Daisy Ridley: Rey could have been the daughter of Obi-Wan Kenobi

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SPOILERS for The Rise of Skywalker.

Daisy Ridley appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live two nights ago, which featured guest host Josh Gad. She was promoting her new film, Chaos Walking, but of course Gad asked her about the Star Wars trilogy she was part of. First, let me give some background: I wanted to cover this because it goes to the huge criticisms of the most recent trilogy (Episodes VII-IX). So much of the trilogy was dictated by the studio’s asinine schedule constraints. Kathleen Kennedy (who was in charge of Star Wars property) only wanted to hire white bros, most of whom had little experience. Those white bros gleefully marginalized the characters of color within the franchise, like John Boyega and Kelly-Marie Tran. All of this connects to my central criticism of this trilogy: at no point did Kathleen Kennedy sit down with JJ Abrams, Rian Johnson and George Lucas to map out the actual story they wanted to tell. No one, at any point, knew the end point for the story or how they were going to get there. It was always a half-assed money grab with no concern for the STORY.

One of the main problems stemming from this lack of narrative outline was the issue of Rey and her parentage. Star Wars is a nine-episode saga about the Skywalker family, except when it’s not. JJ Abrams ended up “fixing” the issues Rian Johnson introduced by making Rey into Palpatine’s granddaughter. Stupid. So… Daisy revealed to Josh Gad that there was some conversation about connecting Rey to another Jedi.

Daisy Ridley revealed that Rey was supposed to have a connection an entirely different character in Star Wars. During her appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! with guest host Josh Gad, the 28-year-old actress opened up about her character’s ancestry and shared that it was actually Obi-Wan Kenobi she was supposed to be a descendant of. As fans know, it was revealed that Rey was a descendant of Emperor Palpatine.

“At the beginning, there was toying with, like, an Obi-Wan connection,” she explained. “There were like different versions.”

However, when J.J. Abrams came back to the franchise to direct The Rise of Skywalker, he decided he liked the Palpatine connection better.

“It came to Episode IX, and J.J. pitched me the film and was like, ‘Oh yeah, Palpatine’s granddaddy,’” Daisy shared. “And I was like, ‘Awesome.’ And then, two weeks later, he was like, ‘Oh, we’re not sure.’ So, it kept changing. So then, even while filming, I wasn’t sure what the answer was going to be.”

[From JustJared]

I’m actually disgusted by this sh-t. THEY WERE LITERALLY FILMING THE FINAL MOVIE. And they still couldn’t make up their minds about how to connect Rey. I’m absolutely appalled that Kathleen Kennedy still has a job after this, after she showed how little concern she has to the story. She honestly believed that she was just selling sh-t to fans and they would buy whatever she gave them. Rey being a Kenobi would have made SO MUCH SENSE. Jesus Christ.

Photos courtesy of Backgrid, Star Wars.

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32 Responses to “Daisy Ridley: Rey could have been the daughter of Obi-Wan Kenobi”

  1. Case says:

    They ABSOLUTELY should’ve had a plan to begin with. To have such an expensive, highly-anticipated film series coming out of a major studio without a roadmap is mind boggling. But that said…the original trilogy didn’t have a roadmap either, even from the mind of George Lucas. The additions of Vader being Luke’s father and Luke and Leia being twins were ideas that came later, not from the beginning. I saw this because I feel like Star Wars fans often criticize the newer trilogies for the exact same issues the original trilogy had. Again though, different circumstances here, and they should’ve had an end goal in mind from the beginning.

    All of this said, I loved her as a Palpatine. It is by far my favorite option in terms of what it brings to the overall series. The symmetry it brought in the connection between the Skywalkers and the influence the Palpatines have had on them throughout generations was very, very powerful to me, and I liked that the person able to truly end the cycle, Rey, was because she had that true evil within her and chose to reject it. Her being a Kenobi would be…fine, I guess? But would have no thematic meaning to me.

    • Elizabeth Phillips says:

      She could have been Obi-Wan’s granddaughter, but she was MUCH too young to be his daughter.

      And I agree that it’s more powerful that she chose to be good when she had the potential to be bad.

    • Sigmund says:

      I mean, Rey being a Palpatine only has significance for the audience, not her. We literally have no reason to think she even knows who Palpatine is. We’ve never seen anyone speak of him to her, except Luke once in passing, who refers to him as Sidious.

      The frustrating part about making her a Palpatine is that, like the film as a whole, it only has meaning for the audience. Nothing has any weight to the characters and it’s all hollow.

    • Sigmund says:

      Honestly, this isn’t a big surprise. Whether or not you enjoyed the narrative decisions made in the last film, it definitely did not fit with the the rest of the trilogy. They clearly were winging it and it showed.

  2. JT says:

    Although the obi-wan storyline would’ve been better, they really need to stop clinging to the same five 5 characters all of the time. It is damaging the brand because they aren’t expanding the universe. Star Wars is supposed to include a whole damn galaxy. Why the hell is everyone only related to a handful of people? People knock the MCU because of their formula, but their world building is top notch and the plan out their stories. It took 10 years to make Endgame for goodness sakes.

  3. Becks1 says:

    I actually thought her as a Palpatine worked overall, it just needed to be better mapped out.

    I do think the whole final trilogy was pretty lazy in terms of being planned – and for the amount of money they spent on it, the fans deserved better.

  4. ce says:

    “at no point did Kathleen Kennedy sit down with JJ Abrams, Rian Johnson and George Lucas to map out the actual story they wanted to tell. No one, at any point, knew the end point for the story or how they were going to get there. It was always a half-assed money grab with no concern for the STORY.”

    THISSSSS! The obi wan thing would have been a great leap into the back story for the mini-series!! Come on!! It infuriates me that these people make billions of dollars, full well knowing that millions of people are invested in this enough to be pissed at these revelations, pissed at the final result of the films (it me). Not to metion, WASTING the usage of Harrison, Carrie, and Mark. I had hoped Disney made good use of their investment but I am really disappointed to know it was just another cash grab for them.

  5. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    Yeah, it’s a shame Star Wars wasn’t given the respect it deserves (even though I had a couple of issues with the first trilogy in the 90s). Franchise survivors have earned the right to focused and driven writing and wholly imagined then meticulously translated through PROPER CASTING, preparation, acting and editing. From start to finish, Disney is failing. Star Wars is not Transformers. Nor is it Marvel or DC, and the fact those entities are currently more entertaining should scare. Granted, Rogue One hit the proverbial nail, it’s been an exception and not a rule. Crying shame.

  6. Queen Meghan's Hand says:

    Real question: was she good in this role? I find her so unappealing in interviews that I have not watched this latest trilogy. But I’ll watch if she is good. And I do enjoy messy movies.

  7. lucy2 says:

    It’s a real shame they didn’t work harder to make a better story. Can you imagine have this franchise in your hands, and all the money in the world to do what you wanted with it, and kind of shrugging it off and saying they’d figure it out as they go?

    Honestly, I like the the Last Jedi idea that Rey wasn’t anyone’s descendant, but that she simply had it in her just on her own.

    • Alarmjaguar says:

      Same, the idea that she wasn’t part of any particular lineage was so much better. I was so angry about that last movie — AND that they made Rey and Kylo Ren kiss. Argh, he was a genocidal maniac! Even my kids were rolling their eyes about that one.

    • Hannah says:

      @lucy2 Hi, I think I like your version most of all. Why did Rey have to be anyone’s descendant? Why couldn’t we just have had a strong, independent woman. Periodt. Completely mind blowing that they were faffing around with this major storyline in production. Welp!

      • lucy2 says:

        That’s what The Last Jedi set up, and then JJ Abrams dismantled that because fan boys were whining. Plus I think JJ was too hung up on the original 3. I like him as a director usually, but I don’t think he handled this perfectly.

    • LeonsMomma says:

      Totally agree. I liked that initially it was hinted she had no link to a past Jedi or royal family. It was like the Force chose her, it wasn’t a birthright.

      I was introduced to the series as a child, and still think the first three are the best. And unpopular opinion, I actually like the prequels! (Good to watch when rainy and hungover.) The last three — oof, so bad. They really did marginalize John Boyega and Kelly Marie Tran, who brought a vitality that Oscar Isaac, god knows I love him in everything else, didn’t. And I hated what I called Zombie Leia (my apologies to Carrie Fisher). Leia always had an edge that only Carrie Fisher brought out and I think they really stamped down on it.
      On another note: I really liked Rogue One — Felicity Jones is a way better actress than Daisy Ridley.

  8. Dutch says:

    Thanks to his work on Clone Wars, Rebels and Mandolorian, Dave Filoni should be given the creative keys to the Star Wars kingdom. Kathleen Kennedy can still be in charge of Lucasfilm and make sure the bills get paid, but Filoni deserves to assume the kind of creative lead role similar to Kevin Feige has at Marvel.

  9. Mia4s says:

    This whole trilogy was a mistake and a waste. My Star Wars fan heart is so grateful for Rogue One and the Mandalorian to keep me going.

    And, well, not to go full nerd on you @Kaiser but that headline made me do a heck of a double take! Obi wan Kenobi died something like 15-20 years before Rey was born. She might have been related to him, but not a daughter! 😬

  10. STRIPE says:

    I wish Rey hadn’t been related to anyone in the original universe.

    They set up really beautifully at the end of “The Last Jedi” the idea that anyone can use the Force (remember the slave/servant kid at the very end who uses the force to grab his broom?)

    I thought they were going to expand on that more but no – they did the small thing and tied her back to an old character.

  11. Jay says:

    You make a really good point about the importance of sitting everyone down and getting on the same page – I really loved Rian Johnson’s take on the story, but it was clear there was no cohesion. I felt like each step in this newer trilogy spent an inordinate amount of time undoing and redoing the previous films, which takes a toll.

    I have heard excuses of tight timelines, used as a reason for why they couldn’t have a better story for Kelly Tran to continuity of directors, but that doesn’t cut it from my view. Are we really saying people would not have waited however long it took for a trilogy that was thoughtfully done? I didn’t think I could get so worked up about star wars lol.

  12. M.A.F. says:

    She would have been Obi Wan’s granddaughter, not daughter. If they made Rey his kid then she would have been older, like in her late 30s/early 40s.

    They should have stuck with what Johnson had done and just make her a nobody, it would have helped moved the series along. I dread what they come with the new series that’s still in the works.

  13. serena says:

    I wanted her SO MUCH to be a Kenobi, I actually believed she was right up to the end…. *sighs

  14. deader than new metal and disco says:

    lol no offense but it’s weird to see how many people in the US care about Star Wars- Everywhere else in the world nobody gives a f-ck about it, including my country.

    My nieces and nephews love the MCU, the DC superhero girls cartoon, and all other stuff, but you’ll have a hard time finding any kid or adult in my country who knows what star wars is.

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