Star Wars: Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill Reunite!
Original Star Wars actors Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill will feature in Star Wars: Episode VII, the latest film in the franchise. Other actors confirmed are Andy Serkis and Max von Sydow, alongside relative newcomers John Boyega and Daisy Ridley, both of whom are British. Episode VII will start shooting at Pinewood Studios, near London, in May.
Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew and Kenny Baker will also return as C-3PO, Chewbacca and R2-D2 respectively.
Director JJ Abrams said: “We are so excited to finally share the cast of Star Wars: Episode VII. It is both thrilling and surreal to watch the beloved original cast and these brilliant new performers come together to bring this world to life, once again.
“We start shooting in a couple of weeks, and everyone is doing their best to make the fans proud.”
A picture of the new cast, with R2-D2 in a wooden crate, was posted on the official Star Wars site on Tuesday.
The new recruits include:
Domhnall Gleeson, son of Irish actor Brendan Gleeson, his film credits include About Time, Never Let Me Go and a recurring role as Bill Weasley in the Harry Potter films.
Daisy Ridley, a British actress, whose TV career has included bit parts in Casualty, Mr Selfridge and Silent Witness. According to her agent’s website, she was cast in the second Inbetweeners movie last year.
John Boyega, a 22-year-old British actor, who previously starred in the inner-London sci-fi Attack the Block. Along with Gleeson and Ridley, he is expected to be one of the “trio of new young leads” announced by director Abrams earlier this year.
Max von Sydow, an actor equally recognisable as Knight Antonius Block in Ingmar Bergman’s The Seventh Seal and Father Lankester Merrin in The Exorcist. The 85-year-old Swede was Oscar nominated for his 9/11 drama Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close in 2012 and has previous sci-fi experience as Ming the Merciless in 1980’s Flash Gordon.
Oscar Isaac, who played the lead role in the Coen Brothers’ Oscar-nominated drama Inside Llewyn Davis last year. He is reportedly in line for “a major role” in the franchise.
Adam Driver, best known as Adam, the frequently shirtless love interest in cult comedy drama Girls. He has been widely reported to be playing Star Wars’ main antagonist.
Andy Serkis, a master of motion capture, famously responsible for creating Gollum in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy. Outside of CGI, his acting CV includes a Bafta-nominated turn as Ian Brady in the television film Longford.
Open auditions for two roles in the new films were held in the UK and Ireland last November. They were for a “street smart and strong” orphaned girl in her late teens and a “smart capable” man in his late teens or early 20s.
It has not been confirmed whether the new cast came from the auditions, but none of them are complete unknowns and all have previous experience on screen.
No announcement has been made about the specific parts each of the cast members will play. Episode VII will be the fifth Star Wars movie to to be shot in the UK.
The original trilogy was filmed at Elstree Studios in Hertfordshire, while prequel The Phantom Menace began shooting on 26 June 1997 at Leavesden Studios in Hertfordshire.
Ford, Fisher and Hamill became household names thanks to their roles in the originals – with Ford as smuggler and rogue Han Solo, Fisher as Princess Leia and Hamill as farmhand-turned-Jedi Luke Skywalker. The new film is due in cinemas on 18 December 2015.