The treatment of actors from the original Star Wars trilogy in the new set of movies has created a major rift within the fandom. Most recently, Admiral Ackbar actor Tim Rose detailed how he was humiliated on the set of The Last Jedi on the final day of shooting by director Rian Johnson.
Admiral Ackbar, the Mon Calamari, who made his first appearance in the Return of The Jedi has been a major piece of the Star Wars universe for years especially in the eyes of fans. His story was especially fleshed out in the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars as he served as a captain in the Mon Calamari royal guard. He would be instrumental in quelling a separatist takeover of Mon Cala.
Many were excited to see the character return for The Force Awakens and its sequel The Last Jedi. However, fans would be quickly let down by Admiral Ackbar’s death in The Last Jedi. He is killed when First Order forces led by Kylo Ren launch an attack on The Resistance’s flagship. Admiral Ackbar is killed when Kylo Ren attacks the bridge.
A number of fans including Admiral Ackbar puppeteer Timothy D. Rose were less than pleased with Disney and specifically Rian Johnson’s treatment of the character.
Rose spoke with YouTuber Jamie Stangroom about how he reacted to Ackbar role in the sequel trilogy.
“After waiting 30 years to reprise Ackbar I was a little disappointed with Ackbar’s role in that picture. So in The Last Jedi, I was quite looking forward to maybe them giving him something more juicy.”
He then reveals how he figured out Ackbar died:
“And I looked at my script and I went, ‘Oh, Ackbar’s going out of the window. Well, that’s that then!'”
Rose would then detail how he was brought to tears when Ackbar’s final moments were turned into a joke on set.
“We finished all of our bits and they asked me to come down to camera. And I thought, ‘Oh well, maybe they’re going to say thank you for being one of the heritage characters and giving 30 years and all that.’ But what they did was, they gave me a Millennium Falcon sign that had the day and the date on it, the scene number, and they said, ‘Can you look at camera and say ‘It’s a wrap?’ Because that would be really funny.”
“I was actually in tears in the suit because I thought – after everything, after hoping there’d be something, after knowing there wasn’t going to be anything else, Ackbar’s final moment before he went in to the box was just a big joke about ‘It’s a wrap.’ They just thought ‘Wouldn’t it be funny?’ And that was the sum total of my life as Ackbar.”
He then noted, “I disappeared down the back and couldn’t come out for a good 30 minutes out after that.” He adds, “They took over a little bit of your lives.” He concludes, “They become part of us and we are part of them.”
You can listen to the full interview below:
One Twitter user described how they viewed Rose’s reaction.
He thought he would be treated with dignity and respect but his expectations were subverted.
— nerfherder (@nerfherder117) June 3, 2019
Following Rose’s interview, he would be summarily mocked by a number of people who indicated that Ackbar’s character was just a “meme.”
Sequel Trilogy fans are now mocking Admiral Ackbar & Tim Rose saying he’s a cry baby & “Ackbar is just a meme”
Lucasfilm’s new fanbase does nothing but disrespect the original actors & characters now. pic.twitter.com/mZSqZRvoh1
— Dataracer (@Dataracer117) June 4, 2019
What do you think about how Timothy D. Rose was treated on set and then by individuals on Twitter? Was it just harmless fun on Johnson’s part that was taken further than he expected? Or is this just another example of the lack of respect for the franchise and one of its beloved characters?