• George Lucas’ prediction that attitudes towards the Star Wars prequels would change over time has proven to be true.
  • Ahmed Best and other actors from the prequels have spoken about how the backlash eventually turned into appreciation.
  • The younger generation has embraced both the prequels and characters like Jar Jar Binks, showing a shift in perception.

Jar Jar Binks and Jedi Master Kelleran Beq actor Ahmed Best recently shared the wisdom Star Wars creator George Lucas imparted when the prequel trilogy was receiving scathing criticism, and his words ended up ringing entirely true. Although Star Wars audiences have come around to the prequel trilogy, when the movies were released, they were considered some of Star Wars’ worst movies. The prequels are now largely celebrated among Star Wars movies and TV shows, but the backlash they initially received was significant, with new characters such as Jar Jar Binks being highly criticized.

Ahmed Best has expressed how difficult this backlash was for him; however, George Lucas provided incredible guidance. Best shared this insight from Lucas in an interview with Inverse:

“I think it’s wonderful the younger generations are embracing not only the prequels, but Jar Jar specifically. This is something that George kind of predicted when all the backlash happened. He was like, ‘Thirty years from now, nobody’s going to be talking about this.’ And it was tough to realize that in the moment, but now here we are, 25 years later, and he was right.”

George Lucas’ ability to anticipate how sentiments would change over time was no doubt informed by his experiences with the Star Wars franchise so far, but his foresight was nevertheless profound.


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George Lucas Understood That Star Wars Is A Generational Saga

In part, George Lucas’ wise stance on the criticism the prequel movies were receiving stemmed from his understanding of what Star Wars is as a franchise. While, of course, Star Wars is for everyone, and children are by no means the only viewers or fans, the movies are made for kids. This was certainly true for Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, which introduced characters like Jar Jar Binks to be entertaining.

At the time, however, it wasn’t the children who were communicating their displeasure with and even disdain for what the prequel trilogy was doing; rather, it was adult viewers and, perhaps even more so, critics. However, just as Lucas said, with time, those perceptions would shift. A major aspect of that shift lies in the passage of time. The children who went to see the prequel movies in theaters and loved them are now adults who can voice their appreciation for the trilogy. While it did sadly take decades, Lucas’ prediction was, luckily, correct.

The children who went to see the prequel movies in theaters and loved them are now adults who can voice their appreciation for the trilogy.

This shift didn’t only affect Ahmed Best, though. Other main characters from the Star Wars prequels were also subject to scathing criticism, Anakin Skywalker chief among them. Sadly, much of the vitriol was targeted at Jake Lloyd, the actor who portrayed young Anakin in The Phantom Menace. However, that backlash followed with Hayden Christensen’s portrayal of Anakin in Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones and Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith.

Since then, both Christensen and Obi-Wan Kenobi actor Ewan McGregor have articulated similar perspectives on how reception of the prequels has changed over time, identifying that it wasn’t young fans who were unhappy. Of course, it isn’t only the change in opinion regarding Jar Jar Binks that has changed Ahmed Best’s experience of the Star Wars franchise, as he also made his live-action debut as Jedi Master Kelleran Beq in The Mandalorian. In the end, it’s a comfort to know that George Lucas’ guidance about the reception of the Star Wars prequels proved to be true.

Source: Inverse


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