May 15, 2014 is the start date for principle photography on Star Wars: Episode VII, and that’s now less than three weeks away, which means that — if the cast is locked — then J.J. Abrams’ mystery box on this one was his most effective: he’ll have kept quiet the primary cast of the film until days before shooting commences. But with that start date almost on us, they can’t hide their cast that much longer, right? Well evidence suggests we’ll finally know who’s going to be in the movie this week.
What evidence is that? Images and rumors of original cast members Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill in London. the male cast have been spotted in town while Fisher joked on twitter “So my do dog Gary has been spotted in London, but apparently without me. Who has he been seeing? Let me know if you have any clues.” Why would the trio be in London this week? All evidence is that the script for Episode VII has big roles for the original three stars of Star Wars, and their involvement has never really been questioned (well, Ford’s maybe, but he’s not adverse to money).
May 4 has become the unofficial Star Wars holiday (“may the 4th be with you,” get it?), but that’s on a Sunday this year, so it seems likely that sometime this week the cast will finally be announced. If it isn’t this week… perhaps the day before shooting starts? I’m sure that some fans are itching to know whose been cast, but with such a blank slate of a narrative, and such a prolonged pre-production process, casting can only tell us so much. The only way Abrams would start on the wrong foot is by hiring a bunch of Nickelodeon/Disney performers who embody the worst cliches of child actors. Otherwise, it will probably feature some talented people who are happy to be involved with the franchise.
The main issue is that hopefully those actors selected have been training in secret. Think of the NDA’s signed by swordmasters, because there has to be some lightsaber action. At this point, though it’s possible they are making some last minute decisions, Abrams has to have the main cast locked into place, but with a film like this it won’t be until we see some footage, until we see something that makes this look like an evolution or something that captures the magic of the OT that we’ll start doing cartwheels, which makes this whole hiding thing odd. At the end of the day, the only way the prolonged build up to the making of the first of many new Star Wars films will be remembers is if Star Wars: Episode VIII is a dud.
Who would you like to see in the cast of Star Wars: Episode VII?