Not only is the galaxy far, far away, so is the last time anyone brought out a new Star Wars movie. That was Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith in 2005 — a decade ago, for those keeping track. It’s been a busy decade. Back then there was no Twitter, hardly anyone had heard of Barack Obama, and Adele was a 17-year-old singing in the shower. Oh and Daisy Ridley, star of the new film Star Wars: The Force Awakens, was 13 years old.
The Star Wars franchise is the most beloved of all movie properties. Star Wars is so huge it proved even the Beatles wrong. Evidently, money can buy you love: Disney paid George Lucas $4 billion for the Star Wars franchise in 2012. That puts a lot of pressure on whoever touches it, that kind of cash and cultural cachet. Veteran filmmaker J. J. Abrams takes it all in stride, but what about making your feature film debut in what might be the biggest film of all time? Daisy Ridley told People mag the prospect instilled in her an “overwhelming fear.” She overcame that, it seems. (You forget yourself when you have to fight a lot of intergalactic bad guys.) Ridley possesses the rare kind of luminous presence that makes a director take a chance on the biggest film of his already mega-sized career. She not only fits in with the other big stars in the cast, Ridley twinkles bright enough to match the stars out in the galaxy. Not so important in most films, but crucial in Star Wars.