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We have little idea what Star Wars Episode IX will have in store for us when it arrives in 2019, but one rumor that has been making the rounds seems to be gaining traction the closer we get to the start of production. It's been rumored that Billy Dee Williams could be returning to the galaxy far, far away in Star Wars Episode IX as Lando Calrissian, and while this is still technically a rumor, one Star Wars fan site is claiming they have it confirmed from multiple sources.
Initially, the idea that Billy Dee Williams would be returning for Star Wars Episode IX was mostly speculation. He revealed at a recent convention that he was working with a personal trainer and had changed his diet, the sort of the thing an actor might do to get in shape before an important film role. With shooting about to start on the final episode of the new Star Wars trilogy, the fact that it could be the reason Williams was getting in shape was an attractive idea.
Now, however, Bantha Tracks is reporting that not only is the idea of Billy Dee Williams return to Star Wars possible, they say it's happening. The source is anonymous, but the site claims the source confirmed the news in at least two different places.
The idea of seeing Lando return certainly makes some sense. The only major character of the original trilogy who is expected to have a major role in Star Wars Episode IX at this point is Chewbacca. Mark Hamill might appear as a Force Ghost or a disembodied voice, but he won't be a major character in the story. If Episode IX feels a need to connect itself to the original trilogy the way the previous films have with the characters from those films, bringing in Lando would be one way to do it.
The fact that Lando is a very attractive character right now, with Donald Glover's performance in Solo: A Star Wars Story being generally regarded as the highlight of the new movie, also makes it seem likely that this could happen. If you're ever going to bring Billy Dee Williams back into the main story, now is the time to do it.
Of course, even if Billy Dee Williams is returning for the next Star Wars film, we have no idea how the story is planning to use him. Will he be a major supporting player for the final film or will this be a Yoda-like cameo moment? None of the rumors would seem to indicate what sort of role this is.
Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for all the big rumors that will undoubtedly come out of Star Wars Episode IX in the coming months. With production set to begin shortly, we'll likely start to get some facts as well as some more interesting rumors to dissect.