Ahead of the release of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, we spoke to leading lady Daisy Ridley, who plays Rey, to gain her thoughts on robots, starships...and stamps
What was it like to work with new droid BB-8?
It was great. I actually began [The Force Awakens] working with droids, so when I began working with humans, I thought, “No! Give me more droids, I don’t like interacting with humans.”
Obviously he’s a robot but… what’s he like?
He properly has a personality, he’s moving all the time, and the noises, and head movements – it’s like you’re really talking to something with a soul. So it’s great.
So you bonded with him?
Oh my God, yes! It was so weird, whenever they turned him off, me and John [Boyega] would say, “Nooo!” His head would just fall to the side. It was sad.
And you completed combat training…
Three months of training. An hour of fitness every day, four hours of stunt training, gun training, climbing. I needed to look ‘bigger’, because JJ wanted me to look like I could haul big bits of Star Destroyer.
Which of the original Star Wars characters do you think is the most like Rey?
Luke probably, because Rey also starts off from humble beginnings, and then goes off on a massive adventure. She’s a pilot, like Han, and she’s a kickass woman, like Princess Leia.
You get to pilot the Millennium Falcon. Did you get proper tuition?
No! But Harrison said, “You can’t keep pressing buttons, you have to test it and see what it does before you go on to the next button.” Whereas I just went, “Dun-dun-dun-dun” [mashes keyboard manically].
He sounds wise.
Yeah, he’s lovely. And so clear on what he’s doing, and what is going to be best for the scene. Watching him and JJ work together was inspiring.
Was the cast fun?
John and I get on really well, so it was super-fun. Our relationship is reflected in the characters’ relationship in the film. And then for the past year it’s been really nice to have someone who provides support.
You can get Rey and BB-8 stamps. Do you own any?
I don’t have one. I went to the post office to send something and there was a big poster with them on and I had to take a picture. It felt weird.