It's been more than eight months since Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker premiered, and fans learned the truth about Rey's origin. During the Sept. 8 episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Daisy Ridley spoke to Josh Gad about her character's lineage and how she almost ended up being tied to a different character completely.
As fans of the trilogy are well aware (warning: spoilers ahead), the movie revealed that Rey is actually a descendant of Emperor Palpatine. But according to Ridley, filmmakers contemplated other options when it came to Rey's family history.
"At the beginning, there was toying with, like, an Obi-Wan connection," she explained. "There were like different versions."
The story of Rey's ancestry had certainly taken several twists and turns over the years. When Rian Johnson directed 2017's The Last Jedi, for instance, it seemed like the character had come from no one. As he once explained to Vanity Fair, he liked the idea of "breaking out from the notion that the Force is this genetic thing that you have to be tied to somebody to have."
"It's the ‘anybody can be president' idea, which I liked introducing," Johnson told the magazine in 2018. "The foremost thing, though, was just dramatically, storytelling-wise."
"And then it came to Episode IX, and J.J. pitched me the film and was like, 'Oh yeah, Palpatine's granddaddy,'" Ridley told Gad. "And I was like, 'Awesome.' And then, two weeks later, he was like, 'Oh, we're not sure.' So, it kept changing. So then, even while filming, I wasn't sure what the answer was going to be."
Watch the video to see the interview.