Rian Johnson to Star Wars Diversity Haters: 'Fuck 'Em'

In a scant six weeks, there will be a new Star Wars film, The Rise of Skywalker. Yet folks are still talking about the last installment, 2017’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, specifically asking writer-director Rian Johnson about fan backlash to the diverse cast of characters he put on screen. Maybe his latest response will settle the matter once and for all: “Fuck ‘em.”

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No, really, that’s what he said. During a Q&A with actor Chris Evans following a screening of their new film Knives Out at the WIRED25 conference Saturday night in San Francisco, Johnson said that while he’s mostly had positive interactions with Star Wars fans, “if someone is responding to diversity negatively, fuck ‘em.”Johnson went on to note that just because someone didn’t like his film doesn’t mean they didn’t like its diverse cast and that fighting over what should happen in a Star Wars movie is just part of the culture around the franchise.
Indeed, fans in some corners have reacted poorly to Johnson’s movie. The Last Jedi’s audience score on Rotten Tomatoes is 44 percent, and after it was announced that Johnson would be creating a new Star Wars trilogy of his own, fans launched a Change.org petition to try to stop it. Johnson says that while he does hear some of the negativity, “95 percent of my interactions on Twitter are absolutely lovely and constructive and wonderful with Star Wars fans. Star Wars fans are the best fans in the world.”

Johnson added, “I think the fandom has to take a stand against getting defined by a very small slice of it that does not represent the lion’s share.”

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