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The Boogeyman's Original Script Featured An Iconic Nod To Star Wars

"The Boogeyman," the latest film based on a Stephen King spine-chilling tale, constructs its story of terror around dark, ravenous forces lurking in the shadows. The film pushes the limits of its PG-13 rating, and the results are frequently unsettling. 

The film tells the tale of imperiled sisters trying to conquer a familial threat. To keep the evil "Boogeyman" at bay, Sadie (Sophie Thatcher) and her younger sister Sawyer (Vivien Lyra Blair) utilize light in their defense. In the original script, Sawyer even had a "Star Wars" inspired gadget that she employed to ward off the sinister creature.

Director Rob Savage recently told Collider that 11-year-old Blair (who played an adolescent version of Princess Leia in the Disney+ series "Obi-Wan Kenobi") had a fitting toy in the film's original draft. As the film currently stands, when the menacing presence comes near, Sawyer uses a moon orb lamp to protect herself; in the original script, that was to be a lightsaber. 

"Originally, the script was written with Sawyer's character having a knock-off lightsaber that she would hug in bed," the director explains. "[The lightsaber] would then fritz out during the scene that then became the moon ball scene. Our office was filled with different lightsaber toys, because we had to find the perfect lightsaber. So we were constantly having frustrated lightsaber battles during prep."

Ultimately, Disney (who owns both "Star Wars" and "Boogeyman" distributor 20th Century Fox) didn't think the cross-promotional, Spielberg/Lucas-esque homage was a good idea, so the object of Sawyer's defense was swapped. 

Savage had to replace the lightsaber to meet Disney's demands

There are multiple night lights in Sawyer's room, used to keep her safe during some tense "Boogeyman" sequences. But when she is forced to leave her luminous comfort zone, she needs a portable source of light to defend herself. The rolling sphere seen in "The Boogeyman" is a clever way to heighten the suspense, as viewers remain shrouded in the threatening darkness. But it wasn't the original idea. 

"I'd completely forgotten that we cast young Princess Leia," Savage admitted. "And Disney didn't really like the idea of young Princess Leia having a broken lightsaber that was fritz[ing] out. It looked like a piece of s**t. So they said, no, we can't do that and we had to come up with something else very quickly."

The lightsaber might have created a clever connection in the eyes of some — but for Disney, there wasn't much to be gained. As the old proverb goes, necessity is the mother of invention. For "Boogeyman," this necessity to find a quick alternative yielded the moon light, which in many ways creates its own unsettling effect. If there's a sequel, perhaps the lightsaber could make a comeback.