J.J. Abrams Dispels Fan Theory About Rey and Leia
Fan theories, a perplexing recent trend in which devotees of a work of fiction claim to unearth hidden truths about it through elaborate and often nonsensical analyses of minor peripheral details, are bigger than all of us. They serve no real purpose other than giving denizens of the internet something to occupy our time while we wait for the sweet release of death, and in some instances can even detract from actual criticism, but for the most part they’re harmless fun. In recent weeks, however, they’ve caused J.J. Abrams a bit of frustration.
In December’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Rey and the rest of the Rebels return to their HQ after destroying the Starkiller Base. When Rey and her squad stumble off of their crafts, Leia first embraces Rey as the rebels are tended to by those who stayed behind. Sharp-eyed viewers interpreted this split-second shot as a clear indicator that Rey was Leia’s daughter, because why else would they hug when Leia’s old pal Chewie was right there? There must be something more between the two of them, and to play the odds, it must be familial.
J.J. Abrams dispelled this notion in a new interview with /Film, putting the kibosh on any fan theories once and for all:
That was probably one of the mistakes I made in that. My thinking at the time was that Chewbacca, despite the pain he was feeling, was focused on trying to save Finn and getting him taken care of. So I tried to have Chewbacca go off with him and focus on Rey, and then have Rey find Leia and Leia find Rey. The idea being that both of them being strong with the Force and never having met, would know about each other — that Leia would have been told about her beyond what we saw onscreen and Rey of course would have learned about Leia. And that reunion would be a meeting and a reunion all in one, and a sort of commiseration of their mutual loss.
Had Chewbacca not been where he was, you probably wouldn’t have thought of it. But because he was right there, passed by Leia, it felt almost like a slight, which was definitely not the intention.
So, there you have it. But what does Abrams have to say about the Sith Jar-Jar theory?