'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' director Rian Johnson felt like he was making an ''indie movie with lightsabers'' at times.

The 43-year-old filmmaker has opened up about what it was like on the set of the latest instalment of the science fiction franchise and says he felt like he was ''in a safe space''.

He said: ''Other people's film sets are like other people's marriages. If you're on the outside looking in and think you know what's going on, you're probably wrong. Speaking for myself, I wasn't in any of those processes. I know the process I was in and I know my experience was the exact opposite of that characterisation. I was protected and felt like creatively I was in a safe space. There were times during the making of this movie where I'd say, 'God, it feels like we're making Looper or Brick even'. It would feel like we were making an indie movie, just with lightsabers.''

And Johnson was ''absolutely terrified'' when Mark Hamill - who plays Luke Skywalker - spoke out about how he disagreed with the way his character was portrayed in the new movie.

He told Wired magazine: ''It was absolutely terrifying! It didn't feel good. But it ended up being healthy because I had to put my ego aside and step back. I had to think, 'OK, this character has been part of Mark's identity in many complicated ways for the past 40 years.'

''The notion that some young asshole is going to come along, drop a script in his lap and say, 'And now it's this' and he would say, 'Yep, makes perfect sense to me, let's do it!' is kind of fanciful. It was a process.''