J.J. Abrams Made Phone Calls About Missing Rey from Star Wars: The Force Awakens Merch
J.J. Abrams has also asked '#WheresRey,' but when he does it, you know manufacturers are [...]
J.J. Abrams has also asked "#WheresRey," but when he does it, you know manufacturers are listening. When the writer/director of Star Wars: The Force Awakens heard about Hasbro's new Star Wars Monopoly game, he said he was "quickly making phone calls."
Of course, he, like the rest of the world, seemed to only notice Rey's absence as a character token in the game about five months after its release. The game, released on "Force Friday" in September, has Luke Skywalker, Finn, Darth Vader, and Kylo Ren as its only four characters.
"It seems preposterous and wrong that the main character of the movie is not well-represented in what is clearly a huge piece of the Star Wars world, in terms of merchandising," Abrams told The Wrap after a TCA panel for Hulu's 11.22.63, which he's executive producing. "It doesn't quite make sense to me why she wouldn't be there — she's somewhat important in the story," he said with noted sarcasm.
The primary complaints come from the aforementioned Star Wars Monopoly and a character variety pack exclusive to Target, both produced by Hasbro. The variety pack includes a helmeted Poe Dameron, Finn, Chewbacca, Kylo Ren, and generic First Order Stormtrooper and TIE fighter Pilot. Unlike the Monopoly game, there's not even the excuse of it spanning the entire franchies - this is billed specifically as a The Force Awakens action figure pack, and it include zero female characters - including the main character of the film. That's led to many negative reviews of the set on Target's website - including some that have noted that in addition to Rey being missing, Chewbacca seems to be missing a foot in many of the packs, as well.
Of the Rey figures that are on the market, many have been hard to find, both in stores and online (at least at retail - many outlets, including Amazon.com, are selling figures as much as double or triple their retail price). The Rey and BB-8 Disney Store Elite series figure was re-released when the film opened, now including the blue lightsaber that once belonged to both Luke and Anakin Skywalker. Since its re-release, it has consistently sold out in Disney Stores and online, though as of press time it is available on the DisneyStore.com site. Similar stocking issues have been anecdotally reported regarding the Rey Funko bobble-head, and the Rey Black Series from the aforementioned Hasbro. An Unmasked Kylo Ren re-release was also made available in the Elite line, and has also faced availability issues.