When J.J. Abrams was working on Force Awakens, Dominic Monaghan approached his friend with interest, and J.J. Abrams said he would keep him in mind. For Force Awakens however, he was looking for newcomers, which Abrams found in Daisy Ridley and John Boyega. For The Last Jedi, Rian Johnson took the reins, making it clear to Monaghan that he wouldn’t be in the second one either. However, with Abrams returning for Episode IX, this was his chance. Monaghan even took a break from working for a while in hopes of getting the call and needing to be available, thanks to some playful hints from the director. It all thankfully paid off when Disney reached out to him and he got his hands on the script.