Adam Driver did a masterful job as Kylo Ren in the Star Wars sequel trilogy, a feat made all the more impressive by the fact he had to deal with the conflicting creative visions of filmmakers J.J. Abrams and Rian Johnson.
The son of Han Solo and Leia Organa appeared to fully embrace the Dark Side when he killed his father during The Force Awakens‘ final act. Johnson doubled down on that in The Last Jedi by making him the new Supreme Leader of the First Order following Snoke’s demise…however, the writer and director also introduced the idea of there being romantic feelings between Kylo and Rey.
By the time The Rise of Skywalker arrived, Lucasfilm was desperate to please fans and, for Abrams, that meant sending Ben Solo out as a hero. He died after sacrificing himself to save Rey, sharing a kiss with his former foe in what proved to be an odd send-off for this trilogy’s Darth Vader.
With Daisy Ridley set to make her return to this Galaxy Far, Far Away for a movie set 15 years after the Skywalker Saga’s conclusion, there’s been speculation that Driver’s villain-turned-hero could somehow factor into the story.
Asked by the hosts of the Smartless podcast (via SFFGazette.com) whether he’ll return as Kylo Ren, the actor responded, “They’re doing stuff, but not with me. I’m not doing any more.” When it was put to him this is because his character’s story is done, Driver confirmed that to be the case.
While Driver’s admittedly brief comments will disappoint some fans, it’s not exactly hard to understand why he’s looking to move on as a performer. It’s always possible he’s trying to throw fans off the scene, but like many of those sequel trilogy actors, it seems he’s more than happy to bid farewell to the franchise.
Recently, Driver opened up on what proved to be an inconsistent stint in Star Wars for Kylo Ren. “I had an overall arc in mind that he wanted to do, which then changed,” he revealed. “[Abrams’] idea was almost the opposite journey of Vader, where Vader starts the most confident, the most committed to the Dark Side.”
“By the last movie he’s the most vulnerable, and weak, and he wanted to start at the opposite, where this character was the most confused and vulnerable, and by the end of the three movies would be most committed to the Dark Side.”
We’ll see what the future holds in store for Driver and Star Wars, particularly as we never expected to see Ewan McGregor, Liam Neeson, and Hayden Christensen, for example, reprise their respective roles after the prequel trilogy. However, they’ve all done so over the past couple of years, so you never know…