Laura Dern’s banner 2017 has made her an Emmy-winning star (thank you, “Big Little Lies”) and an instant icon of the “Twin Peaks” franchise, but her most highly anticipated role is still to come in “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” Dern and the entire cast and crew behind “The Last Jedi” have been insanely secretive when it comes to giving out any information regarding Dern’s character. All we’ve known is she goes by the name Vice Admiral Amilyn Holdo and rocks a pretty memorable purple hairdo.
Fortunately, the latest addition of Entertainment Weekly (via Vanity Fair) is a deep dive into “The Last Jedi” and provides our first real details about Dern’s “Star Wars” debut. One of the covers features Dern’s Holdo opposite Oscar Isaac’s Resistance fighter Poe Dameron and a headline that reads: “Can Poe get along with his new boss?” Take a deep breath, because it looks like Dern and Isaac will be going head to head in “The Last Jedi.”
The headline makes it official that Holdo is a member of the Resistance and not the First Order, which was one of the early rumors Dern couldn’t weigh in on. EW explains that Holdo is brought in to bring a new vision to the Resistance but ends up clashing with some of its members, including Dameron, who feel the war against the First Order should be waged differently.
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Holdo’s very existence as a character means the Resistance is slightly fractured from within following the events of “The Force Awakens.” The Resistance may have prevailed in blowing up the Starkiller Base, but the First Order did manage to destroy the Galactic Senate. Holdo has been dispatched to manage the Resistance from the top, and it appears she won’t be everyone’s cup of tea. According to EW, Holdo “doesn’t quite have Leia’s everyman (or everywoman) touch with the troops,” which results in a clash between good guys.
If Holdo is now directing the Resistance, where does General Leia Organa fit in? The late Carrie Fisher is expected to have a major arc in the new film, and it would appear re-gaining control of the Resistance from Holdo or going rogue with Dameron will have something to do with it. But that doesn’t necessarily mean Organa and Holdo will be mortal enemies. The new official franchise novel “Leia, Princess of Alderaan” says Holdo learned everything she knows from General Leia Organa, and “The Last Jedi” trailer also teases scenes in which Dern appears cordial with Fisher.
According to the novel’s author Claudia Gray (via Vanity Fair): “[Holdo] is somebody who’s a bit off-kilter, who sees the world through a prism most others don’t understand. At first Leia thinks she’s pleasant but weird, but as time goes on, it becomes apparent that there’s much more to Holdo than you might guess when you first met her. We don’t really have a lot of true oddballs in ‘Star Wars,’ so it was fun to introduce one.”
The general lack of information about the character has many thinking Holdo has ties to the First Order; perhaps she’s an agent infiltrating the Resistance from within and reporting back to Kylo Ren and Supreme Leader Snoke. Dern recently spoke with TIME about her role and only had this to say: “The new people will either be leading or misleading the heroes.” We may know a little more about Holdo, but we’ll have to wait to see the movie in theaters to find out if she’s a true hero or villain.
“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” opens in theaters nationwide December 15.