For Star Wars fans, one of the most persistent questions leading up to the release of The Last Jedi is “what has Luke Skywalker been up to since Return of the Jedi?”
Yes, there have been plenty of novels written about the character over the years but, Disney has declared those stories to no longer be canon. So, in regards to the movies, where has he been?
To prepare for his return in The Last Jedi, actor Mark Hamill came up with a very tragic backstory for Luke’s post empire life. He explained his process to Entertainment Weekly.
“Actors like backstories. They want to know motivation and all those things, and it’s such a blank slate,” he said. “You know, if you look at it intellectually, I realized that it’s not my story anymore and so what [Luke] did or did not do in the intervening years aren’t really important to the audience at this point, but I have to work it out for myself.”
Hamill decided that Luke had fallen in love with a single mom and left the Jedi Order for a while.
“I wrote lots and lots of scenarios. I made notes that he fell in love with a woman who was a widow and had this young child,” he said. “He left the Jedi to raise this young child and marry this woman. And the child got hold of a lightsaber and accidentally killed himself.”
We have to guess that it would be sometime after this incident that he renews his life as a Jedi Master and begins training young padawans, which leads to the tragedy with his nephew Kylo Ren.
Hamill stresses that none of this is part of the actual movie’s story and was just something he used for his own performance. However, he did consult writer/director Rian Johnson to make sure he was on the right emotional track for the character.
“It’s nothing to do with the story, but when I think about gun violence and you read these tragic stories of kids getting hold of their parents’ guns and killing a sibling or themselves, I mean, I had to go to really dark places to get where Luke needed to be for this story,” he said.
“I sort of tested out some of my ideas just to make sure I wasn’t in conflict with anything,” Hamill continued. “He [Johnson] was really nurturing in that regard, encouraging me to find ways to justify the actions in this movie. But like I say, that little story I told about Luke leaving the Jedi and getting married, that’s not officially what happens.”
Star Wars: The Last Jedi flies into theaters Dec. 15 and stars Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver, Gwendoline Christie, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Lupita Nyong’o, Kelly Marie Tran, Laura Dern, Benicio Del Toro, Peter Mayhew, Anthony Daniels, Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher.
Source: Entertainment Weekly