When I saw The Last Jedi for the first time, one of my favourite scenes came right at the end of the movie. In a coda to the main storyline, we see one of the Canto Bight children hearing the story of Luke’s final stand against The First Order. Chased outside, the young boy returns to his chores and uses The Force to pick up his broom. Holding it like a Lightsaber, and looking to the sky. Through Luke, hope has returned to the galaxy. Like most people watching this scene, in my head I dubbed him The Broom Boy
His name is known now, but we have not been told if Temiri Blagg will return in the next movie or if he is merely a symbol of the fire lit by Rose, Finn, Poe, Leia and Luke. The young actor, Temirlan Blaev who portrayed this symbolic character has kindly agreed to answer a few questions about his experience filming The Last Jedi.
Getting to know you, apart from Football, do you have any other hobbies or interests like playing an instrument, dancing, martial arts?
I enjoy travelling, like to take pictures of interesting places. I also like playing chess and games on PlayStation. My favourite one at the moment is Fortnite.
Are you interested in pursuing an acting career, and if so, are you taking classes or being tutored to prepare for future roles?
Yes, I am interested to continue my acting career, as I really enjoy acting. I take drama classes for over 2 years. I enjoy these classes, we have lots of fun there.
Whose idea was it to audition for The Last Jedi, and were you a Star Wars fan before taking the role?
My mum saw a casting call and offered me to have a go. I have never done this before and it was interesting for me to try. We knew it was a casting call for a major film, but I didn’t know it was a casting for Star Wars!
I have always been a big Star Wars fan. I watched all episodes, knew all characters and had lots of Star Wars toys and figurines which I loved to play with. Star Wars was my favourite film and Obi-Wan Kenobi was my favourite character.
Can you tell me about your experience in the audition and casting process. Was it welcoming and one to one, or were you in a large group of actors competing?
When we came to casting there was a queue of boys with their parents. It was a one to one audition. I was given a script to read and act. It was a very emotional scene from E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and I think I did very well, as I got the role. We knew I got the role after few months since the audition. It was a very happy day for me.
What was it like to be part of the filming of The Last Jedi?
To be in The Last Jedi was absolutely amazing. It was a great experience for me and I could not believe I got this role! I will remember that time for all my life.
Everything was just great: people, decorations, costumes, aliens. The space horse Fathier was just amazing, it had big sad eyes and looked so real! The monster from my scene also looked very real and scary. I enjoyed every minute being on set.
I met many great people, I met Daisy Ridley, Kelly Marie Tran and John Boyega. It was really enjoyable working with them as they all were really nice to me. Kelly was always fun, she smiles and laughs a lot. John helped me with my scene. He and Kelly supported me because it was my first acting experience and I was pretty nervous. John helped me to concentrate and shared some acting tips with me.
It was almost unbelievable to meet all my favourite characters from the movie. I was playing with Rey and Finn action figurines and I could not believe my eyes when I met them in the flesh. I knew that the actor’s name is John Boyega, but I was so excited and when I saw him I said “Hello Finn!” John, Daisy and Kelly signed a book for me.
Do you have any stories or thoughts from your time on set, or from meeting other members of the cast or Rian Johnson?
I enjoyed working with Rian Johnson very much. He is a great film Director, and I will always be grateful that he gave me a chance and chose me for this role.
Rian is very hardworking and always stays positive. He supported me and other actors a lot and was very passionate about the film.
I remember my last day on set, I was very concentrated and could not relax. When Rian said: “Cut!” I still kept standing holding my broom and was very serious. Everyone gave me a big applause and Rian said: Temi, smile, you are in Star Wars! After that I finally relaxed and smiled.
Can you tell me how Lucasfilm explained the role to you? Did they have a particular significance in mind, a particular message the character represents to the story, or the Star Wars universe?
Rian has explained me the script and what I needed to do. I didn’t know if the boy is a significant character but from my role I could guess Temiri Blagg is a very brave boy, who loves and protects Fathiers. He is curious and smart, ready to help people in a difficult situation. I was very proud of my role. I have so much in common with my character, I am also very curious, brave and love animals.
Were you allowed to take anything home with you from the set? For example the ring or the broom?
Unfortunately not. I could not keep anything, but if I could, I would love to keep the ring and the costume.
If you were asked to come back to a future Star Wars TV show or movie, would you be interested in returning to the role of Temiri Blagg ‘The Broom Boy’.
No doubts Yes! I would love to come back to a galaxy far far away!
What does Star Wars mean to you. What do you think is the message Star Wars wants us to learn?
I think the main message is never give up and always have hope for the better future. Hope that good will fight the evil.
I remember and really like what Carrie Fisher said about Star Wars in Behind the scenes reel: “It’s about family and that is what is so powerful about it.”