Star Wars director Rian Johnson has hit back at the troll "manbabies" who have forced actress Kelly Marie Tran to quit Instagram after months of racist and sexist abuse over her role in The Last Jedi.
The Vietnamese-American star - who became the first woman of colour to play a leading part in the iconic series - has deleted all of her posts on the photo-sharing social network.
She has been targeted by what Johnson described as "unhealthy people" who took issue with her performance as Resistance fighter Rose Tico in the eighth instalment of the fantasy saga, which was released in December.
Addressing the backlash on Twitter, Johnson said: "What we talk about when we talk about manbabies."
He added: "On social media a few unhealthy people can cast a big shadow on the wall, but over the past 4 years I've met lots of real fellow SW fans. We like & dislike stuff but we do it with humor, love & respect.
"We're the VAST majority, we're having fun & doing just fine."
What we talk about when we talk about manbabies— Rian Johnson (@rianjohnson) June 5, 2018
On social media a few unhealthy people can cast a big shadow on the wall, but over the past 4 years I’ve met lots of real fellow SW fans. We like & dislike stuff but we do it with humor, love & respect. We’re the VAST majority, we’re having fun & doing just fine. https://t.co/yhcShg5vdJ— Rian Johnson (@rianjohnson) June 5, 2018
His response was backed by Luke Skywalker actor Mark Hamill: "Same here, but over the past 40 years for me."
The Last Jedi was a hit with critics when it hit cinemas and grossed more than $1.3bn at the worldwide box office, but some fans have dedicated much of their time since then to abuse its director, cast and producer Kathleen Kennedy.
Many of the replies to Johnson's latest comments continued in that vein, with accusations that he had "killed Star Wars" and caused the latest instalment - a Han Solo spin-off - to flop at the box office.
Lead actress Daisy Ridley has also left Instagram because of sexist comments about her role in The Last Jedi - and earlier this year one fan released an edited version of the film without any female characters.
It was described as "the chauvinist cut" by its anonymous creator, who said he had removed "Girl Powah and other silly stuff" - including "superpowered Rey" (Ridley's character) and "bomber heroism by china girl" (a reference to Tran's role).
Kennedy - who was put in charge of the franchise after George Lucas sold his company to Disney - has previously said she was keen to introduce more women to the series.
It was revealed in a video last year that across a total run-time of 386 minutes, the original Star Wars trilogy featured just over one minute of dialogue spoken by a woman other than Carrie Fisher's Princess Leia.
Ridley and Tran are due to return for Star Wars: Episode IX, which is due for release on 20 December 2019.
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