There's no two ways about it, the treatment of John Boyega's Finn in 2017’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi was an issue for a lot of people.
Sidelined to what was, at best, a wild goose chase at a casino, before returning for the final battle sequence on the salt planet Crait, the whole thing could have been cut from the movie and it wouldn't have made any difference to the plot.
Fans were very much split on it, and coupled with the demise of Luke Skywalker, it added up to disappointment for many.
Read more: Finn’s origins explored in Rise of Skywalker
Now Boyega has admitted that he too was among the disappointed.
“The Force Awakens I think was the beginning of something quite solid, The Last Jedi if I'm being honest I'd say that was feeling a bit iffy for me,” the 27-year-old actor told Hypebeast
“I didn't necessarily agree with a lot of the choices in that and that's something that spoke to Mark [Hamill] a lot about and we had conversations about it. And it was hard for all of us, because we were separated.”
Read more: Rian Johnson wants in on The Mandalorian
He goes on: “I guess the original Star Wars films there was much more of a trio feel where it was essentially about Luke’s journey, but Han and Leia there was a strong dynamic, which I think, I don’t know how quickly we’re going to be able to establish that longterm dynamic with [The Rise of Skywalker]. But if it’s exploring that dynamic, then that would be cool.”
Hamill did indeed have reservations about director and writer Rian Johnson's decision to make Skywalker a grumpy, weird milk-drinking hermit.
“I said to Rian ‘you got it wrong, Jedis don’t give up’”, he told YouTube channel Jar Jar Abrams back in 2017, as the movie was being released. “Much less hide off on an island. So right at the beginning, we were completely at odds.
“I mean, even if he had a problem, he would maybe take a year to try and regroup. But if he made a mistake, he would try and right that wrong. So right there we had a fundamental difference, but it’s not my story anymore. It’s somebody else’s story – and Rian needed me to be a certain way to make the ending effective.
“That’s the crux of my problem. Luke would never say that. I’m sorry. Well in this version, see I’m talking about the George Lucas Star Wars. This is the next generation of Star Wars, so I almost had to think of Luke as another character. Maybe he’s Jake Skywalker. He’s not my Luke Skywalker, but I had to do what Rian wanted me to do because it serves the story well.”
Despite being killed off in The Last Jedi, Hamill is back for The Rise of Skywalker, doubtless as a 'force ghost', so hopefully he'll be a bit less grumpy and a bit more upbeat.
Starring Boyega and Hamill alongside Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, Oscar Isaac, Anthony Daniels, Naomi Ackie, Domhnall Gleeson, Lupita Nyong'o, Keri Russell, Joonas Suotamo, Kelly Marie Tran, Ian McDiarmid and Billy Dee Williams, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker lands in the UK on 19 December.