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If we had a nickel for every time we pursued a story with the terms Star Wars and "casting rumors," we’d have enough money to shut down this site and move to London, where J.J. Abrams continues to toil on the formula that will result in the perfect S.W. sequel… something George Lucas himself struggled with in three prequel chapters many years ago.
We are heading back into speculation territories today, following up on a report run by MarketSaw that’s addressing, and even confirming, several of the casting rumors we heard in the run up to Episode VII. Are they true? We lack studio confirmation (of course), but with Abrams ready to lens this sequel in May, we can assure that actors will have to be announced very soon, and we keep hearing the same names over and over.
Quoting a source close to the production, the site claims that Benedict Cumberbatch AND Gary Oldman "are both involved" in the rewritten Episode VII script. "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," the source states, but goes on record to say that both actors will join original stars Ian McDiarmid, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Billy Dee Williams, Anthony Daniels and Warwick Davis. Don’t forget R2-D2, also confirmed.
The MarketSaw report goes so far as to claim that "changes are being taken to bring the original cast to the forefront of the story," but that the future story line "ultimately [is] about twins, and which will take a path towards darkness and which will follow in their fathers footsteps."
That’s a crystal clear reference to the Solo twins, Jacen and Jaina Solo – offspring of Han Solo and Princess Leia. Anyone who has read Star Wars fiction following the original trilogy knows that Jaina, the sister, heads toward the good side of the Force, while Jacen succumbs to the Dark Side, becoming Darth Caedus. It long has been rumored that this new trilogy would tell the popular story of the Solo children (including Anakin Solo, the couple’s youngest son who has a tragic, compelling story arc). With the addition of screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan, it became evident that Abrams needed someone who could punch up the original characters of Han, Luke and Leia. But after Episode VII, it still seems like the story of Jacen and Jaina is this franchise’s destiny. Maybe Jesse Plemons landed the role of Jacen a while ago.
Or this could all be horseshit, another rumor chased down a dark alley that amounts to nothing of note. Truthfully, when you start to hear the same items from different sources, you tend to believe the validity of hat is being said. Cumberbatch and Oldman are mentioned numerous times when it comes to Episode VII. The saga of the Solo family makes complete sense as a narrative Abrams (and future directors) could easily follow. Is it all true? We hope so, and we hope someone from LucasFilm confirms it before the movie actually starts to film.