Ava DuVernay’s note for J.J. Abrams on The Force Awakens added an vital emotional beat. Steven Spielberg, meanwhile, just wanted to blow shit up. Screencrush reports that on new director’s commentary Abrams notes two moments in the film that came from Spielberg. First, it was apparently Spielberg’s idea to have the TIE fighter Finn and Poe escape to explode after it crashes on Jakku. “He loved the idea that the thing get sucked into the sand and then… that!” Abrams explains in the track.
George Lucas’ old pal also advocated for more destruction in the climactic battle between Kylo Ren and Rey in the form of trees coming down. “He suggested ‘What if trees were falling while they were fighting?’ And I said ‘That’s cool, but we’ve shot the scene already,’” Abrams recounts.“And then I said to [visual effects supervisor] Roger Guyett, ‘Is there any way we could have trees falling?’ And he said, ‘If you want to pay for it.’ So we did.” These are relatively minor beats, but Spielberg likes when things go boom apparently.