“A family in balance. The light and the dark. Day with night. Destruction, replaced by creation… Too much light or dark would be the undoing of life as you understand it.” - The Father (Mortis)
Watch the trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KjWElAwnKpI
I am working on editing each movie in the Sequel Trilogy according to my understanding of what it would look like if it shared the themes from Star Wars Legends.
Worprint Released. Pm if interested.
I’d love to have your feedback and suggestions as I create this, so please be open and offer criticism where you feel it is useful.
Goal of my TLJ edit:
To more closely align to the themes of Star Wars Legends material. (https://boards.theforce.net/threads/the-crucible-canon-merging-eu-and-new-canon-as-smoothly-as-possible.50053287/)
To demonstrate the mistakes of a narrow minded view that Jedi/light side = good and Sith/dark side = bad.
To tell stories of Luke, Leia, and Han that are respectful to their OT character arcs and to better align their storylines to that of Legends.
To give the new characters more realistic character arcs that stay within the bounds and limitations of Star Wars Legends and paths that logically flow between the films.
To tell a good, cohesive, authentic Star Wars story that generally stays within the limits of Legends.
Inspiration behind ST edits: Like many of you, I am a huge Star Wars Legends fan. I grew up reading everything I could get my hands on, comics, novels, short stories, playing the games etc. For me, transitioning into the Disney Era was tough at times. Most notably in the ST handling of the characters I loved. My favorite theme in Star Wars has always been the balance of the force and the failures and evolution of the Jedi. Initially, I had high hopes that Luke would surpass the failures of the Jedi doctrine and lead a new generation of balanced force users as the original Je’daii did. But alas, that was not the case… However, I think there is opportunity to tell the ST trilogy in a way that aligns better with the themes that Legends created. From Dawn of the Jedi to Tales of the Jedi through the KOTOR era, the PT and OT, there was a very clear theme of balance and what happens when either the Dark or Light tries to bend the force to their own narrow interpretation. I found the ST lacking in a clear reason for why it even existed in the Star Wars saga. I want viewers to leave my edit trilogy feeling like they now know something new about Star Wars, the force, and the OT trio.
What I want to fix in TLJ: I was pretty shell-shocked after experiencing TLJ for the first time. As the credits rolled, I had no idea what I was feeling. As soon as the film ended I turned around, bought another ticket, and immediately watched it again. After this second viewing it hit me… For the first time in my life I had just seen a Star Wars movie that I disliked. After spending so many years in Star Wars Legends there was just no way for me to like the new versions of the characters I had always adored. After putting a great amount of thought into this edit, I have come to the conclusion that this film can be transformed into a Legends story that I can love.
Here are the main areas I will be changing in my edit.
- Luke Skywalker’s motivations. The depiction of Luke Skywalker in TLJ is an abomination of the Legends Luke. Whether you liked the depiction or not, there’s no arguing that he is unrecognizable compared to the Grand Master Luke. This edit is the Legends cut, so I have to find a way to completely change the motivations of Luke’s character. Let’s begin with the reason Luke went to Ach-To. In TFA, Han says that after Kylo turned, Luke felt responsible and went to Ach-To to look for the first Jedi temple. That’s all we get and it’s actually a really cool Legends storyline. It sets up a reason for Luke to evolve the Jedi doctrine. It is true that people keep falling under Jedi teachings and end up wreaking havoc on the galaxy (Dooku, Anakin, Ben Solo). Something is wrong and needs to change within the Jedi religion. However, in TLJ this whole plotline is tossed out as we see that there is absolutely no reason for Luke to be at the first Jedi temple. He goes to this temple and doesn’t accomplish a single thing with it. He literally says, “I came to this island to die.” He cut himself off from the force, became a coward, a hermit, betrayed the trust of his friends and family, and let billions of innocents be slaughtered by the First Order on his watch. How does he turn into that person after reading the original Jedi texts? We don’t know exactly what is in those books according to Disney, but holy crap it must’ve been a depressing read. In Legends, the original Je’daii texts were all about balance. Don’t focus too hard on the light or you will become so selfless and pious that you fail to apply action where needed (see KOTOR 2 Jedi Council in the Mandalorian Wars). Don’t focus too hard on the dark or you become so self absorbed that you fail to consider consequences for anyone other than yourself (see the entire doctrine of the Sith). The dark side is the natural, basic instincts of a person that need to be regulated, and the light side is work towards pushing those things away. You cannot live as a purely selfish, or a purely selfless person… Balance is necessary. This is the original Je’daii code.
There is no ignorance, there is knowledge.
There is no fear, there is power.
I am the heart of the Force.
I am the revealing fire of light.
I am the mystery of darkness.
In balance with chaos and harmony,
Immortal in the Force.
The Je’daii were supposed to meditate on the dark and the light to find balance. “Observing the world around them, they saw two moons in the one sky—light Ashla and dark Bogan—and they understood the dual aspects to the Force, light and dark.” ― Ketu, Dawn of the Jedi. I adore this understanding of the force. The entire conflict between Jedi and Sith began because the sides split as one says light is better and one says dark is. Suddenly each side has flippantly created their own religion based on “a certain point of view” and the galaxy is constantly thrown into chaos by the force powers that be. That is a beautiful storyline with countless applications to our own lives and this world. Let me bring this all back to Luke… These things are what the Grand Master should eventually learn. Anakin, the Chosen One, brought balance to the force by leveling the playing field as he destroyed both Jedi and Sith. Luke didn’t have any understanding of these deeper concepts of balance in RotJ, but by the time TLJ rolls around it is the perfect scenario for him to know these things. He saw the failures of the Jedi religion first hand in Ben Solo, and knew something was wrong. Then he goes to find the original Je’daii temple which should’ve included those teachings above. This new understanding would ascend Luke to a level of power that no one had ever reached, and in my edit… it will.
Luke Skywalker’s legacy. Now that you understand my reason for Luke going to Ach-To, let’s look at the implications of that in TLJ. There’s no doubt that he feels a weight and responsibility for his actions. That is classic Luke right there. He can be upset with himself for Kylo’s fall, but any mentions of his wanting to die and his cowardice must be removed. The reason for his staying on the island and leaving his family is not going to be him running away, but him doing what is necessary to save everyone. He is making the sacrifice to dedicate his life to study the balance of the force in order to save countless generations in the future. His decision will truly change the course of the galaxy and the force. However, he still dearly loves his friends and cares about what is happening now. Therefore with his newfound powers, Luke will be the one to save Leia after Kylo “kills” her (yes, Kylo takes the shot). Luke will be the one to heave the Mon Calamari cruiser at the Supremacy to save Leia. Luke will be the one who made the sacrifice to delay the First Order on Crait to save Leia. He loves his sister with all his heart, and is heartbroken that he can’t physically be there with her… because at the end of it all, we will see Luke, present and meditating in the World Between Worlds, a truly ascended Grand Master of the force, and we know that the ultimate hero has became one with the force to oversee peace in the galaxy. Like the Father on Mortis, Luke made the decision to maintain balance. Anakin refused this role in the Clone Wars because he couldn’t let go of Padme, which eventually led to his downfall… but Luke chose to sacrifice life as he knew it to save the people he loved. In Legends, we see Luke make a similar decision in Fate of the Jedi in regards to the Celestials and Abeloth, and I am now bringing that concept to life in TLJ.
Rey’s training. As my TFA did, this film will open with Rey. She finds Luke on Ach-To which is something he didn’t expect. In fact, Luke never expected to see anyone ever again. But the force works in mysterious ways and brought Rey to him for a reason (which won’t become apparent until my TRoS cut). However, her feeble understanding of the force is what upsets him, as the last thing that Luke wants is another generation of Jedi that could lead to another person falling and starting a new war. Yes, it really is time for the Jedi to end, and Luke says that he will teach Rey so she will know their failings. In fact, Yoda even says it is time for the Jedi to end, which at the end of the Clone Wars was something he was beginning to realize. Luke trains Rey in the doctrine of the Jedi, hoping she will stay and learn its flaws and study this new balanced understanding of the force to share with others. However, as Luke once did in ESB, Rey becomes impatient in her training and runs off, ignoring Luke’s warning that he once experienced himself, “This is not going to go the way you think.” We will have already seen a training montage of Rey to explain her increase in power. Given that she trains with Luke for a time, she is not actually unbelievably overpowered in the film. The most powerful thing she does is battle the Snoke guards, and she is even injured in the battle. She has apparent flaws and strengths, and at most she is no more powerful than an average Jedi in the Clone Wars. Yes, she should need more training (than even the montage will show) but she appears pretty unbalanced in this film so I’m okay with saying the few bursts of power we see are her tapping into the dark.
Kylo Ren remains menacing. In TFA, Kylo struggled with the light and the attachments to his family. At the end, when he kills his father, that is him closing himself off to the light. I mean, just read the quote from the TFA novel in my other thread. And the visualization of the red on his face on the walkway, followed by his wounded rage in battle, mercilessly cutting Finn down… Nothing about any of that hints at him going back to the light. Kylo has fully become a monster and this trilogy desperately needs a main villain. He does all these horrible things, we know how quickly committing fully to the dark side can corrupt you (see Anakin and the younglings) and we’re supposed to believe suddenly (the very next day!) that Kylo can’t destroy the entire Resistance because his mother is on the ship? I understand the dynamic they were trying to show with him, but from what we know about the Dark Side, there is no logic in Kylo not shooting Leia. Of course, in my cut, Luke will save Leia, again and again and again, and it will frustrate Kylo to no end. This is all for a reason that will be revealed in my TRoS cut. I need Kylo to be the main bad guy to serve the themes of this trilogy edit. So now when we look at the weaknesses of Kylo, it’s not his wavering between light and dark… It’s him being dark, but being extremely attached to Rey. He cares for her, he wants to rule with her, it may be a bit of an infatuation, and it will ultimately be the thing that changes his character forever. It’s all about Rey. Their relationship is vital to what I’m trying to tell. Kylo and Rey’s story is by far the most interesting part of TLJ, and putting all of Kylo’s motivations into this plot will do wonders for his menacing presence.
Finn, Poe, Rose, Holdo, Canto plotline. Alright, this isn’t as complicated as it seems. This sequence has been heavily criticized and I think most of it is justified. I’ll be trimming out the usual stuff from this sequence as I don’t feel it contributes anything to the themes of Legends, and in fact distracts from the main point of this movie. It’s a shame that they didn’t find a better way to utilize Finn in TLJ and there’s really no solution to this. I won’t cut the entire sequence because we still need to see what Finn is doing, and the plight of the fleet is useful to what I do with Luke, so I need to set the scene. Holdo will not be redeemed as a good character though, she will remain as the snobby Admiral to show that the lines between good and bad are more blurred than you’d think. She dies onboard one of the transports that is shot. The purpose of this whole side plot is so that we can see how often Luke has to save the day, which demonstrates why his presence in the force is necessary. No other messaging needs to come from the Canto Blight plot. Finn is not running away as a coward either, he is just trying to leave to check on Rey because he loves her, but Rose mistakes him for a traitor until they begin working together.
I will be inspired by and using content from FGR’s Last of the Jedi and Anjohan’s edit, along with my own personal contributions from editing theatrical release. I also firmly believe that a Star Wars film must be at least 2 hours and anything less harms the movie. There must be a way to pace out the story to that length, even with the edits, or I will have failed.
- Replaced title to “Fate of the Jedi” (Inspired by https://starwars.fandom.com/wiki/Star_Wars:_Fate_of_the_Jedi)
- New crawl:
FATE OF THE JEDI
The FIRST ORDER reigns.
Having decimated the peaceful
Republic, Supreme Leader Snoke
now deploys his merciless
legions to seize military
control of the galaxy.
Only General Leia Organa’s
band of RESISTANCE fighters
stand against the rising
tyranny. As the First
Order speeds towards the
rebel base, the brave heroes
mount a desperate escape.
Rey and Chewbacca race to find
Luke Skywalker, certain that
the Jedi Master will restore
a spark of hope to the fight…
- This film starts with Rey. As my TFA cut did, we will begin with a quiet, emotional, serene experience with Rey as the focus. I have re-cut the end of TFA into the beginning of this film, but with some major changes! As soon as the Falcon begins its descent into the atmosphere of Ach-To, we cut to Luke. He turns and looks to the sky. He senses someone arriving. Right off the bat we are going to know Luke is Luke, and Luke has the force. The shot cuts between him looking at the sky and Rey’s face, indicating that they already sense one another. Chewie gives Rey a puzzled look. This all works so well it really blew me away to be honest.
- With the changes to my TFA ending, I adjusted this version to be fully compatible. This means that upon finding Luke, Rey only briefly locks eyes and then immediately offers him the lightsaber (this also helps the pacing a few of you mentioned about how ridiculously long they used to stare at each other, now that already took place in a dream in my TFA edit where it is honestly much better suited). The pacing and musical swings work so much better here, and that lightsaber fully bears that heavy burden now.
- New soundtrack on the scene of Rey handing Luke his saber [Anjohan]. Luke does not throw his lightsaber away. He gives it back to Rey in what should now be an emotional scene. You can see the torment on his face during this scene, but it isn’t because he is afraid of the saber anymore. His struggle is with how badly he wants to take up the blade and fight next to his sister again. We hear a very familiar soundtrack, reminding him of his RotJ days… but he somberly hands it back, knowing that his role is here now, studying the force and keeping the balance. Of course Rey is confused as Luke heads back to his hut.
- The very next thing we see is Luke beginning to unfold his Jedi robes. He is preparing for the challenge that has just disturbed his meditations. Rey knocks on the door, and I have removed Luke’s, “Go away!” line as he has already decided what he must do. We briefly see him pondering his robes before Chewie tears the door down and the scene continues as usual.
- Cut Rey interpreting Chewie to Luke, “He says you need to come with us”. The lines are delivered sarcastically and it’s done in a way that makes Rey lack respect for Luke which is 100% opposite of how we saw her admiration for him in Episode 7.
- After, “Where’s Han?” we do not cut away from this scene like theatrical. My goodness, this is a powerful moment for Luke and we need to feel it. So after Luke’s line, it cuts to an island shot and we hear Rey, “There’s no light left in Kylo Ren,” and we continue that conversation with a devastated Luke.
- After Rey says, “We need Luke Skywalker,” I removed Luke’s response saying he isn’t needed. Um, yes, he is desperately needed, and Luke knows it, but it’s not in the way Rey expects. Instead of his grumpy line, he continues to simply glare at her, still reeling from the loss of Han. Removed the line from Rey “Did you hear anything I just said?” and Luke’s initial antagonism “You think what?!” She looks up to the legend of Luke and her berating him minutes after telling him that his best friend Han is dead is stone cold from her and not in character. Luke also now appears more mysterious/somber instead of frustrated. “You think I came to this island for no reason at all?” and then he walks back to his hut for the deleted Luke mourns Han scene. Luke is only snippy in this conversation because he lost Han. That’s it. He simply wants a moment of peace to weep for his friend. The whole point of this sequence is to feel Luke’s reactions, and hopefully in my edit we can all share the pain of our beloved Jedi Master a bit more clearly this time around.
- Big scene rearrangement here, so after Luke mourns Han, we switch to the opening space evacuation battle. So now tge first 7-8 minutes are on Luke and Rey which works much better for storytelling the overall picture. Afterwards we carry through the full space battle until Finn wakes up and asks, “Where’s Rey?” which then will cut back into her following Luke around the island learning his routine.
- Heavily trimmed the Hux/Poe prank call, now it’s just cut down to a minor distraction tactic by Poe with minimum humor involved. More along the lines of something Anakin would’ve done in the Clone Wars rather than the abominable “your mom” joke that somehow made it on screen. There are few times across the ST where dialogue seems akin to a Marvel movie, and that is not acceptable in Legends.
- A few minor edits throughout the space battle adjust for a more serious tone. Less BB-8 antics in the ship and such.
- Cut Finn falling and flailing as a gag. Now he simply wakes up and begins to get out. Ahhh, the beauty of normalcy.
- Rey continues to follow Luke as he goes about his daily routines (less the part of him actually drinking the milk, because his grotesque reaction doesn’t really fit the Legends depiction of his character that I’m going for). When Rey is once again at his door, I cut his line, “You’re wasting your time,” because in my cut Luke isn’t a grumpy failure. He just glares at her and continues working, teaching her patience until she senses and approaches the tree. At this point Luke realizes there’s something really special about Rey.
- I have re-organized many shots in the tree scene to completely change the meaning of it. Cut Luke’s line, “Okay, that is pretty much nowhere,” as Luke himself is from Tatooine which is arguably as nowhere as Jakku so I never understand his levity with that statement. The scene works much better with the serious tone throughout. This is the first time we see Luke in a Master role, and I don’t want that distracted by out of place humor.
- Cut Luke’s lines of misery and death in this conversation. In my film, there is no mention of Luke acting like a failure. His whole mystery is why won’t train anymore Jedi. It’s due to their flawed doctrine, but he is ultimately willing to train Rey in the force and why the Jedi need to end. Of course Rey doesn’t understand these nuances and has a deified view of the Jedi, hence her frustrations. Now when Luke says, “You need a teacher,” Rey immediately jumps in front of him and says that he isn’t busy, implying that she wants him to do it. It is time for the Jedi to end, and Luke is eventually planning on teaching Rey why. His sadness in this scene is still due to Han’s death, because Han himself died as a result of the Jedi failures, which explains Luke’s frustrations with another person showing up at his door wanting to learn to be a Jedi. With the first 12 minutes of the movie only on Luke and Rey, there are no distractions from Luke’s sadness over Han or his disappointment in the Jedi teachings. The tone of everything on Ach-To is completely different when we aren’t jumping around like theatrical. It’s all about Han’s death, Luke’s pain, and Rey’s questions.
- After the tree hut scene I now brought in the R2-D2 scene from Act 2 with Luke boarding the Falcon. (Thanks Atom-88 for the idea, this works REALLY well) This does a number of great things for the story. First, it helps set a better day/night cycle to represent the amount of time Rey is spending on the island and how the First Order is chasing the Resistance. Second, it gives Luke motivation to save Leia in a whole new way. This is such a beautiful place for this scene to occur and I am super excited someone thought to suggest it.
- Removed Luke’s line to R2 about “I’m NEVER coming back”, because with the new scene placement it’s all about him realizing he can’t stay away from the fight, as much as it pains him. I also removed his quip to R2 “That was a cheap move” because the tone of his voice and his facial expressions no longer fit the context of the scene. The Luke we have seen is greatly burdened by something, but he has not been presented as a failure or coward at all. Seeing the scars in his soul through his expressions in silence is more convincing.
- At the conclusion of the R2 + Luke scene we now instead cut to the Throne Room scene with Kylo. It works really well because R2 had just played the recording and you just know Luke is thinking of her, Han, and Kylo here. Now BOOM, Kylo is instantly on screen for the first time.
- Cut mentions of Kylo failing against Rey in the throne room scene since that doesn’t happen as clearly in my TFA edit. I edited this scene to make it seem like Snoke is only upset at Kylo’s lack of balance in killing Han. Even though he did the job, it wasn’t good enough for Snoke (and it never is). This garners motivation for Kylo to immediately head out and kill Leia to prove that he doesn’t hesitate, to both himself and to Snoke. After Kylo smashes his helmet we cut to a mourning Leia, who appears to sense his anger through the force.
- Overlaid Palpatine’s voiceline saying “Vader” underneath when Snoke says it. I will do this a few times throughout the film where you almost feel as though there are two voices speaking some of his lines, but it’s vague enough to not be a direct giveaway.
- The throne room scene plays out through the end of space battle Part 2, and now it works so much better to see Luke reach out to save Leia at night time because we just saw him with R2 at night. I also added another voiceline of Leia saying “Luke” during the tension with Kylo and you can really feel the connection the three of them share. Especially when Luke responds with “Leia” after the missiles are launched. It’s really poetic, and you almost feel like Kylo pulls the trigger knowing it’s not going to work anyways.
- The entire sequence of Kylo in his starship attacking Leia’s cruiser is restructured by combining [Anjohan] and [FGR] edits. Another sequence that is hard to explain, but essentially I have edited Kylo to be the one to shoot Leia and Luke is the reason for her survival. This is the best way for me to tolerate Leia’s spacewalk and it demonstrates, for the first time, the incredible, unmatched power that Luke wields. It also works well as a motivator for Luke to begin training Rey. This scene takes place at night for Luke which follows right into my next scene.
- Removed the brief scene of Kylo’s destroyed mask in the elevator after he departs for his ship. I do love the visual but it hinders the pacing and is an artifact that gets in the way of my new scene orders.
- With this new scene placement, it’s so sequential how now immediately after saving Leia, Luke walks straight to wake up Rey to tell her he will teach her the lessons. And this scene is still at night, so everything happens in a much more logical way. Moving that R2 scene up really changes the entire first Act.
- We immediately cut from Luke waking Rey to the next morning where she begins her training. These scenes work so much better when referring to Kylo because Luke just witnessed him attempt to murder Leia mere hours ago instead of in the future. It’s a great contrast for the viewer, as we see how Luke’s powers just saved the day, but he STILL wants the Jedi to end which would point to there being a much bigger meaning than he is just being a coward. He actually has some untold reason for this, and it’s not mere fear. I hope you love how this Act flows as much as I do now!
- Cut Rey’s line of “Master Skywalker, we need you to bring the Jedi back, Kylo Ren is strong in the dark side of the force” during her first lesson at the rock because it is delivered in a way that makes her treat Luke like a doofus. Again, it is tone that does not at all match the respect that Rey has for Luke in other scenes. Luke knows already knows that Kylo is strong with the dark side and she knows he knows that. They kept making Rey take a condescending tone to Luke in theatrical and explain basic concepts to him like he is a total moron and it is so polar opposite of how she thought of Luke the very day before this film in Episode 7. Clearly the difference in directors did not translate ideas consistently.
- Removed the grass smacking hand gag. Luke is serious here, and he is presented as a caring mentor with no antagonism. The tone of this scene is so different without it!
- Using some of [Anjohan] edit training montage, I have painstakingly re-organized an entire training sequence for Rey’s first lesson. Rey trains on the island during the events of the film. There are multiple sessions. The audience can expect her to have been there learning for a decent amount of time. It’s hard to explain everything about this first lesson, but it’s epic.
- Another new scene order, we now jump straight from Luke talking about Rey going to the dark, only “seen this power… in Ben Solo”, and then straight cut into the scene of Kylo getting his stitches removed where Rey has her first connection with him. It makes so much sense that right after Rey touched the dark that their connection would bridge (especially what we know from Episode 9 that Palpatine is actually the one bringing them together). You should now notice throughout the film that everytime Rey struggles with her darkness is when she connects to Kylo, it’s no longer random.
- Inserted the caretaker explanation deleted scene after Rey shoots the building. The caretakers will be shown again in the third lesson for Rey so it’s important to have context on who they are.
- After the Poe and Holdo introduction, I have added the deleted scene where Finn decides to go after Rey. In theatrical he keeps wanting to run away and desert the Resistance. Not in my cuts. As I said in TFA, his character is loyal to a fault, and this deleted scene shows that he actually has a reason to head to the escape pods to help Rey.
- Cut BB-8’s dance in the deleted scene when he tries to cheer up Finn. I didn’t even notice it before, but it drags the scene on so long and it’s just weird… Imagine R2 dancing for Han.
- Heavily trimmed the Finn desertion scene because in my cut… he’s not actually deserting. He just wants to make sure Rey doesn’t come back to trouble. Removed some of the writing around Rose to make her character a little more normal, and removed all of Finn’s hammy reactions about desertion. Now the scene plays like a legitimate misunderstanding.
- Again with the stomach churning sexual references about Maz… REMOVED.
- After Finn and Rose sneak off the cruiser, we go back to Rey trying to contact the Resistance and her second connection with Kylo.
- Trimmed down the Canto Bight antics. The pure goofiness is removed, as well as the whole fathier scene. These segments have been heavily criticized elsewhere and I also feel they don’t work well within the bounds of Legends or this film as a whole. They’re looking for the codebreaker and we get to see most of the weirdness of Canto Bight without going too far.
- After Finn and Rose are arrested, Rey continues her training with the second lesson. This is the scene in the evening within the meditation chamber. Luke teaches Rey about the hypocrisy and hubris of the former Jedi Order. I had to change a lot… Where to start… Well, first off there are no more parts where Rey lectures Luke. He teaches her about the Jedi failings, but she still holds them in a deified view. He then tells her the story of Ben, but doesn’t lament on his personal failures and despise his own name. He tells the story in a mournful way, but doesn’t bend it over to trash himself afterwards. When Luke tells Rey about Kylo’s betrayal, I cut “that MiGhTy Skywalker blood” because his tone is mocking and cut “In my hubris”. Now Luke appears to have genuinely tried to train Kylo without fear, and the blame lies more squarely on Kylo. It’s the same dynamic of Obi-wan and Anakin where sometimes the training is good, but the apprentice still falls. The surviving master always bears the weight that they could have done something more. As the story ends, Rey says, “I need someone to show me my place in all this.” Instead of a defeated Luke, we now see a humbled Luke. He sees the innocence inside Rey and empathizes with her, as he once viewed the galaxy, the force, and the Jedi just as she does right now. Removed a few more sentences of Rey condescending Luke so now she just appears determined, but naive.
- Inserted the Rey’s third lesson scene. Really does wonders in explaining the flaws of the Jedi doctrine. However, at the end of it Rey lashes out at Luke, frustrated at the lack of practical results from her training. I cut out more references of Luke’s failures, leaving this scene as Rey throws blame at Luke for Han’s death as she storms off. We see Luke hurt by this, and perhaps he wonders if he has made the right choice in remaining on this island to keep the balance or if he should’ve been beside Leia and Han all along.
- Cut a few lines of DJ’s awkwardness. I don’t really understand the direction for his character and it becomes distracting at times.
- I looked through the entire Fathier chase sequence for anything that could be salvaged, but it’s just not worth it. I do like the scene of Rose showing the kids her Resistance ring, but there’s no way to toss that in without the drag around it. Finn and Rose escape through the sewers and that’s enough.
- Since the Luke + R2 scene is moved out of Act 2, we now go right from Finn + Rose escaping the Canto Bight cell straight into another force connection with Rey and Kylo. Again, this works so well because the last we saw of Luke and Rey was them arguing in the deleted scene of the caretaker village. Now each time Rey has lashed out she is making some connection with Kylo instead of it being totally random like theatrical. The next we will see of Luke is him busting down the hut after sensing Kylo’s presence. The Rey/Luke relationship now has the tension it deserves to reach the breaking point.
- After Luke discovers them, Rey hits him with the staff and then immediately goes for the lightsaber without the battle. Removed the other Luke failure flashback and Rey offering Luke a chance to fight. There is nothing about Luke’s cowardice or failures, it’s all about Rey being brash and not completing her training. This is a mirror to Luke’s training in ESB when he ran away. He doesn’t stop her as he sees so much of himself in her, but he knows the trials that will follow her decision.
- Inserted the deleted scene of the extended Finn, Rose, and DJ Supremacy infiltration. This is one scene where I felt some humor actually connected, and it’s because it wasn’t a forced gab, it was a natural, tense scenario with a nice release. I like seeing more of the First Order stormtroopers up close and this whole situation feels straight out of a Tarantino movie. I love it, and with how much was removed from Canto Bight earlier I think some more time with this trio is deserved.
- Placed the scene of Luke burning the Jedi tree after Rey enters Snoke’s throne room. At this point, Luke is fully convinced that the Jedi doctrine leads to nothing but trouble and heads to destroy it. In my edit, Luke does not hesitate, he marches right up with the torch and is only cut off by Yoda who destroys it for him, showing his support of Luke’s decision. Removed a few of Yoda’s lines and Luke’s lines where they talk about Luke’s cowardice and such. Now both old Masters are in unison about what must be done, and Yoda encourages and teaches Luke as an equal. This moment of clarity from Luke prefaces the power we will soon see him wield.
- Removed Holdo’s “redemption” arc. I never understood the point of her withholding information from Poe, only to have her end up being a good person… And since she is not the one piloting the cruiser later in the film there is no reason for her not to remain as an antagonist. Now Leia simply tells her to board a transport and she obeys. This is the last we will see of Holdo as it is assumed that she dies aboard a transport that is destroyed by the First Order fleet.
- In the throne room before Snoke tortures Rey, I removed his line about wrongly assuming Luke would be the one to rise. Now the conversation plays as though Snoke wants Rey mainly for her knowledge on Luke since Luke has risen.
- Continued to remove scenes of Holdo onboard the cruiser or mentions about how she was actually a hero. I never felt that way, even in theatrical. At the end of it all she is still a horrendous leader that got dozens of her people killed for absolutely no reason, so a failure is how she will remain.
- Overlaid a line from Palpatine underneath Snoke’s command to kill Rey in the Throne Room battle. “Fulfill your destiny”. It actually sounds really cool and the very subtle hints throughout my edits point to his spirit still being present.
- Trimmed out the Snoke dialogue, “He ignites the blade… strikes his TRUE enemy!” The whole thing so clearly telegraphs Kylo’s decision that it takes away any shred of surprise. Now it is cut to actually be somewhat shocking. And with the way I have built Kylo thus far, it makes more sense for him not to join Rey after this action. This is classic sith behavior of the apprentice killing the unsuspecting master. It is more than that in that he didn’t have the strength to kill Rey, who he cares about, but he cares for different reasons than she thought.
- Cut the initial overly shocked face that Snoke makes when Kylo kills him. Now we only hear a lightsaber ignite, see Rey fall down, for her to then look back at Snoke to see what just happened. It preserves the surprise for another few seconds and cuts that weird facial expression.
- Re-edited the ENTIRE “Holdo maneuver” so that Luke is the one who throws an empty cruiser into the Supremacy through the force. I removed all lines or scenes that interfered with continuity and used Luke’s illusion meditation scenes as his focusing shots (I am doing something else with the Kylo v Luke fight that won’t use these shots again). After throwing the cruiser into the Supremacy, Luke collapses and crawls back up to look at the horizon as Leia looks back, knowing her brother saved her again… as she misses him dearly.
- Greatly reduced the nonsense around Finn and Rose’s escape from the destroyed Supremacy. Cut it down to the bare minimum of the Finn v Phasma confrontation and reduced some of the lighthearted quotes from Finn as well. There’s really no way to redeem what they did with Phasma’s character, but it’s at least good to show Finn breaking away from his chains once and for all.
- Inserted a small portion of the deleted scene with Finn and Rose in the shuttle. With everything cut from their time together so far, it’s good to show their friendship grow with as much decent content as we have.
- Cut Poe’s line “… all of ‘em!” during the Battle of Crait. It’s good enough when he just says “She drew them off!” His delivery is goofy after that and it doesn’t make sense that every single TIE fighter would go after the Falcon.
- Used some of the [Anjohan] Battle of Crait visual edits to tone down some strangeness in this battle and to alter Finn’s sacrifice. Now he and Rose are both shot down by the AT-AT’s before reaching the laser. Like Canto Bight, I don’t feel there is a need to get into the reasons behind these decisions. There are plenty of discussions elsewhere explaining why some people felt aspects of TLJ didn’t sit well with what they expect from a Star Wars movie.
- When Luke meets Leia in person, I cut part of her phrase “at the end” because with how much Luke has been involved in saving her in this edit and them sensing one another, it makes it more touching for her to simply say “I’m just glad you’re here”. The “at the end” implies that Luke has been more absent than I portrayed him so it’s gone now.
- I also cut the icebreaker about Leia’s hairstyle. It doesn’t really work in my version of Luke because there is no awkward tension to break. They are endeared to one another, truly loving siblings as we have always known them to be. This scene is now purely somber, as they both know what must be done. Removed all of Luke apologizing for his failures to Leia. Of course he has regrets for how things turned out with Ben, but there really isn’t anything to genuinely apologize for in my cut. He did what was necessary to protect the galaxy, so now they share a more touching moment together, not bogged down by Luke’s cowardice.
- Did you happen to tear up at the end of the Mandalorian Season 2…? Well boy do I have a surprise for you in the soundtrack department. The Luke + Leia scene will tug your heartstrings like never before 😉
- Continued the above soundtrack as Kylo lands to meet Luke.
- Completely transformed the Kylo v Luke post-duel confrontation with new visuals and audio. With audio work from the brilliant [Karl Veiga], the end of their fight is completely rescored. Alongside the new soundtrack, I have woven in new visuals to completely remake the meaning of their interactions. Visions of the Resistance, Han, and Leia haunt Kylo. Instead of this scene merely being a badass Luke moment, it is now a heavy, emotional, breakdown of Kylo’s soul. His pain seeps through the screen and sounds, and I promise you will feel it. This is the best part of the film.
- As Kylo stabs the illusion of Luke, I inserted Luke becoming a force ghost as his body fades away from Ach-To. Force Projection is a cool ability and his voluntary death here also pays homage to Ben Kenobi’s. We immediately see Luke take the form of a force ghost, indicating his Grand Master status.
- Rey and Leia sense Luke in the World Between Worlds instead of him dying on Ach-To.
- Added lines of Palpatine talking in Kylo’s head as Rey escapes in their final force connection. We see Palpatine speak in Kylo’s head much more drastically in my Episode 9 edit so I want to foreshadow that even more here.
- I didn’t like how uplifting things end when it’s just the Falcon jumping off into hyperspace again exactly like my TFA ending. It doesn’t have any weight, and this film should have weight like ESB. The broom boy scene also does not give the vibe I am looking for, so I have added a scene of Palpatine’s “The Dead Speak” speech as more of a cliffhanger ending with alternate credit music [lantern51]. This is atypical of a Star Wars film, but I think it’s worth trying out in this workprint. I gave the opening crawl an atypical intro (fading the stars into a hyperspace jump) so I feel like this alt-ending could also work. TLJ is supposed to be the odd egg of the bunch in the saga anyways with the red lettering and such so maybe this works. Let me know what ending you think.
If you have any ideas on how to make TLJ feel more like Star Wars Legends please post your suggestions below. I hope to make a beloved trilogy for those who didn’t enjoy parts of the ST, or even those who adored it, but want a new take on it.
May the force be with you all.
(The Force Awakens) Heirs of the Force | A Star Wars Legends Re-edit
(The Last Jedi) Fate of the Jedi | A Star Wars Legends Re-edit
(The Rise of Skywalker) Legacy of the Force | A Star Wars Legends Re-edit
(The Bad Batch) Cinematic Version | A More Mature Edit
(The Avengers) Dawn of Thanos Re-edit | MCU Refocused