Vice Interviews Ahmed Best

Online news site Vice interviewed Ahmed Best about the TPM backlash, how it affected him and Jake Lloyd, new Star Wars, etc.

As I read it, it reminded me of just how crummy this fandom is and how crummy people are on the internet. I’ve got a post coming soon about why peace, love, and warm fuzzy feelings about Star Wars fandom are impossible for me.

H/T Eddie, who Tweeted the link late last night.

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41 Responses to “Vice Interviews Ahmed Best”

  1. Jacobesico Says:

    I never really get why some “fans” hate Jar Jar. I like him and I enjoy watching him.

    I am proud to be a Jar Jar fan and the best bit is that you can render some of the OT blowhards speechless by defending him to the hilt.

  2. piccolojr1138 Says:

    I don’t care much about the “fandom” (maybe because I have no social relations with them), it’s the medias who are to blame… Their job is to be precise and accurate, not to repeat all the bullshit they read on the internet.

  3. Jacobesico Says:

    I usually find the more vocal Star Wars fans obnoxious and their ignorance is staggering. I don’t know why they call themselves fans when all they do is hate hate hate. They would make very good Sith.

    The only instances where I feel positive about fandom are on here and on the odd Youtube video where a fan tells the haters where to go.

    I sometimes don’t know why I bother reading the comments in some of the articles. These people aren’t fans. They’re trolls!

    I never really follow the crowd to be honest. I don’t give a damn about the Disney Canon and I’ll probably ignore Episode 7.

    I just find it best to love Star Wars from afar.

    • Nick Skywalker Says:

      I don’t know how they can call themselves fans at all considering they bash 4 out of the 6 films and do nothing but complain and throw nasty hate at the very man who created the saga.

  4. Boba's Vette Says:

    I wasn’t crazy about Jar Jar but never hated him. Over the years I’ve grown to like his character. Watching my kids enjoy Jar Jar in the movies helps too. If “10” is love and “1” is hate, I’m at about a “7” with him. I understand why some people don’t really like him, but hating him is a stretch. The worst is how haters use Jar Jar as the face of the prequel trilogy. When The Phantom Menace 3D came out, some of the hateboy media would plop a huge image of Jar Jar at the beginning of their article. And what followed was just a mess of snark, hate, and links to the RLM video.

    • Bob Clark Says:

      I was never crazy about him, but I like him a hell of a lot better than the comic relief you get in a lot of other movies. I like him better than the Scooby Doo hobbits in the Lord of the Ring movies. I like him better than any quip-snapping cannon fodder in Joss Whedon movies/shows. And I like him WAY better than Simon Pegg in anything.

      Do I think he’s great? No. But I think he’s tolerable. Which is more than I can say of any of them.

      I will say this– he’s several places below Yoshi in my heart.

      • Adam D. Bram (The Nilbog) Says:

        I’ll admit I went back and forth.

        Age 12-19: BEST CHARACTER EVER!

        20: Okay, he’s kind of stupid.

        21-23: Well, he might be an idiot, but he’s our idiot.

        24-29 (present): Oh my god, he is totally me! I UNDERSTAND everything! BEST CHARACTER EVER!

  5. bansheegun Says:

    He’s a really stand up guy and I love the fact that he viewed Jake Lloyd as a little brother whom he felt protective of. He seems like a good person all around!

  6. Adam D. Bram (The Nilbog) Says:

    Jar Jar Lives!

    As an aside, I hope as time goes on he meets more people who laud him for BEING their childhood as opposed to accusing him of ruining it.

  7. Evangelos Says:

    ”Man,Jar Jar was a huge mistake,what the hell were we thinking…I mean,the fans are right,they’re always ri…”What,no?He actually stands up for George?We should give him a medal or something.For me,the best part was this:”…People really wanted to see George crash and burn”.He hit the nail on the head with that one.

  8. discoewok Says:

    I always dug Jar Jar and his place in the saga. This past week I’ve been revisiting another franchise I love, Harry Potter. I hadn’t seen Chamber of Secrets in a long-o time-o but man, I really don’t care for Dobby the elf. I don’t mean to tear one thing down in order to lift up another, but I find this character more irritating and the fx not done as well as Jar Jar. I don’t feel like Dobby gets a fraction of the criticism though. Regardless, I appreciate the effort in bringing the character to life onscreen.

    As far as bringing characters to life go, I think TPM Jar Jar and Watto hold up extremely well and appear photorealistic even 16 years later. I never look at them and think “That’s CGI” I just totally buy into the characters. Well done, George & Co.

  9. Nick Skywalker Says:

    I found 3PO in TESB MUCH more annoying that Jar Jar ever was. I don’t understand the hate. Is he grating at times? Yes but the amount of vitriolic hate Jar Jar gets is overkill.

    • discoewok Says:

      What’s lost on most people is that all the other characters found him odd too. He’s not supposed to be the cool ‘chewie’ of the PT.

    • jarjarbacktattooguy Says:

      Threepio…what a whiney little bitch!

      But Jar Jar is the one people won’t invite to lunch at Fudruckers?

  10. may_child Says:

    I replied to some of the turds. They seem quite taken aback and can only offer lame retorts, like, “Even if you like the movie, it isn’t Citizen Kane.”

  11. rynnbowers Says:

    TOM was the first ever star wars movie I had ever seen. Next to Padme Amidala, Jar Jar Binx was and forever will be my favorite character. I dont get the hate for him…ok for Jake Lloyd either.

  12. Brian47 Says:

    I was at a Memorial Day party a few years at which Ahmed Best attended. I never would’ve expected this and I excitedly told my girlfriend that I just had to talk to with him. He was with his family but we still had a nice conversation, I asked about Clone Wars, his time on set for the movies, what else he’s been up to, etc. He was a super nice guy and I’m glad I got the chance to talk with him in a normal party setting.

  13. ladylavinia1932 Says:

    I rather liked Jar-Jar a lot. Yes, he can be irritating. But I had assumed that was a part of his character. The odd thing is that the older I got, the more I noticed how funny some of his dialogue is. I also noticed that the older I got, the more I found Han Solo (of all people) rather irritating. Which is strange.

    I also saw Best in person at the Farmer’s Market in Los Angeles a few years ago. I didn’t point him out to my family, because they would have made a big deal making nasty remarks about the Jar-Jar character. And I didn’t approach him, because I was too shy. But I’m glad I saw him. It was a thrill.

  14. Heidi Says:

    The more I’ve gotten to know Jar Jar, the better I understood him. He’s actually quite self-sacrificing and always willing to take a hit for another person. He’s always trying to do his best and is very supportive. Remember that one clone wars episode to rescue Obi-wan and Anakin from the pirates? Even the clone trooper knew not to under estimate him.

    As for the article, I just can bring myself to read it, any hate that these actors get for doing and excellent job on screen is unreasonable, and makes my heart sad.

  15. jarjarbacktattooguy Says:

    Jar Jar is to Star Wars what Dustin Diamond (Screech) was to Saved By the Bell.

    We all can’t be Jedi Knights, or princesses, or rich preppie kids with big brick cell phones and totally keen mullets.

    We all can’t be Harrison Ford, or Natalie Portman, or Mario Lopez, or Tiffani (Amber) Thiessen.

    However, if we’re lucky enough, maybe we get to meet and know people like they are. Maybe we can play our part in the world.

    Jar Jar and Screech are us, the completely average shmucks who occasionally get the chance to be a part of something important. They are us, the ones who make bad decisions sometimes. They are us, the ones with big greasy afros, and who occasionally step in poo in the desert.

    Maybe that’s what the haters really dislike about these characters. They want to see the dashing, beautiful people on the screen, but they don’t want to see themselves.

    • Noah Says:

      If I could post a photo of a clapping bunny, I would =D This is an excellent statement! (And this is coming from someone who never watched Saved by the Bell). I especially liked “They want to see the dashing, beautiful people on the screen, but they don’t want to see themselves”; which is also why a majority of audiences like impossibly too-nice-to-be-true Pixar characters but dislike very human and full of different emotion and attitude characters from different films and studios’.

      • jarjarbacktattooguy Says:

        Thanks, Noah.

        Saved By the Bell is a very silly show, a forerunner to today’s Disney and Nick sitcoms aimed specifically at middle/elementary school children.

        So, I would recommend almost any 80s/early 90s sitcom that features teens instead. They dealt with teen issues far more earnestly than SBTB did.

        Yet somehow, the show has become a cultural touchstone. I guess there is hope for prequel fans, if a dumb show like this can generate all this attention years later.

        I went to high school during the original shows run, so it is fun to watch for the nostalgia…and all the neon! I also liked that the actors were actually high school-aged teens.

        Dustin Diamond was indeed, very funny as Screech, the nerdy character. The other kids were pretty good looking (Tiffani!), so I could definitely relate to the weird one instead.

      • lazypadawan Says:

        Did you see the hopelessly camp Lifetime movie about SBTB?

    • Dave Strohmenger Says:

      “We all can’t be Jedi Knights”. Well if the rumors about Ep 7 are to be believed, we can. Apparently the Force will be “awakening” in everyone, meaning that anyone can tap into the Force (which is their way of getting around midicholorians).

      • jarjarbacktattooguy Says:

        I thought everyone had midi-chlorians within them, yet only those who would become Jedi had a higher number in them.

        Organized religion teaches that we all can be God-like, yet Jesus and Buddha are very special.

        The force created Anakin because it sensed there was a disturbance in the force with the reemergence of the Sith. What kind of threat now faces the galaxy that the force must activate the force powers of all individuals?

        We are all one with the force, so the force can awaken its innate powers within us. Whereas before, the Jedi had the ability to awaken the force within themselves.

        We all have the creative and destructive powers of God/the universe/science/the force within us.

      • Stefan Kraft Says:

        That everyone could become a Jedi would not be bad per se – as long as it fits into the mythology of SW. An interpretation like the one by jarjarbacktatooguy would indeed work (I am not sure whether I would really like it – but that’s just me).
        If the “everyone can become a Jedi” twist is however one blatant “we fix the errors the PT made regarding the Force”, well, I will not be so inclined to accept it…

      • Hunk a Junk Says:

        Stefan, If TFA is about the Force “awakening” so that “everyone can be a Jedi” then, yes, it’s all about “fixing the errors of the PT.” Why else bother? If midis weren’t mentioned and defined in the PT, then there’s simply no reason to make a point about how things are now changing. It’s also obvious considering the company JJ keeps (cough** Simon Pegg). Midis are in the top 5 of things hateboys want to change about Star Wars. They’re getting their wish.

      • Stefan Kraft Says:

        Hunk a Jung, the problem is that I do not completely disagree with you, this could indeed be a “let’s fix the Force after the PT” thing. However, I also see this as a possible interpretation (that might fit into GL’s narrative): the Force has become stronger because it is finally in balance so that even living things with a “low midichlorian count” can use it. (After all, every living thing is connected to and part of the Force thanks to the midichlorians.) Jarjarbacktattooguy’s interpretation is close to this one.

        If the characters however suddenly scream around “midichlorians are no longer needed !!!11” then I will turn green like Yoda. Or the Hulk. 😉

      • lazypadawan Says:

        I’ve heard about this rumor and to me it sounds like Star Wars for the Everybody Gets A Trophy generation. I sincerely hope it’s not true.

      • Noah Says:

        Hunk a Junk, what you said about the hateboys getting their wish, it sounds an awful lot like terrible parenting. On the way to the zoo four days ago, a radio message talked about “giving what they whiner wants gives them the idea that they’ll get their way by crying and demanding”. So, to sum up what most of you have already guessed and come to conclusion long ago about, Disney is rewarding immature crybabies who HATE and hate and hate and hate and hate and hate and… Instead of doing a film for the general Star Wars audience, or trying to bring both trilogies together (Force Awakens would be cool if along with Han and Leia, had Maul, Binks, and whoever return along with clones of dead prequel characters and the force ghosts of Anakin and Obi-Wan). And not to be the seeker of hypocrisy, but it is blatant that Disney rewards these hateboys of a series they bought while friendly petitions for bringing back Tron Uprising or putting The Black Cauldron on Blu-Ray (franchises they made themselves) are ignored, even with their own extremists.

  16. jarjarbacktattooguy Says:

    Good interview, just read it…thanks Lazy!

    I think Lucas and his people did downplay the use of mo-cap in the press in 1999. They gave you the impression Ahmed Best was just being used as a live action reference. In feature animation, the artists would use a process called rotoscoping, where an actor would be filmed and the artists would trace their movements. I guess they thought the primitive 1999 era moviegoers mind could not comprehend motion capture tech. Or maybe they just didn’t want to give Best all the credit he deserved.

    Best shows us he was the perfect person for this by sharing his knowledge of Buster Keaton and the like.

    He’s on the money about crtics wanting to take Star Wars down. Like invading barbarians, they must destroy the accomplishments of the previous generation and prop up the the new blood’s (darker and grittier) fantasy films, like LOTR.

    And I’d love to see Best lay some whoop ass on one of these skinny, hateboy geeks! Jar Jar’s a New Yorker, he will bust you up!

  17. ladylavinia1932 Says:

    [“Maybe that’s what the haters really dislike about these characters. They want to see the dashing, beautiful people on the screen, but they don’t want to see themselves.”]

    Perhaps that’s why a good number of fans bash the PT. Someone once said that the Original Trilogy revealed what we would like to be and that the Prequel Trilogy revealed what we might really be like. Hmmm.

  18. Jim Raynor Says:

    I’ve said this before, but I’ll bring it up again since it pertains to the topic:

    As “wrong” and overly “scientific” as the Midichlorians may sound, the idea of Force sensitivity as an inheritable trait goes all the way back to the Original Trilogy.

    Obi-Wan stayed on Tattooine to watch over Luke, and he targeted Luke for training as soon as he received his call to action. He did NOT try to find any other allies to train during the nearly two decades it took for Luke to grow up. Vader said that “The Force is strong with this one,” while chasing Luke during the Battle of Yavin. It was later stated that the Emperor knew that Vader’s children would be very strong with the Force, and it was implied that they would go after Leia if Luke didn’t work out.

    The Expanded Universe, which many OT-only fans don’t complain about nearly as much, went even further with cloned Jedi stepping out of their test tubes with fully developed Force powers.

    So Midichlorians are complete heresy, but DNA isn’t?

    Episode I never even said that the Force is a mere genetic trait, nor did it say that it originated from the Midichlorians.

    Instead, the Midichlorians helped people COMMUNICATE with the Force. As living organisms in their own right, the Midichlorians themselves would be subject to the power and influence of the Force. The Force clearly existed outside of individual beings, and it was said to have a will of its own.

    Like narrow minded religious fanatics, the extreme OT-only Star Wars fandom is quick to anger over perceived blasphemy. It lacks the ability to take an objective look at things, and it can’t arrive at interpretations that accomodate the entire body of known information.

    Yes, the very prequels that the hateboys deride for “demystifying” the Force basically said that the Force was a mystical, ethereal being.

    • Stefan Kraft Says:

      “It was the will of the Force to find him.”
      I have once found the interpretation that the PT even adds to the mysticism because the characters suddenly talk about such things. Don’t worry, ANH (implicitly) states clear enough that the Force is more than a simple energy field like a magnetic field that some gifted individuals can control. However, if you look at it the wrong way, you may get this impression… in TESB, Yoda talks a lot about the mystic aspects of the Force. But it is only in the PT that we learn about the “will of the Force,” not to forget the Living and (implicitly) the Unifying Force, if I am not mistaken. The PT certainly does not want to demistify the Force, on the contrary.

      • jarjarbacktattooguy Says:

        I think Lucas was listening to the Art Bell (Coast to Coast AM) radio show a lot when writing Episode I.

        Guests would always try to talk about religous concepts using scientific terminology, and vice versa.

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