not costing them that much money. Basically, it's a "come up with an idea and we'll make it" kind of deal. That's why so many concepts are currently being developed by someone for LucasFilm. Realistically, they may only get a movie or two or, if they're lucky, a trilogy out of all of it. But, they need something in the pipe to keep Star Wars going after episode 9 and the other stuff they have in the works. They also have a live action TV show in development that may or may not see the light of day.
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Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 6 days ago #89448

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Of course EU no longer exists. I'm by no means a fan of a lot of the EU stuff, and when the deal originally happened, me being young and naive that I was, I didn't really care one way or the other (even now, I definitely prefer how streamlined and malleable the new canon is in comparison to old). But there was a lot of stuff that I came to learn about and love since then. Rogue Planet, the Jedi Apprentice series and the Old Republic come to mind.

Now, I'm not saying that the old lore needs to be required reading for Rian. If he thinks that he can whip something up that won't be a trainwreck or not completely bomb all on his own, then more power to him. I'm just saying that he doesn't need to necessarily reinvent the wheel. He has the option to look back and consider what makes Star Wars special without all the commercialized iconography that everyone immediately recognizes. I know I didn't come off that way originally, and I apologize for that.

The problem with the way this trilogy has been presented thusfar is that Rian seems to be dead set on making it happen, thanks to all the commercialism we've already heard. Even if it's a totally hypothetical project at this stage (which makes vastly more sense as of now), Rian is acting like he's Star Wars Jesus or something; again, reinventing the wheel. I want to see this trilogy succeed as much as the next guy, but if there's a distinct possibility that it might fall through the floor and never come to fruition, then we shouldn't have gotten any information about it whatsoever until there was a solid plan.


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Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 5 days ago #89455

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Actually, I'm reading the Jedi Academy trilogy right now, I'm on Dark Apprentice, the second book. It's good reading. I just mentally separate that continuity from the movies. Though, I'm a Star Trek fan, and their licensed works don't count towards the TV and movie continuity. So, I'm used to it.

Though, there is a good thing to the split continuity. It means the Star Wars Holiday Special is no longer canon. ;)
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Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 2 days ago #89629

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I think you can indeed forget the fact that Rian Johnson (or any other director making a new Star Wars movie) is going to pay any attention to the old Legends stuff; like Disney said, the old EU is no longer canon and even though they might occasionally put stuff into the official canon (characters like Thrawn and Rukh, places like Nar Shaddaa, Malachor and Shantipole, or ships like TIE Defenders, Hammerhead Corvettes or Interdictors) it seems they only put it in books, comics or at best the Rebels tv-show so far - I doubt that they'll want to take the risk of putting it into the movies out of fear of alienating newer fans who haven't read all the old EU stuff.

Now don't get me wrong; I freakin' cheered when I saw a Hammerhead corvette show up in Rogue One making me instantly think KOTOR could be something for in the future - just not as the story of Revan.
Sure one can make the argument for instance that Ben Solo and Rey function as a sort of Jacen and Jaina Solo, but I get the feel that Disney doesn't want to build on the old concepts or make movies out of them, because they do want to indeed re-invent the wheel; as Last Jedi showed, they want to see how they can make Star Wars feel new so that it has a longer shelf life than if it were just the stuff that we've read before.

So I doubt we'll ever get a Revan or Bane story, but we might get a movie set in the Old Republic era. Same goes for your ideas of Tython, the Chiss and the Hutt's; I'm sure that we might get movies trying out the concept of a Star Wars underworld run by mob bosses (although I get the feel the Solo movie might already cover that), but we'll never get the actual stuff that it's in the books, comics, Legends/EU of old.

Besides, I don't really get the fact why it's so important to get inspiration from those things; during the time before the Prequels, there was tons of stuff that was introduced into the Expanded Universe and George Lucas maybe used things like Coruscant, Aayla Secura and some other names or places or ideas, but he always stated that he didn't read the EU and that (to him) it had already always been 'Legends', as he saw his own vision as the one taking the lead;
'Once Vader dies, he doesn’t come back to life, the Emperor doesn’t get cloned and Luke doesn’t get married…'

So I don't get why so many fans are so in need of Disney using the stuff from the EU/Legends as a template, whilst George Lucas did exactly the same thing; I mean, I remember how annoyed I got when he turned the Mandalorians from warriors to a peaceful planet in TCW, but ever since Disney bought Lucasfilm and I've had time to process it, I just see it as that; alternate universes that I can enjoy, but don't need to complement each other. Thrawn in the books will always be more awesome in the books, so that's the version I prefer - he doesn't have to be exactly the same in Star Wars Rebels for there to be consistency.

So I prefer if Rian just does his own thing instead of looking to the comics or novels and adapt that into a movie; sure it could be awesome, but I think the reason that Marvel and DC do that is because they started out as comics - Star Wars has always been an original idea not based on any books or comics (older concepts sure, like Flash Gordon and the likes, but it's always been movies first).
Instead of doing something that's been done before in a book or comic or game; go nuts and give us something new :cheer:
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Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 2 days ago #89630

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I think it's a great time to be a Star Wars fan, no matter what. I really like The Force Awakens, but some people did nothing but complain that all it was was a rehash of the original film, and cried for something different. So, they went completely different with The Last Jedi, and I really like that one too. But, then more people complained that they went too different. So, you're never going to please everyone. I think rehashing stories from the EU would be a waste of time and would offer nothing new to the SW universe, which is ever expanding and evolving. Plus, they'll never do a 100% faithful adaptation of an existing story and will probably change a bunch of stuff that will still anger fans of that story. I think Rian's new trilogy should break new ground for sure, just as The Last Jedi did. Sure, some people won't like it, but that's just how it goes. I want new settings and new characters, but with that good ol' Star Wars feel. A great example of how to do this is Rogue One. Rogue One introduced us to a whole new group of characters, with only a few familiar ones appearing as cameos. Plus, the planets they were visiting were mostly new, only Yavin 4 was revisited, but that's because it had to be. Yet, at no time was it ever unclear that we were watching a Star Wars film. It had that Star Wars look and feel to it. It had blasters, starships, hyperdrive, droids, talk of Jedi and The Force. To me, that's what it takes to make Star Wars, just that feeling that you're in that universe. So, bring us something new that's clearly Star Wars. There's a whole galaxy out there to explore, and hundreds (or more) races, and thousands of planets, just so much to work with.
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Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 1 day ago #89676

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scifidude79 wrote:
I think it's a great time to be a Star Wars fan, no matter what. I really like The Force Awakens, but some people did nothing but complain that all it was was a rehash of the original film, and cried for something different. So, they went completely different with The Last Jedi, and I really like that one too. But, then more people complained that they went too different. So, you're never going to please everyone.
That is throwing some truth-bombs right there ;)
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Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 1 day ago #89681

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I don't want to come off as saying that Rian needs to just re-hash the EU, that's not what I'm trying to say at all. What I'm saying is that he's got a galaxy of information and lore that has been mentioned or nodded at here or there, but could be taken in a completely different direction by Rian.

I want Rian to go crazy, create a new story, whatever. But he seems to think that he needs to be entertaining an audience here by engaging in interviews about it. He should just keep whatever project he's working on under complete wraps until he's had time to write a story, maybe use some existing elements to add flavor to it (like what Lucas did with the Prequels), and then he can start doing interviews about it. His films are years off, the last thing he should be doing is preaching about them like he's got some master plan, which we know that he doesn't, or it's highly improbable at the very least. He should just trust that what he'll come up with will be pleasing and stop sugarcoating it.

Those are just the vibes I got from his interview, so they are my personal thoughts.


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Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 1 day ago #89686

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Usually, the more people yammer about a project, the lesa they have. Though, after the backlash from The Last Jedi, (despite its $1.333 billion box office) he may also be gauging reactions to ideas to get feedback. Maybe he wants to do something that hardcore fans will enjoy more than you did TLJ.

Though, I haven't seen or heard anything from him as I don't follow entertainment news.
Last Edit: 1 week 1 day ago by scifidude79.
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Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 22 hours ago #89691

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Ryan is basically going to use the SW franchise/brand to develop a whole new generation of pseudo-SW related stories. Disney is there to make money. I will be disappointed if I am expecting a new Skywalker, Vader, Empire series. It will never be that. Skywalker is dead. The only thing that may connect is whether the concept of the Force (Light and Dark) continues in Ryan's new universe. If there is none of that (i.e. no Force), then it ain't SW. Let's see.
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Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 6 hours ago #89708

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scifidude79 wrote:
Though, I haven't seen or heard anything from him as I don't follow entertainment news.
Me neither, but I would think that perhaps right now he's just finishing an entire after-release promotion tour? Like I figure Disney wants him out there doing interviews to remind people that TLJ is out on Blu-Ray and that there's more coming in the future - I'm sure that once the Solo movie drops, Rian will leave the limelight and for instance Ron Howard and others will start showing up more, prepping people for IX.
Eddlyss64 wrote:
I don't want to come off as saying that Rian needs to just re-hash the EU, that's not what I'm trying to say at all.
My apologies then, I'm sorry I misread your comments; I getcha better now then, yeah - there's stuff that he could reference or use as inspiration, he doesn't indeed need to start from scratch.
It's just that I thought you were saying he needed to use those things, instead of him just 'remembering' he can use those things.
I mean, I totally agree with that notion, but perhaps I would go beyond that notion of just EU/Legends as inspiration; the best artists steal, they don't copy - Rian should look to whatever he can get his hands on to get an idea that would be awesome.
Mean, just look at the Solo movie; the train heist is as old as time, but I can definitely see the Firefly influences in the trailer so far.
If Rian is indeed going to do stuff, let him look to the EU/Legends for ideas and concepts, but not stop there; let him look to other movies, sci-fi and fantasy tales to make something awesome.
(in his defense I have to say though that he already seems to do that to a great degree; seeing the nods to older movies or influences in The Last Jedi makes you realize Rian Johnson is like one of the biggest movie g33ks there is).
Eddlyss64 wrote:
But he seems to think that he needs to be entertaining an audience here by engaging in interviews about it. He should just keep whatever project he's working on under complete wraps until he's had time to write a story, maybe use some existing elements to add flavor to it (like what Lucas did with the Prequels), and then he can start doing interviews about it. His films are years off, the last thing he should be doing is preaching about them like he's got some master plan, which we know that he doesn't, or it's highly improbable at the very least. He should just trust that what he'll come up with will be pleasing and stop sugarcoating it.
I agree with you, but again, it does feel somewhat weird as George Lucas did the same thing when he just finished A New Hope and Empire Strikes Back; back then there was talk of 12 movies, then 9, then eventually the Prequels did happen, but then when he started announcing real life action series and all the likes, I became more careful trusting him.
Mean, it's the same how I feel about Disney; sure whenever they announce something new I am excited, but I don't set my hopes up - for all I know the Game of Thrones writers won't make anything and Rian's trilogy indeed becomes just 1 movie, who knows.
Eddlyss64 wrote:
Those are just the vibes I got from his interview, so they are my personal thoughts.
I see, I figure we differ on that vibe then indeed; I can definitely see how you think he might be tooting his own horn without having anything to show for it yet, but I just see it as something many directors, actors and other artists have done.
I mean, there's many stories of George Lucas having this entire book of movies that he wanted to make when Star Wars was done, but those were never made. Think of all the talk of Halo being done by Peter Jackson or Spielberg or The Hobbit by Guillermo del Toro; the movie industry is a fickle place, so whatever is said one day is no guarantee for the future.
Like said, I'm sure Rian is thinking about ideas in his head, but for now is just 'obligated' to do these interviews and tries to say what people want to hear (mean, I figure it's both Disney as well as news sites wanting to hear from him after the entire split of the fanbase ;)
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Rian's Trilogy and the Invention of the Wheel 1 week 4 hours ago #89711

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Yeah, there's a lot of stuff that has to come together just to make a movie. Movie projects that people have been excited about have died quiet deaths due to never getting that "right" screenplay, or other factors. Obviously, Kathleen Kennedy was impressed enough with Rian's work on TLJ to sign him to a deal before the movie was released. And, obviously, the GoT writers can write, but a lot of stuff still has to come together to even get one movie made, to say nothing of a trilogy.
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