Ever since The Last Jedi, the best Star Wars movie, hit theaters in 2017, director Rian Johnson has suffered a lot of harassment on social media. You’d think all the negative comments and constant targeted abuse would wear him down, but instead, the sci-fi filmmaker wasn’t exactly fazed.
In an interview with Cinema Blend, Johnson said the whole process of being a constant trolling target cured his tendency to seek approval from others. “Before I did The Last Jedi, nobody hated me on the internet,” he said. “If in a year I got a negative tweet, I’d freak out. I’d be like, ‘Oh my god, someone out there doesn’t like me. Gotta fix that!'”
According to Johnson, the toxicity around The Last Jedi made him reflect on his self-worth related to online spaces and sever that connection a bit so it wouldn’t bother him so much. In his own words, once he did that, everything became predictable and rather boring.
“It gave me a more realistic view of the system that is social media. There’s a lot of great, authentic interaction,” he says. “The bad stuff, the systematic trolling, the almost gamified abuse that some people devote their entire online presence to; Honestly, once you’ve seen enough, you see the pattern. It gets kind of boring after a while.
Every time more tweets come in now – and they’re still regular – it’s water off a duck’s back. “It doesn’t even give me that little negative ping anymore. And I don’t think it’s even my skin that’s getting hard, it’s just that I put it into perspective,” Johnson added. “I realize it’s a by-product of this Twitter social system. There’s going to be a degree of people that it’s their hobby, basically.
Given how some Star Wars fans have taken their dislike of The Last Jedi as an excuse to pile on Johnson and other production members, it’s nice to hear some positivity flowing from it. To this day, it’s still something some wings of the action movie fandom base their online personas on, and sadly, there’s really not much that Johnson or anyone else can. really say to change your mind.
At the minute, Johnson is set to premiere his new thriller, Knives Out 2. The film will open at the Toronto International Film Festival before hitting Netflix on December 23, 2022.