kylo ren, adam driver, the force awakens, star wars, episode viiiWith the release of "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" last December, Disney and Lucasfilm proved they were committed to celebrating the legacy of George Lucas's original trilogy, and mimicking the feel of those first three films. While some critics were divided over whether or not "The Force Awakens's" homages to "A New Hope" went overboard with the similarities, fans ate it up, and it looks like moviegoers can expect more of the same when "Episode VIII" hits theaters next year.

In an interview with Collider, Adam Driver, who plays the Darth Vader-worshipping villain Kylo Ren, discussed working on his second "Star Wars" flick, and what it was like to collaborate with new director Rian Johnson. According to Driver, Johnson and "Force Awakens" director J.J. Abrams share a similar vision and work ethic, making the transition smooth for the cast and crew. And the actor teased that Johnson's script would continue the storylines that Abrams set up, while also differentiating itself from its predecessor.

"It's great," Driver said of the "Episode VIII" script. "It's similar to how 'The Empire Strikes Back' has a different tone. For that people always go 'oooh, it's dark' but I don't know that it necessarily is. It's just different in tone in a way that I think is great and necessary but also very clear. [Johnson] trusts [that] his audience is ready for nuance and ambiguity. He's not dumbing anything down for someone and that's really fun to play."

While Driver may argue that the shift in tone between "The Force Awakens" and "Episode VIII" isn't significant, the actor also told Collider that Johnson's film would explore Kylo Ren on a deeper level, and what we learned about the character in the previous flick was certainly sinister enough to suggest that there are even darker things ahead for the conflicted antagonist. We're curious to see what could be worse than (SPOILER ALERT) murdering your own father, and can't wait to find out if "Episode VIII" is as great as the much-revered "Empire."

"Star Wars: Episode VIII" is due in theaters on December 15, 2017.

[via: Collider]

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