A week after Star Wars actor Kelly Marie Tran deleted her Instagram account, supposedly because of sexist and racist abuse she received from a minority of Star Wars fans, her co-star and onscreen love interest John Boyega has waded into the debate, calling out fans for their bad behaviour.
“If you don’t like Star Wars or the characters, understand that there are decision makers and harassing the actors/actresses will do nothing,” he wrote on Twitter.
“You’re not entitled to politeness when your approach is rude. Even if you paid for a ticket!”
Boyega addressed the issue in a few more lighthearted tweets later on, and he’s not the only Star Wars actor to criticise the fans after Tran’s social media blackout (though Tran herself has not commented on the record).
“On social media a few unhealthy people can cast a big shadow on the wall, but over the past 4 years I’ve met lots of real fellow SW fans,” The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson wrote on Twitter last week.
“We like & dislike stuff but we do it with humor, love & respect. We’re the VAST majority, we’re having fun & doing just fine.”
Luke Skywalker actor Mark Hamill, meanwhile, responded to the situation by posting a picture of himself with Tran and advising her haters to “get a life.”
And Tran isn’t even the only Star Wars actor to face trouble from online trolls, with actor Daisy Ridley similarly quitting Instagram after receiving a lot of negative comments.
“I posted a thing about gun regulations, because I was at an event in tribute to the Orlando shooting at Pulse,” Ridley told Glamour in December.
“People weren’t nice about how I looked. And I was like, ‘I’m out.’ Simple as that. That is not what I signed up for.”
All in all, then, it’s fair to say that a certain section of the Star Wars fandom is making life pretty unpleasant for any women involved with the blockbuster sci-fi series. Fingers crossed that situation gets a little better by the release of 2019’s Episode IX.
Star Wars Episode IX will be released in December 2019
Sign up to the Radio Times newsletter for the latest TV and entertainment news