My brother and I were talking about this yesterday! He thinks the outcry is ridiculous, especially after we decided to tally the female characters in the original trio of movies. We came up with Leia, Luke’s Aunt that gets one line and dies, Torynn Farr the rebel communications officer who gets one line, Mon Mothma and a group of Jabba’s slaves. That’s…. Sad. I love the original Star Wars but that is kind of ridiculous. Deleted scenes and set pictures even show that there were female pilots on the cast, but all of their scenes were cut and their lines redubbed with male actors. They actually made an effort to diminish female background roles.
Then we went back and watched the force awakens again. And there are female characters EVERYWHERE. Female pilots on both sides, female poor people, female medics, female merchants, female spies, female mechanics, female soldiers… all of different races and ages, and it’s done in a way that doesn’t feel “oh look at our token chick on the team that can actually do things even though they are chicks see how progressive we are”. They are just there doing things. It’s wonderful. And there are also plenty of male characters that do the same. After seeing Disney pull that off, I have confidence that they will do the same with rogue one. And I’m certain that there will be plenty of cool male characters in the movie for the guys to fawn over. Neither my brother nor I could really understand the mentality of a person who sees that a movie has a female lead and instantly assumes that it’s feminazi propaganda. Why shouldn’t the lead be a woman?