Adam Driver is talking candidly about the evolution of his role in Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
According to the actor who portrayed Kylo Ren in the Star Wars followup trilogy, the villain was not meant to turn out to be good in the end. Following a visit on The Rich Eisen Show, Driver remembered that “J.J. Abrams walked me through what he wanted to do with the character, but you had to sign up and be like, ‘I’m gonna do it,’ and once I did that, I went to London to star for pre-production. And it’s like, ‘There’s a tiny room down the hall, you can go in there and read the script.’ And so I was reading it for the first time.”
He further added, “I had an overall arc that in mind that [Abrams] wanted to do. His idea was that [Kylo’s] journey was the opposite journey of Vader, where Vader starts the most confident and the most committed to the dark side. And then by the last movie, he’s the most vulnerable and weak. He wanted to start with the opposite. This character was the most confused and vulnerable, and by the end of the three movies, he would be the most committed to the dark side. I tried to keep that arc in mind, regardless if that wound up not being the journey anyway, because it changed while shooting. But I was still focused on that.”
In The Force Awakens, The Last Jedi, and The Rise of Skywalker, Driver portrayed Kylo Ren. The protagonist was handled in a different path by Rian Johnson, the director of The Last Jedi. “The last one, it changed into being, you know, about them and the dyad, and things like that,” Driver remarked. “And evolving into Ben Solo. That was never a part of it. He was Ben Solo from the beginning, but there was never a version where we’d see Ben Solo when I first signed up for it.”