What Dark Scene Was Cut From Episode IX?
One Episode IX confrontation was cut….
No doubt, even casual fans heard and saw the heartbreak in Chewbacca when Ben Solo killed his father in The Force Awakens. Some probably shed a tear.
And, as a result, Solo’s forever co-pilot shot, and severely wounded, his best friends’ son and nephew; pretty dark.
However, is it really shocking that as a heightening of the stakes (particularly if the movie had run longer) that a darker scene between Ren and Chewie would have been penned (or even shot) for Episode IX?
Kylo Ren Tortured Uncle Chewie?
Over the course of development, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker underwent a major evolution before the film eventually landed in theaters, with Chewbacca actor Joonas Suotamo‘s book “Roar!” – My Life as a Wookiee detailing that he and co-star Adam Driver filmed a scene in which Kylo Ren tortured Chewbacca for information about the Resistance. While Suotamo might not have all the answers about why the scene didn’t make it into the theatrical cut, he thought that the intensity of Kylo Ren might have been even too dark for the character, potentially making his salvation as Ben Solo hard to believe.
ComicBook.com also pointed to a tweet from “The Adam Driver Files,” which broke down a translated passage in Suotamo’s book:
Adam didn't talk at all during breaks, even though at this point the actors were otherwise friends. Joonas says Adam was so convincing in the deleted torture scene that he was at times actually scared & he believes the scene might have turned out too dark for the film. pic.twitter.com/Tw9hnJpYGh
— The Adam Driver Files (@AdamDriverFiles) March 4, 2021
Meanwhile, clarifying the scene’s parallel in the official novel (which is excellent, btw), Yahoo’s Joe Anderton explained:
Interestingly, the scene does appear in the official novelization, with Kylo reading Chewie’s mind and, instead of finding hatred, he sees only images of love that Chewie has for the young Ben Solo.
The novelization’s author Rae Carson was asked about the scene and confirmed that the mind-reading bit was something she added with studio approval, meaning that bit was not shot for the film.
Thanks to @raecarson, we do see another side to this torture scene that might make things a bit better for some. Although Kylo played it dark, the encounter did leave him shaken.
— Girls With Sabers 🦋 (@GirlswSabers) March 4, 2021
I added it. Everything I added got approval and support from the team.
— Rae Carson (@raecarson) March 4, 2021
Again, I really, really enjoyed Carson’s volume. I listened to it on Audible.
Currently listening to the end of @raecarson's #RiseOfSkywalker #audiobook read by @CaptainEhud. Tears & goosebumps. A real case of the book enhancing my enjoyment of the film. Hope #TheBaverBunch™ reads it soon on the #StarWars book club! @KristinBaver https://t.co/LoCmrqf5o5
— John Bishop (@jmbishopjr) May 20, 2020
Meanwhile, one wonders if we’ll ever see a rough cut of the confrontation.
IF there were a list of films that could use longer director’s cuts (or more deleted scenes), I think Star Wars Sequel Trilogy fits the bill.