As you may have already known, yesterday marks the debut of the DVD and Blu-ray release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. For the Star Wars fanatic inside of us, this gives us a ton of opportunity not just to relive the 7th instalment from the galaxy far, far away, but also offers us a closer look at every aspect of the film as it relates to the characters and the stories that bring along.
One particular scene that has been recently making waves in the Star Wars fandom community is where Adam Driver’s Kylo Ren was seen resting his helmet on top of a table full of ashes, specifically designed to be like an over-sized ash tray. It was the scene where Kylo Ren introduced himself to Rey by removing his mask and slamming it down on, as you may have guessed, the table of ashes.
The explanation for this rather odd scene was given by chance when Entertainment Weekly (EW) interviewed director J.J. Abrams about the film’s deleted scenes. “Sometimes bits and pieces of one scene end up being something that you use in another scene that you didn’t expect,” Abrams explained during the interview. “That’s always kind of fun, when you realize that something you’ve shot actually has a use you didn’t expect.”
Abrams pointed out the table of ashes scene as a prime example where fans are given a glimpse of the antagonist’s history and personality. “The backstory is, that that table has the ashes of the enemies he’s killed,” Abrams says. “That moment was actually shot for, and meant to be used in, the scene where he was talking to the Vader mask.” Ren’s table of ashes was originally kept in his private quarters as he implores his grandfather for guidance in ‘finishing off what he has started’.
“He originally had his mask off the first time we shot that scene. Then we reshot it with his mask on, but we had that shot which I loved and thought was so cool of the mask being slammed down into that ash,” Abrams explains. “So that shot was stolen from the scene that we had changed and put into the scene with Rey.” Abrams clearly knows how to develop his movie’s characters. The Rey interrogation scene was meant to show the darker history of Ren in a way that will strike fear and awe in his captive. “He used to place his mask gingerly onto a piece of the set, which was incredibly unimpressive,” Abrams says amusingly. “So this moment made it a much cooler beat.”
Brief as it may seem, the table of ashes scene gives us a different perspective on the twisted hoarding tendency of Hans Solo’s son, and the delight that he gets in keeping the incinerated remains of all of his foes. Such reveal from Abrams opens a lot of questions about Kylo Ren’s backstory: to whom do these ashes belong to? Does it refer also to the scores of padawans that he slaughtered under the watch of Luke Sykwalker? How far exactly has he gone through in order to finish what Vader has started? I guess these questions will remain unanswered until we get to see the next instalment of the Star Wars franchise.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens is now available in Digital HD, DVD and Blu-ray. A spinoff, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, is set to hit US theaters on December 16, 2016; Star Wars: Episode VIII on December 15, 2017, and the Han Solo Star Wars Anthology film on May 25, 2018. Star Wars: Episode IX is expected to reach theaters in 2019, followed by the third Star Wars Anthology film in 2020.