Riseofskywalker, Adam Driver, Girls, J.J. Abrams, Long Reads, Noah Baumbach, Star Wars The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker

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Dark Star Rising

How Adam Driver’s angst and brooding intensity made the world fall in love with a ‘Star Wars’ supervillain

2.12.2019

Adam Driver appears on our December cover as part of our RiseofSkywalker package. In the profile, he discusses the end of the saga, why he sympathizes with Kylo Ren and more

How Adam Driver ’s angst and brooding intensity made the world fall in love with a ‘Star Wars’ supervillain

Adam Driver is Kylo Ren in STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER.

after Labor Day, Driver is back in his home neighborhood of Brooklyn Heights after a weekend at the Telluride Film Festival, where Scorsese personally adorned him with a silver medallion for acting greatness. We meet near the waterfront, where Driver shows up with a brownish dog on a leash. “This is Moose,” he says, making a formal introduction. Moose is part Rottweiler, part mystery breed, part pit bull, and his owner is a fierce defender of pits. “They’re great dogs,” he says. “It’s just they have shitty owners. That’s why they’re bad.”

Driver’s focus “can be helpful sometimes,” he says. “It’s also a hamster wheel of wasted energy.” He says the Telluride honor and Scorsese tribute left him feeling “joy,” but he can’t help sounding bummed out when he discusses it. “I mean, actually what I thought is, ‘Oh, well, now there’s something to live up to.’ ”

, meanwhile, offers an eyebrow-raising intersection with Driver’s life story: He joined the Marines after 9/11, intending to fight in the very war that devolved into the torture-laden interrogations his character spends the movie investigating.

After the Marines, he found his way to Juilliard, and eventually to an audition room for an HBO show called

Somewhere in there, though it doesn’t quite fit the narrative of monastic overachievement, Driver did have some species of fun. “I did do drugs,” he tells me, when I note how impressive his hilariously coked-up entrance in

trilogy — and what he believed to be Kylo Ren’s final

Plus, as usual, he was worrying whether he had done enough takes. “It was just the weight of it. You’re finally sitting, and you have six hours to think about your last shot. Did I get it right? Was this line right? Was that right? There’s lots of things to process.”

universe was “not an easy yes. I took a while to think about it,” he said. “Just because people can remake something, or revisit a world, doesn’t necessarily mean they should. I’ve seen a lot of bigger-budget movies that sacrifice character and stories for spectacle, and I had no idea what it was going to look like or what the script was. But the first words out of J.J.’s mouth were about character and story. It was all really cool. And even then, you have doubts. Can I live up to that? I’m a fan of the movies. You don’t want to fuck it up, by any means. It seemed that because I was scared of it, maybe it was a good reason to do it.”

Driver always played Kylo Ren as younger than his actual age, and it’s the unformed aspect of the character that helps make him compelling. A confused, angry man-boy radicalized by powerful forces whispering in his ear, an heir to generational trauma raised in an era of endless war, is an all-too-believable threat. But when you get glimpses of him as pre-Dark Side Ben Solo, the character is also unexpectedly sympathetic, even as he’s nearly weeping in frustration as he commands an entire army to train their lasers on Luke Skywalker.

There is an undeniable onscreen chemistry between Driver and Ridley, and the films have been teasing a connection, maybe even a romantic one, between their characters. And fans, being fans, have responded by going wild over the whole thing, with a passionate group of so-called Reylos advocating for the relationship. A common objection, which I pose to Driver, is that Kylo has done horrible things (murdered most of his Jedi-training classmates, killed his dad, almost blasted his mom, had stormtroopers murder innocent villagers, walked around shirtless in high-waisted pants). “I mean, of course I’m sympathetic to him and I understand,” Driver says. “But I can see on the outside, if I analyzed it, which I don’t, that someone who’s killed his class doesn’t really seem to be good boyfriend material.” To be fair, the Reylos acknowledge that Kylo must experience redemption — Bendemption, naturally — before love can flourish.

. “He’s almost like a spoiled rich kid who has to evolve into something,” says Driver. “He’s following his path of finding who he is. You might have had to metaphorically, or in this case literally, kill your father to find out who you are. To be your own person, at a certain point you have to claim it.” He offers a half-smile. “But then again, we never really figure out who we are.”

Read more: Rolling Stone

TinyLilCloud Someone replace the helmet with a basketball tonyvodkaa Awesome iutoda i- Least favorite villain fo sho I’m wet 😰😰😰 he can force choke me this is porn bertisagirl Ehhhh

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such an amazing actor I simply hate the whole kylo ren thing. Outfit character weakness helmet name !! 🤢🤢🤮 The Force is testing us. This is porn, indeed 😉 Because the man is awesome. Ahora que no me oye nadie, a mi es que este hombre me pone muchísimo. To be fair, SW fans would do this to anyone. FameGame

Hotness again!🔥🔥🔥

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Let's not forget Adams sense of dry humor and wit. Hmmm No. I hate Kylo Ren. He killed Han Solo. He is beyond redemption and i hope Rey kills him (but i know it wont happen). My fave part: His frequent collaborator Baumbach says Driver “brings added majesty” to his lines A aracnephobia le gusta esto. Goddamnit I would KILL to style/design one of his shoots!! 😭😎

🔥🔥🔥🔥 AdamDriver BenSolo kyloren StarWars TheRiseOfSkywalker Hot take he's just if Vader was an internet incel his power His grandfather way better than him. Drop the HD. I beg. Me at this adam photoshoot:

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I've long fallen in love with him waaay before Star Wars when he played Adam on HBO's GIRLS Eww no How much does Disney pay for this sort of thing y u do this to me the dark side . . . and the light He is like having a conversation with the mask, the Self, the Facade he can't killed it if he has to, to be who he meant to be. Hating it, loving it... Adam romancing 'Kylo'.

I look at Kylo (esp. Force Awakens Kylo) and see Joffrey Baratheon. Like, it wouldn’t take much before he’s beating on you with a hot iron poker... or a lightsaber. Am I alone in that? cyber_tits Dark Star Rising! adamdriver How Adam Driver’s angst and brooding intensity made the world fall in love with a ‘Star Wars’ supervillain

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HazelMonforton I mean Adam Driver kills in this role but every time I see that helmet I cant help but wonder if he moonlights as a backup member of Daft Punk. I love him so much jjabrams he'd better make it out of this movie!! kylo ren is a mass-murdering, emotionally- & physically-abusive, manipulative fuckwit who actively fights against being good & deserves no redemption arc or adoration

ugh. What else has he done ? Cant say ive heard of him .... D a d d y 🤧 I WASNT READY This is the best phew sleemo_ Who allowed him to reck my life like this Who allowed him to look this darn good OMG we have no choice but to Stan

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I straight up laughed,loudly, in the theater when he took that helmet off for the first time. The freakish boy toy from “Girls” trying to fill the gap left by Vader. Right. Or maybe he's just a good actor. CoffeeWthKenobi Pretty sure it was actually when Kylo was shirtless that did it. 💁🏻‍♂️ A warning would be nice

Not this starWars fan 😡😡😡😡😡

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He can hold his helmet with just one hand 😲 i love him & his deep voice The edginess is TOO INTENSE. Edgeoverload threedaysgrave Beautiful just beautiful 👌🏼🥰 Sir sleemo_ Better than the porn 🥵 MalCantSpell just making sure you've seen this. you bet he did He needs more publicity and more movie opportunities. Awkward in a beautiful way and hot! (In a way, the Keanu Reeves for the mill. gen.) -Of course Driver is his own person with his own stellar talent. I don't get why the youth gen. is not all over him?

DownloaderBot Least intimidating SW antagonist ever. mpychu Ohmygawd Phenomenal talent I think i'm 9 months pregnant now

ROLLING STONE I’M SUING YOU. yo wtf He😥😥😥👌👌👌 EYE- this_vid AdamDriverUK 1 word : Bless you for this HES SO FCKING SEYXYYYYYYY😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭 Never forget

💕💕💕 I approve this. And I need more. You guys went through all of our thirst tweets to get the ideas for this huh? LunaLyrik thought you would like this 😏 AdamDriverUK So, this guy is the villain. Right? Never has a 15 second clip owned me like this. This deserves AdamDriver applause. Looking forward to the profile...hope there’s details on MarriageStory too...adored that movie and cannot wait to see it again when it drops on Netflix Friday.

WHAT GAVE YOU THE RIGHT TO DO THIS TO ME ROLLING STONE?!!?!?!?!?!? this video is as if someone plucked the perfect adam photoshoot idea from my mind. thank you, carlos serrao and monica may. i owe you my life. Put this on my headstone Boring Literally everything you will ever need to know about the zodiac sign Scorpio in 15 fucking seconds.

Dude's so hot he made steam looked cool. Thanks god I am 18 because this is porn _afterblossom_ Okay, ya got me. That is Hot. adam

😎😎😎 OMG OMG OMG Fantastic article!!!! 'And maybe it’s not redemption, per se, but Kylo Ren is headed somewhere, always has been — Driver says he and Abrams early on discussed an arc for the character that will, at least in part, come to fruition in Rise of Skywalker.' 'not redemption'❓ 'at least in part'❓ 😶😶😶

sleemo_ Everyone, give thanks to Brian Hiatt for this MASTERPIECE. 💕💗💜💞💖💓💘💝 😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍 This video of Adam should come with a warning cause it will ruin your expectations in men

So so hot in here!🔥🔥🔥 GirlswSabers omg i cant breathe Are you trying to kill me here?! you're doing great Kylo Ren, worst character in modern history Holy god. TAG YOUR PORN Is this porn? ADAM. ADAM. 🤯🤯 Seriously I’m dead, this is high end Art™️

'I could not believe how crappy the script was, but the money was amazing, so what the hell,' said Driver. The love of my life. 🔥🔥🔥 Mi god!! So handsome!! 🔥💕 Wow. Just wow. WHO DID THIS? GIVE THOSE PEOPLE A RAISE

It’s too much! I can’t! The movies suck but the paycheck must be glorious. shirlyxgurl Not a bad way to start the week! 🖤 bensolosrise Damn damn are you trying to k!ll us with this hotness?! ARE Y'ALL FCKING SERIOUS i DEAD “There’s something in having an antagonist who is a little more vulnerable,” Adam Driver says of Kylo Ren. “That seems to be more relatable and human than just someone who is a psychopath.” Read our profile on the StarWars villain:

the only man ever

'The Report (in which Driver plays Daniel J. Jones, the real-life whistle-blower who leaked a damning investigation on the full extent of U.S. torture of terror suspects)' Is this even true? DJJ did not leak anything, did he? Wasn't that report officially released? 😶 RECTANGLE

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