Reylo in The Rise of Skywalker

The “will they, won’t they” aspect between Daisy Ridley‘s Rey and Adam Driver‘s Kylo Ren is a hotbed of divisiveness in the Star Wars fan community, and everyone is waiting to see how that relationship plays out in this month’s Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, which may be the final time these characters share the screen together.

In a new interview, director/co-writer J.J. Abrams addresses the “profound” connection between them, how they’ve matured, and more.

We have officially entered the Star Wars onslaught period, when we’re getting so consistently pummeled with news stories, interviews, and TV spots that it’s as if we’ve entered the path of an oncoming asteroid field. Today’s asteroid? A new chat between J.J. Abrams and Vanity Fair, in which he talked all about “Reylo” (in case you’ve been living under a rock, that’s the fan nickname for the Rey and Kylo Ren relationship).

Abrams says they’re “connected in this profound way, drawn to each other, curious about each other, knowledgeable about each other.” He also points to the talents of the actors who embody them, praising Ridley for her breakthrough work in The Force Awakens and saying she hit a new level in The Rise of Skywalker:

“But I look at what she’s done in this film, and I’m so awestruck by her maturity and her nuance and the power that she brought to this part. As challenging as I knew this movie was going to be for me as a director, I also knew it was going to be extraordinarily challenging for her. And she exceeded my wildest dreams of what she might do.”

Naturally, Abrams was also impressed by Driver’s growth in this film, saying this iteration of Kylo Ren is “no less broken, but far more controlled”:

“Adam, as well, goes to a far deeper, more interesting, compelling, and subtle place with his character. When we met Kylo, he was almost like a bit of an adolescent. He would sort of rage. He aspired to a kind of power and control, but he was out of control…Having assumed the position of Supreme Leader, he comes to the story a much more mature figure while still, in his own way, raging.”

Abrams evidently wouldn’t comment about whether or not a possible full-on romance between them would flourish in this sequel, but he did shoot down a theory about the Red Thread of Fate which some fans thought represented a deeper connection between the two. You can read more of Abrams’ quotes in the full piece at VF.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker hits theaters on December 20, 2019.

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