While the author of this article has already seen the The Force Awakens, we will make sure there are no spoilers here. Nothing included here isn’t included in the press materials and trailers. However, if you’re on a true “media blackout” you might want to skip this until you’ve seen the film.
You are probably already aware that the new primary villain for Star Wars: The Force Awakens is a dark side force user by the name of Kylo Ren.
However, you might not know that the actor playing Kylo Ren, Adam Driver, had a very different job a few years ago. Shortly after the September 11th terror attacks, Driver enlisted in the Marine Corps.
Driver was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 1st Marine as an 81mm mortarman in Camp Pendleton, California.
However, Driver never it to the Middle East with the rest of his fellow Marines. Two years into his enlistment, he broke his sternum during a mountain biking accident. According to an interview with GQ:
Driver never made it to war. Two years in, he broke his sternum on a cheapo mountain bike and soon after was medically discharged, an outcome that still “fuckin’ kills me,” he says. “To not get to go with that group of people I had been training with was…painful.”
Driver became a security guard while he trained to be an actor. Driver said he used his military background to adopt a military style training regiment for physical fitness and his acting that allowed him to ultimately get accepted to Juilliard.