After Rian Johnson made Star Wars: The Last Jedi, he faced angry Star Wars fans on Twitter, including some who formed a petition to have Lucasfilm strike Johnson’s film from Star Wars canon. Johnson funneled that experience into his new film, Knives Out. The all-star murder mystery has a character, Jacob Thrombey (Jaeden Martell), who tweets alt-right hate speech online.
“Anyone who’s on Twitter these days, God bless you because it’s rough waters out there, but there’s also wonderful stuff about it,” Johnson said Saturday at Deadline’s The Contenders Los Angeles. “That’s why we’re all still on it I guess. That’s one of the things [Knives Out] engages with, the current state of online culture. Whether you made a Star Wars movie or you have a cooking show, whatever you’re doing on there, someone’s going to be screaming at you about it probably. Let’s put it on a screen in a way we can all maybe have a laugh about it.”
Johnson added he is still in talks with Lucasfilm to make more Star Wars films, though had no news about them. “We’re still engaged with Lucasfilm and we’ll wait and see,” Johnson said. “No updates on it at this moment, but yeah.”
Inspired by the all-star murder Agatha Christie adaptations, Johnson wanted to set one in modern day with all the technological accoutrements that entails. That meant Knives Out had to incorporate modern technology and the people who use it.
“What we try and do is place it in modern day,” Johnson said. “That for me meant not just skinning it with cell phones, modern cars and music. That meant actually plugging it into 2019. We do character types who are slight caricatures of the type Agatha Christie used to do but with people who for better or worse you could only meet in 2019.”
Knives Out is in theaters November 27.