Justin Theroux confirms his 'Last Jedi' romance with Maz Kanata: 'She's a bobcat'

Ethan Alter
Senior Writer, Yahoo Entertainment
Maz Kanata in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. (Photo: Disney)

With The Last Jedi, the middle chapter in the third (and maybe final?) Skywalker-centric Star Wars trilogy, writer-director Rian Johnson enlivened the canon of George Lucas’s far, far away galaxy with exciting new story points and bits of mythology. Whether it was Luke summoning the full extent of his Jedi powers to project his cleaned-up visage from Ahch-To to Crait or Rey discovering that her mystery-shrouded origins aren’t all that special, The Last Jedi expertly sets the stage for returning director J.J. Abrams to deliver a rousing trilogy-capper.

One story thread we’re particularly excited to see woven into future installments is the red-hot romance between Maz Kanata (played by Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o through the magic of motion-capture) and the effortlessly suave Master Codebreaker (Justin Theroux). In their most desperate hour, Poe (Oscar Isaac), Finn (John Boyega), and Rose (Kelly Marie Tran) contact Maz hoping she can assist in a last-ditch mission to help the surviving Resistance fighters escape the seemingly unstoppable First Order fleet. She’s otherwise occupied with a “union dispute,” but strongly recommends they travel to the upper-crust planet of Canto Bight and enlist the services of the Master Codebreaker. She also makes it clear that their relationship is more — much more — than professional.

We’re not alone in wanting the backstory on Kanata and the Codebreaker. Since the movie hit theaters last December, Star Wars fans have expressed their pleasure about this power couple online and on Twitter:

So when Yahoo Entertainment sat down with Theroux recently to discuss his new film Mute, which hits Netflix on Feb. 23, we couldn’t resist asking him to comment on his alter ego’s great galactic romance. “I can definitely confirm it,” he says, chuckling. “That happened — she’s a bobcat!” As to whether we’ll see them together in an upcoming Star Wars movie, the actor instead pitches a cameo in a future franchise class photo akin to the 10th anniversary snapshot recently released by Marvel Studios. “The Codebreaker will show up, in an embrace with Maz Kanata.”

Justin Theroux and Jennifer Aniston attend the premiere of The Leftovers in 2017. (Photo: Dee Cercone/Everett Collection)

While he heartily endorses the dreams of Codebreaker-Kanata shippers, Theroux put a damper on a popular online theory that his appearance in The Last Jedi was a shout-out to his beloved HBO series, The Leftovers. In the show’s third and final season, Theroux’s character, Kevin Garvey — one of the traumatized left behind on an Earth where some 140 million people have mysteriously up and vanished — visits other realms and assumes other identities. “I hadn’t heard that theory before, but it’s a good one,” he says. “Kevin is now a master codebreaker! We’ll call Damon [Lindelof, who oversaw The Leftovers] and see if he wants to launch that as a spinoff.”

Even if he never appears in the Star Wars universe again, Theroux makes it clear he’ll always treasure what he superlatively describes as “one of those wonderful, pinch yourself, oh-my-God-I-remember-skipping-school-to-see-Return-of-the-Jedi moments.” Sadly, his only record of his time on the lavish Canto Bight sets will have to remain the film itself since security concerns barred him from snapping personal photos in his Codebreaker getup. “I didn’t know how addicted I was to my telephone until I was on that set! I wanted to take pictures so badly — not for publication, just to remember it. The sets and costumes were so incredible. But I remember thinking, ‘I can’t do that, because they’ll chop your hands off if you bring a phone anywhere near that set.’”

Watch the trailer for Theroux’s next film, Mute:

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