The process of putting the cast together for Star Wars: The Force Awakens took a very long time. We here at Cinema Blend spent months and months tracking various rumors and reports, regularly hearing about different actors being up for key roles in the blockbuster sequel. What you may not realize, however, is that some performers were kept on the hook for the majority of that period, left waiting to hear whether or not they got the gig. John Boyega was one of these performers, and it may surprise you to learn that he was waiting for the phone call for a grand total of seven months.
I recently had the pleasure of sitting down for an on-camera interview with the young actor during the Los Angeles press day for the film, and part of our conversation was dedicated to talking about the long time it took for him to go from auditioning to landing the role. I had asked him what his favorite and least favorite part of the entire Star Wars process was, and he didn’t hesitate in identifying the nerve-wracking process that came while waiting for word from J.J. Abrams and company. Said Boyega,
My least favorite was definitely not knowing whether or not I would have booked the part while auditioning. It’s like, ‘Man, am I going to get it? Am I not?’… Seven months. So I aged trying to find out. But it’s been good so far.
You can watch John Boyega’s animated response in the video below:
What’s honestly funny about this news is that the media had absolutely no idea that Boyega was in talks for Star Wars: The Force Awakens for that long. The first reports about the Attack The Block star being considered for a lead role in the new Star Wars movie came on March 12, 2014, and it was just a few weeks later on April 29, 2014 that the official cast of the blockbuster was revealed. To us it seemed like Boyega just had to wait about a month and a half before locking down his part, but it was actually oh so much longer than that.
Long and painful as the process must have been, the great news is that it all worked out for the best. As I wrote in my spoiler-free review, John Boyega is absolutely one of the best parts of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and his character is both individually compelling and has a wonderful rapport with Daisy Ridley’s Rey. You’ll soon find this out for yourself, as the movie will be in theaters this Friday, December 18th.