Star Wars: The Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams said this week he wants to see the Star Wars franchise more accurately reflect “the way the world looks,” especially in regards to being more inclusive of gay characters.
“When I talk about inclusivity, it’s not excluding gay characters, it’s about inclusivity, so of course,” Abrams told reporters at the US-Ireland Alliance Oscar Wilde Awards, according to PEOPLE magazine.
Abrams’ lone Star Wars film introduced female and black leads in Daisy Ridley and John Boyega. The director previously told Entertainment Weekly he “just knew that this movie needed to look the way the world looks.”
While Star Wars: Episode VIII and Episode IX will be directed by Rian Johnson and Colin Trevorrow, respectively, Abrams is attached to both projects as an executive producer and hopes to see Star Wars’ first openly-gay character in the near future.
“To me the fun of Star Wars is exploring the possibilities, so it seems insanely narrow-minded to say that there wouldn’t be a homosexual character in that world,” he said at the Oscar Wilde Awards.
Abrams has been vocal about industry diversity in recent months.
Regarding the #OscarsSoWhite controversy, he told The Daily Beast in January, “I think we all have a hell of a lot to do, and I think it is insane to me that we still have to have a conversation about inclusivity.”
It’s shameful,” he added. “We all need to do better to represent this world. It’s something that is important to me.”