After Chuck Wendig called Star Wars fans white supremacists, Star Wars director Rian Johnson and actor John Boyega have begun insulting and attacking their rabid fanbase following Kelly Marie Tran’s deletion of all her Instagram posts. Tran played Rose Tico in the Rian Johnson directed The Last Jedi.

Johnson has led the charge by calling fans and consumers, who are critical of The Last Jedi, “manbabies.”

Johnson would go on to explain that his use of the term “manbabies” was in reference to “a few unhealthy people.”

He would further clarify that there’s a “difference between not liking a movie and hatefully harassing a woman so bad she has to get off social media.”

He would go on to further explain his position that he’s condemning “being an abusive asshole to people online.”

However when a person using an anonymous account Tweeted to Johnson, “You ruined Star Wars.” Johnson decided to berate him.

This is just two days after Johnson had said he was condemning “being an abusive asshole to people online.”

Ironically, Johnson would say he’s never lashed out at anyone “for being disappointed in [The Last Jedi].

In an attempt to further explain himself Johnson said “if someone’s an asshole to me or my friends, I reserve the right to call them an asshole.”

But Johnson wouldn’t be the only member of Lucasfilm to decide to attack fans. John Boyega, who plays Finn, in The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, decided to have a row with fans.

After one fan believed that Lucasfilm had put up a social media silence policy after Tran deleted her Instagram, Boyega decided to mock him.

The fan even apologized, although he still made his opinion about the Star Wars clear. But Boyega wasn’t having any of it.

To make matters worse he decided to block this individual.

Boyega isn’t the only one blocking Star Wars fans. Rian Johnson is doing the same thing.

We’ve seen clearly what this type of behavior has done to the comic book industry. It’s resulted in a decline in revenue and sales. In fact, in 2017 “retailer orders for comics, graphic novels, and magazines fell 10% to $522.25 million, the largest percentage drop seen since 1998.”

And while this type of behavior can’t possibly be reflected in current Star Wars box office sales, the validity of the criticism that fans and consumers are leveraging towards the franchise definitely can. Fans and consumers were not happy about Star Wars: The Last Jedi. It received a 46% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. Many even claimed the brand was dead following the film.

Based on the box office totals from Solo: A Star Wars Story, fans are dropping the franchise. While the film has currently grossed over $315 million worldwide, it’s well short of the $500 million it needs to break even which doesn’t even include marketing costs. It’s also drastically behind The Last Jedi which grossed over $1.3 billion worldwide. And if you even look at Rogue One, it made over $1 billion in worldwide gross revenue.

Nevertheless some believe this is a positive development. Ben Kuchera at Polygon believes this is a good idea when he writes, “People threatening to walk away from these fandoms while they’re being horrible, only to be told that it might be better off if they actually do walk away, is a positive development.”

With fans apparently already abandoning your franchise, it’s not a good idea to attack those who rabidly love it. These are the people who allow you to direct Star Wars. These are the people who allow you the opportunity to act in Star Wars. Without them putting their wallets behind this franchise, it doesn’t exist. If fans aren’t buying tickets, buying games, and buying toys, and everything else that goes with Star Wars, it won’t be around for much longer.

And Star Wars isn’t the only mega franchise who has faced intense criticism from a rabid fanbase. Warner Bros., DC Entertainment, and the directors and actors involved in their films have received plenty of criticism. But the difference is these actors and directors aren’t going out of their way to attack fans of the franchise.

Is Lucasfilm and Disney endangering their marquee franchise by allowing their directors and actors to attack fans and consumers? Will this strategy pay off

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About The Author

John F. Trent

John is the Editor here at Bounding Into Comics. He is a massive Washington Capitals fan, lover of history, and likes to dabble in economics and philosophy.

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