Turns out its not just co-writer Chris Terrio explaining the choices made in “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” in the wake of the film’s release.
The film’s editor Maryann Brandon has been discussing the film as well in an interview with The Huffington Post, talking about the decisions that led to the final Skywalker Saga film becoming what it is. In the process, she answers various questions left lingering that the film simply doesn’t answer.
Brandon admits some she doesn’t know herself, such as who was Rey’s grandmother, while other scenes were more up in the air throughout production. The Rey and Kylo kiss went back and forth with a lot of “should they/shouldn’t they” questions before ultimately deciding they should.
The big question, how was Palpatine resurrected, was ultimately only explained in the film with a throwback line and a visual of clones (a shot which also explains Snoke). Brandon confirms the original version had “little more information about it, what was keeping [Palpatine] alive” but they cut it because “we felt we didn’t want to clutter the film up with things you didn’t need to know.”
She adds: “It was kind of a delicate balance and went back and forth a lot about how much we wanted to reveal. Some scenes changed quite a bit, the way that we wanted to present it to the audience. In the end, we ended up showing a lot less of it than we started with.”
With Snoke they deliberately kept that to a single visual shot: “I just think that came up as a visual effect that we thought would be really fun for an audience, to create a visual that would tell that whole story.”
Then there’s the final scene with Jannah and Lando, was he helping her find her parents or was he hitting on her. Brandon says the latter option never occurred to the film crew: “I don’t think it ever occurred to any of us that he was hitting on her. I think it was always fatherly, you know, help you find your way home. Yeah, it never went that way.”
Separately, Brandon has confirmed to ComicBook.com that despite the speculation, the film’s final shot wasn’t recycled though was shot around the same time they shot the Pasaana sequence with ILM then doing a lost of the work on it.
Brandon also confirmed to The Rough Cut podcast that the production schedule was shorter than they would have liked, three months less than ‘Force Awakens,’ and the final cut of the film was delivered at the last second. As for the reviews that label it a fan-service film, she agrees: “Look, sure, it’s fan service and if you didn’t service the fans, it would be, ‘Oh, he didn’t go along with the history of ‘Star Wars’ and what it all means.'”
“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” is in cinemas now and has pushed past the $400 million mark domestically.