After airing his concerns about a darker Luke Skywalker in Rian Johnson’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Mark Hamill now reveals he once felt the same about a similar path in Return of the Jedi.
Rounding off George Lucas’ original trilogy in 1983, Return of the Jedi is remembered for many reasons. Alongside Carrie Fisher in a gold bikini and a look at the “real” Darth Vader beneath the helmet, the film also saw Luke struggling with his parentage and a battle between his inner demons of the light and dark sides of the Force.
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While Luke never went rogue in any of the Star Wars movies, he revealed to the audiences at SXSW in Austin, Texas, that he even had his doubts about Return‘s storyline all those years ago. “I read [the script for] Jedi and thought, ‘Wait a sec! I thought I was heading toward the struggle of heading to the Dark Side. I’m in black. I have a glove. I see a trend here’,” Hamill said.
At the time, it may have come as a shock to Hamill to embrace a shadowy version of Luke, but the iconic imagery of him swinging his green lightsaber while dressed all in black has become synonymous with the final chapter of the original trilogy.
As for 2017’s reimagining of Luke, speculation went into overdrive before The Last Jedi‘s release that Hamill would have a darker role to play. Fans saw a stoic version of Luke hiding out on the rocky outcrop of Ahch-To while having shunned the Force. Hamill was so shocked by the script, he said he imagined a “new” version of Skywalker called “Jake” because he refused to believe that Luke would behave in such a manner.
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However, Johnson was the master of the big twist, lulling audiences into believing Luke was a coward who was willing to allow his own sister and the legacy of the Jedi fall under the First Order. The final arc had that big showdown on Crait and restored the Luke that audiences have come to know.
Just like with Return of the Jedi, Hamill has been outspoken on the direction that Johnson took his character. That said, in the wake of The Last Jedi, the 66-year-old actor has backtracked on his comments that doubted Luke’s character development.