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It seems that with each tidbit of info regarding the upcoming Star Wars: Episode VII, the movie itself starts to seem more and more real. Since the newest trilogy (featuring Episodes 7-9) was announced back in 2012, things have been kept heavily under wraps, with very little information being release about the movie.
J.J. Abrams is set to direct Episode VII, set to hit theaters in December 2015, over a decade after the last installment in the long-running sci-fi franchise hit theaters back in 2005 (Episode III: Revenge of the Sith). Abrams was most recently acclaimed for revamping the Star Trek franchise with two critically and commercially successful outings. The outcome of his work has given a lot of fans hope in the director, who found a great way to blend the classic elements with a modern twist, without dwelling too far from the feel of the original Trek films.
Aside from that, however, the only character announced to return in Episode VII was iconic android R2-D2, though even then actor Kenny Baker-who played R2 in all six previous films- wasn’t even announced as to whether he’d return to man the droid suit or not. It was recently revealed by Disney CEO Bob Iger that Episode VII will take place 30 years after the events of Return of the Jedi, which makes sense considering the timeline is almost in real-time with that time jump from 1983-2015.
Iger also announced that the cast of the film will feature both new and “familiar” faces, which many have speculated will include the some of the original trilogy’s cast, such as Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford & Carrie Fisher. The return of the trio has been heavily rumored, even strongly teased by Fisher herself. Mark Hamill also appears to be getting in shape lately, according to a picture from “Frosty” from Collider. With the film already in the first stages of production, it is inevitable that casting announcements will be coming very soon.
And now, it seems another iconic character will be indeed be returning for the next installment. THR reports that actor Peter Mayhew, known for portraying the lovable Wookiee named Chewbacca, will dawn the costume once again in Episode VII. The 7’2″ actor last appeared as Chewie in 2005’s Episode III, and will make a return at age 70.
Although there was some speculation that Mayhew might end up being replaced for the role, after undergoing double-knee surgery. However, he went on record to say “I intend on pursuing the role of Chewbacca for Episode VII”. Soon after, it was noticed that Mayhew would be canceling his appearance at 2014 Comicpalooza Con, which will be taking place around the time the film is set to film, adding to the rumors of his return.
Though no official announcements regarding the films’ cast have been made, expect them to come sooner than later, considering the film’s production is already underway. What do you guys think? There should be very few negative responses to this, in my opinion!
Star Wars: Episode VII is set to hit theaters on December 18th, 2015, directed by J.J. Abrams.
Written by Josh Sazin on 4/7/14, with a link to THR.