Director Christopher McQuarrie has said that he was an "innocent bystander" who was subjected to social media abuse by die-hard fans of the Star Wars franchise.
'Mission: Impossible - Fallout' director addresses origin of 'toxic fan mentality'
The 50-year-old director, who is friends with Rian Johnson, was inadvertently dragged into the toxic debate over the franchise's latest film The Last Jedi which had left many fans fuming over certain plot points.
"Look, movies are very emotional. They're extremely, extremely emotional. A movie like Star Wars or movies like Marvel where you're dealing with comic books, this is stuff that's coming from their childhood. It's the same thing as campfire stories, and in some cases, it's the very fabric of their growing up. It's something of which they're hugely protective," the director told Collider.
The Oscar-winner also said that he has prior experience of dealing with fans when he made his directorial debut with The Way of the Gun.
"Going back to The Way of the Gun, what I did in The Way of the Gun is I defied the expectations of the viewer; I subverted them right from the very beginning of the film. And I learned a valuable lesson which is that people tend to react quite extremely when you don't meet their expectations or when you don't tell them the story.
"What I did in The Way of the Gun was I was asking you to figure it out instead of telling you what I wanted you to feel. Mass audiences I'm not saying everybody, but mass audiences tend to reject that sort of thing. It's very upsetting (to them). They've come to be entertained and they find themselves doing the work, and you confront that sort of thing at your peril," McQuarrie said.
The director is currently awaiting the release of his next directorial Mission: Impossible - Fallout, which features Tom Cruise, Rebecca Ferguson, Henry Cavill, Simon Pegg and others.