Spoilers ahead! Proceed with caution if you have yet to see Star Wars: The Force Awakens—(Which would be ridiculous, by the way, and you should stop whatever you’re doing and RUN to the theater ASAP.)
In an interview with SlashFilm, J.J. Abrams very honestly explained his thoughts and intentions behind the hug that General Leia (Carrie Fisher) and Rey (Daisy Ridley) share at the end of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
As many of you know, the hug between General Leia and Rey was surprising and confusing to many fans, including myself. Perhaps it would have made more sense if some kind of introduction took place – But none did. So, in the scene, they sort of just give each other a knowing look and embrace—And it felt like an incredibly intimate moment for two strangers to share, confusing many of us.
Additionally, Chewbacca, is also in the scene where General Leia seemingly comforts Rey. Most of us would obviously argue that Chewy is grieving the loss of Han much more greatly than Rey and can relate much more closely with the loss Leia is feeling.
So it just didn’t make sense that Leia would share this intimate moment with Rey, instead of with her longtime friend, Chewbacca.
Hopefully this will help us better understand! Check out what Abrams said about having Leia hug Rey, and not Chewbacca:
“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,” Abrams told SlashFilm. “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.”
I think Abrams’ explanation makes a lot of sense and I really dig how candid and awesome he is.
Non-verbal moments of communication can be my absolute favorite– They can be incredibly emotional and effective. But, in my opinion, this specific moment just didn’t play out well on screen.
After we saw The Force Awakens for the first time, I discussed that scene with my husband—And we pretty much came to the conclusion that, just as Abrams said above, there was a Force connection and they must have known more about each other than just what was shown on screen.
However, the fact that we had to have an entire conversation about the moment because we were both confused, was a bummer –
So what do you all think about this?! Do you like what Abrams said? How did the scene make you feel when you saw it and do you feel differently after hearing this explanation? Leave comments and let us know!
Star Wars: The Force Awakens will be available on DVD and Blu-Ray on April 5, 2016!
Star Wars: Episode VIII hits theaters on December 15, 2017!