Jonathan Aris (Dr. Anderson on Sherlock) is rumored to play a senator in the upcoming Star Wars Anthology film. Unlike so many other rumors associated with Star Wars films, this one has decent roots. BBC noticed Aris’s Spotlight page, an official source for CVs, included a role in Rogue One at the top of his credits. The listing has since been deleted–which doesn’t look suspicious at all–but BBC grabbed a screencap:
According to the listing, Aris is playing Senator Jebel. The character name is new. As far as I can tell, Jebel isn’t part of any existing stories in Legends (the moniker given to stories in novels and comics from the Expanded Universe in the pre-everything is canon days). Given the timeline of Rogue One, having at least one senator around makes total sense. The film takes place before the events of A New Hope. The Imperial Senate hasn’t been dissolved, and the Rebellion is still in early stages.
The story of Rogue One follows a group of resistance fighters as they attempt to steal the plans for the Death Star, and a senator could obviously play into that plot in a number of ways–big and small. I could speculate endlessly, but without any other information, I can’t point the speculation into a specific direction. Filming for Rogue One is set to begin this week so maybe we’ll get more confirmed casting news soon. Felicity Jones is the only star confirmed so far. Forest Whitaker, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, and Riz Ahmed are rumored to be involved.
Would you like to see Aris in Rogue One? Any guesses about whether Senator Jebel is an ally? Sound off in the comments.