“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” helmer says his high school teacher, Rose Gilbert, was the inspiration behind one of the characters in the space film.
The 49-year-old filmmaker revealed that Maz’s character was based on his Pacific Palisades English teacher, said The Hollywood Reporter.
“Yes, the character of Maz was originally based on the great Rose Gilbert. We really wanted the story to feel authentic, despite being a wild fantasy. I mentioned Rose in an early story meeting as a sort of timeless, wise figure that I’d actually known in my life,” Abrams said.
“While we experimented with many looks and styles before settling on the character’s final design, Rose was always at the center of the inspiration of Maz. Rick and I had hoped to contact Rose and show her what we were doing, but she sadly passed away while we were in the prep of the film,” he added.