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Episode VII Rumors: More Names For The Casting Process And A Reason For Arndt's Departure
Posted by Eric on January 11, 2014 at 10:28 PM CST |
Hot on the heels of the report that Jesse Plemons is in the running for a big part in Star Wars Episode VII, sources tell The Hollywood Reporter that actors Michael Fassbender (Inglourious Basterds, X-Men: First Class), Adam Driver (Girls), and Hugo Weaving (The Matrix, Lord of the Rings) are also being considered for parts. Weaving's name came up in association with an "Imperial commander" part, while the other two were not identified with specific roles.

THR also says that screenwriter Michael Arndt left the project due to "a difference in opinion of which characters to emphasize":
Arndt is said to have focused on the offspring of Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher), with the original trilogy heroes taking on supporting roles. Abrams, however, wanted Episode VII to focus on the classic trio of characters, so audiences could have one more chance to enjoy them before a fitting send-off. The new characters, the offspring, will now be in supporting roles, according to these sources, and take center stage in Episode VIII and IX. Some characters have disappeared from the Arndt script and new ones are being drafted.
If true, this is very interesting. It raises the question of what exactly Abrams wants to do with the "Big Three" in Episode VII that necessitates expanding their role and downplaying the next generation. And given that Abrams has not been officially attached to either Episode VIII or IX, one wonders why he wants to delay the focus on the Solo and Skywalker children until those films.

Two other interesting tidbits from the report:
  • George Lucas participated in the debate over the script changes but "acquiesced" to Abrams and Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy.
  • The producers are "searching for a 20-something female actress who is either of mixed race or black," supposedly to play either the daughter or granddaughter of Obi-Wan Kenobi. How's that for unexpected?
You can read more of The Hollywood Reporter's story on the Episode VII pre-production process right here.

UPDATE: Tracy from Club Jade has an interesting theory about that "Obi-Wan's offspring" rumor, and given the increasing importance of the Lucasfilm Story Group and its synergistic work, it's not a bad guess:


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