Another day, another Star Wars: Episode VII casting rumor (it’s gonna be like this for the next couple months, kids, get used to it). This one comes from MarketSaw, a site you might have heard of before, if only because they were the first to ever report that Lucasfilm was actively working on a sequel trilogy way back in 2009, three years before any official announcement. According to their sources, the casting breakdown right now goes something like this:
“Ian McDiarmid, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher,, Mark Hamill, Billy Dee Williams, Anthony Daniels, Warwick Davis, Benedict Cumberbatch and Gary Oldman. I believe Cumberbatch and Oldman were pursued for the same role, but I don’t know how that will work out with the script changes, but I’m told they are both involved.”
What, no Kenny Baker?? Ok, so the big bomb dropped here, if this rumor is true, is that BOTH Cumberbatch and Oldman are purportedly going to be in Episode VII. Why have one British actor play an evil Imperial officer when two are better? (I mean, that’s probably what they’re going to play, right?) If true, this means Cumberbatch will give Hugo Weaving a run for his money as the go-to actor across multiple nerd franchises (Weaving, of course, playing key parts in The Matrix, The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, Transformers and the Marvel Cinematic Universe). If Cumberbatch lands this gig, he won’t be far behind Weaving, having starred in Star Trek Into Darkness, The Hobbit, and now, possibly, Star Wars. If he just shows up in either the Marvel or DC movie universes, then Cumberbatch and Weaving are tied. If Gary Oldman is also in this, that would make Episode VII a reunion, as both he and Cumberbatch both starred together in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.
Also in that batch of casting rumors is the suggestion that Ian McDiarmid will indeed be back as Emperor Palpatine. He’s the key villain of the entire saga, so this makes sense. Mr. McDiarmid is the very best thing about both Return of the Jedi and Revenge of the Sith, so the more of him, the better. The other cast we all know about (well, unofficially anyway), except this is the first I’ve ever head that Warwick Davis is back. While he could be playing another role, could Wicket the Ewok actually come back? Did the Rebels pull an Angelina Jolie and adopt a native child from Endor? Although the idea of an older, wiser Wicket as gunner on the Millennium Falcon or something is kind of adorable.
In terms of story details, this is what the original report had to say:
“Ultimately it’s about twins, and which will take a path towards darkness and which will follow in their fathers footsteps, or at least that is what it used to be, that may come later as I think changes are being undertaken to bring the original cast into the forefront of the story, leading to ramifications that lead up to the next generation of Skywalkers.”
So unlike the Expanded Universe, where the Jedi twins were Han and Leia’s kids, this suggests that Luke will have twin children to carry on the Skywalker name. Does this mean that Han and Leia didn’t get married or have children? Guess we’ll have to wait and see.
And finally, also in the report was this tidbit about the future of the Indiana Jones saga:
“Regarding Harrison Ford, two more Indiana Jones features are in the negotiation stages as per Ford’s contract clause on Star Wars”
Really?? While I could see Harrison playing an elder, General Solo in charge of the Alliance Fleet or something, I’m really having a hard time picturing seventy-something Harrison Ford rummaging through the ruins, especially after Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. If Disney is smart, they’ll reboot Indiana Jones and show us the unseen adventures of Indy back in his World War II heyday (just please don’t remake Raiders of the Lost Ark. Ever.)
With shooting scheduled to being in just a couple of months, we hope we’ll be getting real confirmations here pretty soon.