Last week, Mark Hamill was promoting his new film Brigsby Bear at the Sundance film festival when Lucasfilm officially announced that Star Wars: Episode VIII was titled The Last Jedi. In an interview with Vulture, Hamill revealed how shocked he was after the bitter response to the Star Wars prequels left generations of fans divided in their love for the franchise:
“I couldn’t believe some of the things they wrote about the prequels, you know. I mean really, beyond ‘I didn’t like it’. I’m still angry about the way they treated Jake Lloyd. He was only ten years old, that boy, and he did exactly what George wanted him to do. Believe me, I understand clunky dialog.”
Mark Hamill went further to add that he was almost interviewed for the 2010 documentary The People vs. George Lucas which saw die-hard fans of the franchise come together, targeting creator George Lucas himself to voice their frustrations with Episodes I-III:
“I almost got hornswoggled into that documentary. They weren’t calling it ‘The People vs George Lucas’ at the time. But I could tell from the questions they were asking me that it was an open invitation to trash George. And I have issues with George, but I love that man I would never…you know I don’t talk outside the family. It’s just brutal…”
Whether you loved the Star Wars prequels or hated them, there is no doubt any child should have ever had to endure the backlash that Jake Lloyd did for his performance as Anakin Skywalker in The Phantom Menace. Following the prequels, Lloyd quit acting in 2001. The former actor was diagnosed with schizophrenia just last year after spending 10 months in prison for failing to stop his vehicle when requested by a police officer.
You can check out the full video with Mark Hamill here.