Star Wars: The Force Awakens - Why I Don't Want a Second More of Footage Before Release

(Photo: Lucasfilm)

This is an opinion piece. That opinion is held solely by the writer, and smart people everywhere.

I am incredibly excited for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. I bought my tickets for opening night within the first three minutes of seeing a report that they were on sale. I've watched all the trailers several times - if I had to hazard a guess, I'd say cumulatively easily 100 times. I've been eating up the "Journey to the Force Awakens" books and comics, I've analyzed and discussed theories (though I don't want to do that too much), and I fully anticipate seeing this movie in theaters at least five times.

But I don't want to see another trailer. I don't want to see a TV spot that has even one second of new, additional footage. What we've gotten so far is great, and I don't want any more, until I get the movie.

It's a weird idea, and one that I've never felt or held before. I can watch four trailers and 30 TV spots for the latest Marvel Studios release, or see concept art and hear inside information, and still go enjoy the film. I know that having information ahead of time doesn't spoil my excitement or the end result for me. But there's something special about Star Wars.

Star Wars is my favorite franchise, my personal biggest fandom. I've written columns about it, done interviews about it, and even occasionally written for the official website, which is a dream come true. I've been to and covered the last three Star Wars Celebration conventions professionally, and I've talked about Star Wars as an expert on news shows, radio, and convention panels. It's a huge part of my life, and that's a big part of wanting to keep the experience special.

Another large part of wanting to go in fresh is the desire to recreate the feeling I got the first time I saw the films. Before I saw the original trilogy, I knew very little about Star Wars. All I knew of it was from a few of my older brother's action figures, and the scene reenactments he did with LEGOs (mind you, this is the early/mid-80s, so these were all hand-built, none of those fancy licensed sets you kids get today). In fact, both of my biggest fandoms came from my brother introducing me to them with LEGO, as he also built a scale model of Soldier Field, but I digress. The unique sense of awe you can only get when you go into something with little to no knowledge cannot be matched. When I saw Star Wars the first time, it was also the first time I'd heard that John Williams score. It was the first time I saw a lightsaber ignite, or heard Darth Vader's breathing. It made me concentrate on everything a bit more, really focus on taking in every second. I think that's largely why it had such an impression on my young mind, and why it sticks with me today.

Now, obviously, I'm older, and my job includes writing about Star Wars. The anticipation for this film also meant there was no way I was missing those first two teasers, and the first (and only) full trailer. Seeing the second teaser was an especially magical moment. Being in a stadium with 4,000 fans who knew and loved Star Wars the way I did, and with the cast sitting on stage watching it for the first time too, was a feeling unmatched. The emotions flowed through all of us and it was the closest to harnessing the Force I've ever been.

That's the feeling I got from 90 seconds of footage, and it's the feeling I want to experience for the full movie, with my wife and friends by my side and a full theater the night of opening all eagerly waiting for the next moment.


So that means I don't want anymore. I know just enough right now to know that Poe's going to be one of my new favorite heroes, that I'm going to fall for Rey, that Kylo Ren and Captain Phasma will be powerful and intimidating, that Finn will have "hell yes" moments and seeing the Millennium Falcon soaring on the big screen is going to make me cry. I know that these characters are a part of me, both those new and old, and while I eagerly anticipate getting to know them, I can also wait for their full story.

That's why I don't want to see anymore footage until the film comes out, and you might not want to, either.