As character/casting descriptions became available a couple of weeks ago, speculation that there could be a female lead in the new Star Wars film sparked controversy throughout the fandom. Many male fans were concerned that a female lead would hinder the film rather than enhance it.
One argument was that Star Wars is franchise for boys not girls. Many fans argued that having a female as the lead would make Star Wars more “feminine” and less relatable to the male fan base. The argument continuing saying that because Star Wars is for men than the lead character should be a man. It seems as though these people have forgotten of the female fans that love Star Wars. In fact it was a female friend of mine that re-ignited my love for Star Wars after she requested that we have a Star Wars Marathon. I would argue that just because Star Wars is marketed towards boys, it does not mean that it can't be for girls as well.
Some fans dared to predict that the film might not attract as many of its male audience if it were to have a female lead. I think in reply to that I would simply have to remind these fans that it’s Star Wars we’re talking about. A massively popular franchise like Star Wars will still attract an impressively large audience no matter its lead. Ticket sales are not something to worry about.
Not to mention, any fan of the animated series The Clone Wars can see a successful Star Wars project with the female lead, Ahsoka. Also, as a friendly remind, just because there could be one female lead, she doesn't have to be the only one. Ahsoka was not the only lead character in the in The Clone Wars either. This brings me to my next point, which is that Star Wars will probably have a number of lead characters. In the original trilogy there was Leia, Luke, and Han Solo. In the prequels there was Anakin, Padmé, and Obi-wan. I’m sure that if there are men that cannot relate to a female character, there will be plenty of male leads that they can appreciate.
So tell me, how would having a female lead in Star Wars effect your opinion of Star Wars?