The Los Angeles Times ran a Q&A today with J.J. Abrams, the director of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” He talks about the powerful communal experience of watching the film in a theater, which ties in well with the mythic elements of “Star Wars” that I commented on a few weeks ago.
Here’s Abrams on seeing the original film when he was eleven years old, and what he hopes audiences will experience in the new film:
“But to go into a theater and to get to experience that thing that I just remember so clearly as an 11-year-old, seeing [the original Star Wars “A New Hope”] and feeling and hearing and experiencing that adventure with a crowd. That communal power – that literally is at the center of what “Star Wars” is all about: the idea that we’re all connected somehow and that the Force surrounds and binds all of us together. The movie was literally doing the thing that it was talking about it and proving its point in a way.
In this age where we all have this thing in our pockets that we feel so connected through but is also isolating, the thing that will be, for me, the most exciting and would make this feel like it was a successful enterprise would be if people in those theaters, hundreds at a time, are looking up at one thing together and getting to laugh together and scream and cry and feel exhilaration together.
If that can happen and there can be a communal experience, I will feel like we did our job. ”
The full Q&A is at LA Times.