JJ Abrams Spills Beans on Kylo Ren and the First Order


JJ Abrams gets particular about the Force Awakens baddies, and how the dark side’s changed since Return of the Jedi.

Quick, what was the coolest part of the first Force Awakens teaser trailer? Wrong! The answer is the red cross guard lightsaber wielding sith. I’d also have accepted the huge number of stormtroopers post-rebellion. If you did say the sith or stormtroopers, you probably didn’t say it loud enough.

Everyone was all over that weird-looking saber, but we still didn’t have a name. Then we got a name: Kylo Ren, the helmeted bad ass. But with all the answers came more questions. Fortunately JJ Abrams has a few more bits and pieces for us on the bad guys currently roaming the galaxy.

Empire recently sat down with Abrams for its latest issue, during which the topic of the dark side adjacent enigma came up. And from out of nowhere, the nuggets of knowledge come thick and fast.

First off, the Empire leftovers, known as the First Order, have an intriguing back story. Here’s what Abrams had to say:

“That all came out of conversations about what would have happened if the Nazis all went to Argentina but then started working together again?’” Abrams reveals. “What could be born of that? Could The First Order exist as a group that actually admired The Empire? Could the work of The Empire be seen as unfulfilled? And could Vader be a martyr? Could there be a need to see through what didn’t get done?”

So the First Order looks to be more fan club than faction. Will we see “I Heart Vader” badges or Obi wan effigies flying around. We can only hope.

But that’s not all we learnt! Turns out the reason that Kylo Ren isn’t called Darth Ren as you’d expect is because that dude ain’t no sith! Here’s what Abrams had to say:

“Kylo Ren is not a Sith… He works under Supreme Leader Snoke, who is a powerful figure on the Dark Side of the Force.”

Snoke may sound like a Willy Wonka candy cigarette, but he’s even more horrifying. In case you don’t know, Snoke will be motion captured by Andy Serkis, who did a tone poem as the character for the teaser’s voice over.

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