Although his breakthrough role for many cinephiles was as Moses in the sci-fi cult classic, Attack the Block, John Boyega became more recognizable worldwide to audiences as Finn in Lucasfilm‘s Star Wars Sequel Trilogy. When he was the first face introduced in the original teaser trailer for The Force Awakens, Boyega became subject to racist attacks from some people that couldn’t comprehend a black actor as one of the leads of the franchise.
It didn’t help that when it came to Lucasfilm‘s Star Wars Sequel Trilogy, John Boyega felt that he was underserved by them. Although Finn was a prominent co-protagonist in The Force Awakens, his role was downgraded in the following two films, leaving critics and fans disappointed in the character’s trajectory and significance in the story.
Whether it’s dealing with racism within the fandom or feeling underserved by the franchise itself, John Boyega is still vocal about his experiences in Star Wars, although he remains a fan of the property. In an interview with Men’s Health, Boyega was asked about Obi-Wan Kenobi actress Moses Ingram, who was treated with similar racist attacks from some people online. Lucasfilm publicly stood by her, to which Boyega acknowledged that while Ingram was warned about potential harassment early on, he wasn’t:
“I’m the one that brought this to the freaking forefront… At least the people going into it now, after my time, [they’re] cool… [Lucasfilm is] going to make sure you’re well supported and at least you [now] go through this franchise knowing that everybody is going to have [your] back. I’m glad I talked out everything at that time.”
John Boyega and Moses Ingram are two of the most prominent examples of actors and actresses in the Star Wars franchise being harassed by disgruntled fans. Jake Lloyd, Ahmed Best, Daisy Ridley and Kelly Marie Tran were all victims of abuse from fans as well. The fact that this continues to happen may be indicative of the fact that Lucasfilm’s franchise has existed for 45 years, which leads to some segments of the fandom feeling a sense of entitlement.
It’s worth noting that while it’s okay to not like a film, TV series, or even a performance featured in them, there’s a difference between constructive criticism and outright harassment. It’s great that John Boyega remains vocal about his experience with Lucasfilm, and it’s clear that this has led to the company standing by their Star Wars talents from harassment.
Directed by J. J. Abrams, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker stars Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Kelly Marie Tran, Joonas Suotamo, Billie Lourd, Naomi Ackie, Richard E. Grant, Keri Russell, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Ian McDiarmid, and Billy Dee Williams. The late Carrie Fisher appears as General Leia Organa through the use of previously unreleased footage shot for The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is now available on Digital HD, 4K Ultra HD, Blu-Ray, and DVD. Stay tuned for all the latest news on the future of the franchise and any projects from John Boyega, and be sure to subscribe to Heroic Hollywood’s YouTube channel for more original video content.
Source: Men’s Health
Originally published at heroichollywood.com