Your Friendly Neighborhood Movie Blog
Greetings guys and girls of the inter webs. I have been unable to do much posting over the past week, but I am back and can’t wait back to get back into the swing of things. This week was a pretty full week for movie news, between the announcement of the Justice League movie in 2017, the death of Bob Hoskins, and- you’ll read about it here- the official casting announcement of Star Wars: Episode VII.
After about a year of speculation, rumors and hearsay, J.J. Abrams has officially revealed to us the cast of the upcoming Star Wars: Episode VII. Abrams will direct the latest installment in the massive sci-fi saga, set to hit theaters on December 18th, 2015.
The cast will indeed see both new and familiar faces as previously mentioned, bringing back a handful of actors from the original trilogy of films. Aside from the returning actors, the list of newbies lean more towards the lesser knowns (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing). We already learned a few weeks back that Peter Mayhew would be returning as Chewbacca, and that Adam Driver was in talks for a role. Though up until now, everyone has been holding their breath waiting for the rest of the cast to be announced.
Without further ado, here is the initial Star Wars: Episode VII cast:
Harrison Ford as Han Solo
Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker
Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia
Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca
Anthony Daniels as C-3PO
Kenny Baker as R2-D2
Andy Serkis (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey)
John Boyega (Attack the Block)
Adam Driver (Girls, Inside Llewyn Davis)
Oscar Isaac (Inside Llewyn Davis)
Daisy Ridley (Scrawl)
Domhnall Gleeson (About Time)
Max von Sydow (Minority Report, Shutter Island)
Along with the announcement, a photo was released of the aforementioned cast at a table read with J.J. Abrams, which can be seen below:
Surprised? Excited? Keep in mind that although this is a solid chunk of talents, there should still be more to come. In a film like Star Wars, there aren’t just 13 characters. Rumors have faded in and out regarding actors like Gary Oldman, Benedict Cumberbatch, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Lupita Nyong’o all being in talks for roles, so it’s always possible that a few more major characters could be announced further into production.
And even though bringing back a lot of the original characters is more than anyone could ask for over thirty years later, it would also be cool to see Billy Dee Williams return as Lando Calrissian, or even James Earl Jones lending his voice as Darth Vader for some sort of flashback sequence (or even Luke communicating with him through spirit) to add even more sentiment.
It is also cool to see Andy Serkis on the casting list, an incredible actor best known for his motion-capture work. He was Gollum in Lord of the Rings and the first Hobbit movie, King Kong in the 2005 film, as well as Caesar in the two most recent Planet of the Apes reboot films. It is unclear if Serkis will be acting himself, or if he will be doing mo-cap to be an alien or creature, but either way having him on board is a great achievement.
We also learned after the announcement that Harrison Ford’s Han Solo will have a significant role in the film, shutting down doubt that the original actors will only make cameo appearances (that and the fact that Abrams said he rewrote the script to fit more time for the returning stars’ characters the movie).
Many thought that the cast would be announced on May 4th (Star Wars Day for those of you who don’t know, ‘May The Fourth’), though clearly it was revealed nearly a week prior. So that leaves May 4th open to another potential announcement. Could we learn the movie’s title? Another major actor/actress? A synopsis? We’ll just have to wait and see.
Star Wars: Episode VII is set to hit theaters on December 18th, 2015, directed by J.J. Abrams.
Written by Josh Sazin on 5/3/14