Back to IndieWire

Adam Driver Planned a Backstory for Kylo Ren That Never Made It Into His ‘Star Wars’ Films

The backstory may not be included, but you can see it running deep through Adam Driver's performance.

"Star Wars: The Last Jedi"

“Star Wars: The Last Jedi”


Kylo Ren turned to the dark side after waking up one night during his training to find mentor Luke Skywalker thinking of killing him. But what if his anger started developing long before that? “The Magicians” author Lev Grossman is finally sharing outtakes from his big 2019 Vanity Fair preview of “The Rise of Skywalker,” which was the first major feature written on the final entry of the Skywalker saga. Grossman spoke to the entire cast for the article and told Inverse this week that he left out something big: Adam Driver’s backstory for Kylo Ren.

“I think probably the thing that was missing for me, I wanted to see more about Kylo’s childhood,” Grossman said of the latest “Star Wars” trilogy. ”I thought they would go back to show us more about why he turned to the dark side. [Adam Driver] had a lot of interesting thoughts about Ben Solo’s childhood.”

“This is actually something Adam Driver said,” Grossman continued. “He said that both Han Solo and Leia were way too self-absorbed and into this idea of themselves as heroes to really be attentive parents in the way a young and tender Kylo Ren really needed. There wasn’t really that much of it in the movie so I just think we have to assume his childhood sucked.”

From the sound of it, Kylo Ren’s emotional trauma ran much deeper than Luke Skywalker’s betrayal. Turning Han Solo and Leia into self-absorbed parents would’ve better explained the volatile resentment Kylo had for his parents across the latest “Star Wars” trilogy, although Driver is such a precise actor that you can still see his created backstory for Kylo in his performance.

Since wrapping up his run as Kylo Ren with the December release of “The Rise of Skywalker,” Driver has gone on to earn his second Oscar nomination and first in the Best Actor category thanks to his performance in Noah Baumbach’s “Marriage Story.” Next up for the actor is a role in Ridley Scott’s “The Last Duel,” production on which is currently on hiatus. Driver also stars opposite Marion Cotillard in Leos Carax’s musical “Annette,” which was expected to debut at Cannes before the festival’s cancellation.

Sign Up: Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here.

This Article is related to: Film and tagged , ,

Get The Latest IndieWire Alerts And Newsletters Delivered Directly To Your Inbox