Iron Man director and the creator of Star Wars and Disney’s upcoming Disney Plus show The Mandalorian Jon Favreau recently discussed the responsibility Star Wars has.
While speaking at Vanity Fair’s New Establishment Summit, Favreau talked about his conversations with George Lucas alongside Disney CEO Bob Iger.
He was asked by Vanity Fair’s editor Radhika Jones about the pressure of stepping into the world of Star Wars.
“I don’t feel the pressure except to the audience that’s seeing what I’m making and I feel that pressure every time. And I think — much like the chefs I learned from when I was training to play that role — there’s a certain stripe of personality that are attracted to telling stories, which is you want to do something, but the experience isn’t complete until the people that eat the meal/watch the show/watch the movie, reacts to it.”
“And there’s something that happens that I really get excited by which is people coming together to enjoy something together, especially if it’s a collective experience of enjoying a story, a myth, a lesson, or sharing a common experience that everybody enjoys, in the case of Star Wars, I grew up with that. I don’t think I would’ve been a filmmaker had it not been for that film. I definitely wouldn’t be a Kurosawa fan or a western fan if George Lucas hadn’t opened the door. I wouldn’t understand Joseph Campbell if it wasn’t for the power of myth at the Skywalker Ranch.”
He then added, “So understanding that stories for the generation that’s coming of age can open doors to people and help guide the values of our culture if stories are told well. So to me that’s the part that I feel.”
Favreau would then reveal his conversations with George Lucas. He detailed that Lucas believed films could teach generations of people and specifically noted that Hollywood westerns did so.
“That there are life lessons that are in these stories, that carry on the tradition and speaking to [George Lucas] he felt that the western was the genre that helped teach a generation of people coming of age about the value systems that are espoused by that genre, and that Star Wars part of that responsibility is remembering that part of your audience is a whole generation that’s coming of age and through stories we express our values to the next generation. And so one of the things he said was not to lose sight that this is the main audience for stories.”
The Lion King director continued, “It’s great for us who grew up with it and feel nostalgic, but really you’re trying to teach life lessons through the themes and the conflicts that arise among these characters.”
To say this is a shocking revelation would be a lie. The idea that Hollywood elites and executives want to try and dictate the values they believe people watching their movies should embrace has become abundantly clear in recent years. It’s not about the story any more, it’s about preaching to their audience.
You can just look at the most recent Star Wars film to see that this is more than likely part of Disney’s culture. Solo: A Star Wars Story writer Jon Kasdan retconned Lando Calrissian and made him pansexual and highly insinuated in the film that he was engaged in a relationship with the droid L3-37.
“There’s a fluidity to Donald and Billy Dee’s [portrayal of Lando’s] sexuality. mean, I would have loved to have gotten a more explicitly LGBT character into this movie. I think it’s time, certainly, for that, and I love the fluidity ― sort of the spectrum of sexuality that Donald appeals to and that droids are a part of. He doesn’t make any hard and fast rules. I think it’s fun. I don’t know where it will go.”
He would then double down on Twitter and fully admit he was injecting identity politics into Star Wars.
Sorry to have brought identity/gender politics into… NOPE. Not sorry AT ALL ’cause I think the GALAXY George gave birth to in ’77 is big enough for EVERYONE: straight, gay, black, white, brown, Twi’lek, Sullustan, Wookiee, DROID & anything inbetween. #droidrights #weAREsentient
— Jon Kasdan (@JonKasdan) May 19, 2018
There is also an agenda in Hollywood that wants to replace traditional male characters on screen and replace them with women. Rumors indicate they are doing that with the upcoming James Bond film. The film is rumored to have a new female agent take on the 007 call sign.
Other films like the Ghostbusters 2016, Ocean’s 8, and even the most recent Men in Black: International have replaced male roles with those of women.
Actors and directors are also actively promoting their films using political terms. Suicide Squad director David Ayer promoted his Netflix film Bright saying, “It’s woke AF.”
Actress Kristen Stewart even described her upcoming Charlie’s Angels film as “woke.” She told Variety:
“God, it’s so funny. I know if I say this a certain way, I know that this will be written down. But it’s not such a bad thing. It’s kind of like a ‘woke’ version.”
And actors and directors aren’t just using it to market their films. They are also using films to push values on people. One just has to look at all the marketing surrounding Captain Marvel to see that the MCU was pushing specific values with that film. Brie Larson made it abundantly clear that she used the film as her “form of activism.”
Favreau’s discussion about Star Wars and The Mandalorian does not bode well given the recent track record with Hollywood trying to shove agenda down their audiences throats.
And I would argue that it is not Star Wars’ responsibility to pass values down to the next generation and it certainly should not be Hollywood’s either. Star Wars’ goal should be to provide entertainment first and foremost.
What do you make of Favreau’s comments? Does this make you nervous about The Mandalorian?