John Boyega has been turning Star Wars fans’ heads since he was initially cast as lead in the already-blockbuster sequel, Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens.
While most of the attention has been positive — save for the occasional racist complaining about a black stormtrooper — many have puzzled as to just how big of a role he will play.
Since there is still over a month to go until audiences can answer that question for themselves when the film launches Dec. 18, there is little to do at this point but speculate.
Recently, Boyega hinted that his might be a face fans will have to get used to, recounting a story in which J.J. Abrams told him he was “the star” of the new trilogy (reported here by the Daily Mail).
The young Attack the Block actor has also taken a prominent role in “selling” the movie to audiences, further speaking to that point.
But what if…
What if J.J. Abrams’ use of John Boyega in such a high-profile capacity is part of his well-documented “mystery box” technique of maintaining an element of surprise for audiences?
Thus far, fans have pored over each trailer of The Force Awakens millions of times hoping to spot clues and signs that reveal to them where the story is heading.
As much as most fans want to be surprised, they will do anything in their power to “spoil” the experience similarly to how Trek fans speculated as to Benedict Cumberbatch’s identity in Star Trek Into Darkness.
From the two teasers and the full trailer — expertly cut together below — it appears there will be a great disturbance in the Force with this film.
As if the stakes are going to be raised considerably by the closing credits.
For that to happen, someone important will have to die.
The easy money says that will be either Oscar Isaacs’ character Poe Dameron, who is being tortured in the previews, or one of the old guard (likely Han Solo since Harrison Ford has been wanting to kill his famous character off for years).
Frankly, that all seems too obvious, and there is evidence that killing John Boyega instead is a direction that Abrams plans on going.
For starters, we know there will be a lightsaber duel between Boyega’s Finn and Kylo Ren (Adam Driver). Ren’s role appears to be considerably more substantial than Darth Maul’s was in The Phantom Menace, so fans should probably expect to see more of him in Episode VIII.
It also appears that Daisy Ridley’s Rey is force-sensitive, and that she will be pulling much of the film’s weight as protagonist. The vibe is that there isn’t enough room for two young Jedi-in-training, and that John Boyega may end up trying to take on Ren to save Rey from having to do the same.
He could heroically lose his life and give Rey something to fight for in the subsequent films.
One thing is certain — the forest battle looks a bit too dark and ominous to have a happy ending.
That’s why it makes more sense that John Boyega could bite the dust in this film as a jolt to the audience and a way of making everyone care about Rey’s journey.
Take a look at the trailer supercut below and see if you think this is a viable possibility.
From Abrams’ perspective, this would likely make a lot of sense because he’s of the old school that believes an audience shouldn’t know EVERYTHING about a movie before they watch it.
By selling Star Wars fans on a false hero in Finn, he may just succeed in saving an element of surprise for the millions, who will be watching.
[Image of John Boyega via Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens trailer]