‘It doesn’t surprise me’: ‘The Acolyte’ star Amandla Stenberg responds to ‘Star Wars’ fans’ negative critiques SuperNayr

One day after The Acolyte premiered on Disney Plus — and after months of the show receiving negative attention from so-called Star Wars purists who hadn’t yet seen it — the series’ star responded to the negative criticism.

Amandla Stenberg, who both stars and co-stars in The Acolyte, as she plays the dual roles of twin sisters, was the most recent focus of the portion of the Star Wars fanbase who all but condemn the saga for now being “too woke.”

Personally, I’m quite the huge Star Wars fan and have written countless articles through the years about the saga but I’m always surprised with the “This isn’t Star Wars” crowd who seem to be more committed to being negative than being receptive. Last night, I watched the two-episode premiere of the series and came away impressed with the excellent presentation of the story, and I’m genuinely excited to see the rest.

Stenberg, who was outstanding in the premiere, appeared on GMA3 to discuss it. She noted that her favorite thing about being in the show is that her 9-year old nephew loves it. He is her biggest fan and, if you watch the series, you’ll likely join him in his fandom.

When discussing how actors in Star Wars are generally beloved, or at least used to be, Eva Pilgrim hesitated somewhat while asking, “Were you surprised by the people and all of the stuff that has come your direction?”

The question seemed carefully worded, leaving it up to interpretation as to whether “all the stuff” referred to the unnecessary negativity that Stenberg has personally received, but in any case, she seemed unfazed. Stenberg even initially expressed her gratitude, saying “I’m still surprised that I am here in this moment talking about being a part of Star Wars.”

She then addressed the diverse fan reactions perfectly. “The fans and the response,” she answered, “it doesn’t surprise me because I feel like Star Wars is so ubiquitous.”

Stenberg went on to add that she is aware of Star Wars’ legacy and impact, and thus it’s somewhat to be expected.

She also praised the online resource of Wookieepedia, a Star Wars-only wiki, and explained that she signed on to The Acolyte three years ago and implied that she used Wookiepedia often during that time to learn more about the saga.

Stenberg’s family celebrated the premiere by, as she explained, having a “watch party that they Facetimed me into, and they were having a cookout, and I wished that I was there.”

Perhaps Amandla Stenberg will be the one that bridges the gap between Star Wars fans who are fed up with the franchise, and Star Wars fans who love its new direction. She responds with understanding and maturity and keeps things light, as if suggesting that you can’t please everyone, but you can still do the best you possibly can, without negatively responding to the criticism.

Am I saying that she is the Chosen One? Not really, because there is no such prophecy outside of the saga, but I do believe Stenberg will prove important to the future of Star Wars, and will bring more people on board who will welcome what’s to come.

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