…One of these five guys. Maybe.
Variety is reporting that J.J. Abrams is close to casting the lead role in Star Wars: Episode VII with only a handful of actors on his short list and it is a very interesting short list indeed. According to their sources the main character (who will not be the offspring of Leia and Han Solo or Luke and.. um… Luke’s friend) could be one of these five actors, however they did add he caveat that ‘the search is still on‘ just incase this turns out to be bunk.
So, who could be (allegedly) facing off against the (rumored) villainous Adam Driver, who’s (reportedly) been cast as the films bad guy?
- Ed Speleers, best known as Jimmy Kent on Downton Abbey and to a lesser degree as the title character from 2006’s Eragon. With Abrams being a big fan of his work (on Downton Abbey that is,) and not to mention the franchises history of casting Brits, maybe Speleers has a good shot at the role.
- Broadway star and Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark survivor, Matthew James Thomas, is also on this short list. Another Englishman who’s had a great deal of success on the stage as well as appearing in the Academy Award nominated films Billy Elliot and About a Boy.
- Next is John Boyega, no stranger to sci-fi fans after battling aliens in Attack the Block. OK, I am not saying that having ‘kick alien ass’ on the resume is necessary, but it helps.
- Not really a new rumor for number three. TV’s “Creepy Todd” of Breaking Bad fame, better known by his given name of Jesse Plemons, is reportedly still in the running. I’ve been told that he played a very likeable and not kid killing character in Friday Night Lights as well so he does have some range.
- The fourth possible star, Ray Fisher, who portrayed Muhammad Ali in the recent run of Fetch Clay, Make Man on Broadway seems to be the most obscure as far as mainstream acting gigs go. Granted, when the first Star Wars was made, Harrison Ford was the only star that had any roles of note under his belt and those were all minor or supporting at best.
See what I mean about an interesting list? No big name stunt casting options, some TV cred or theatre experience. If this list turns out to be the true final five for the lead in the next Star Wars, Abrams definitely has some good choices here.
Not picking favorites, but I did mention that Boyega has experience with kicking alien ass, right? Could come in handy in a cantina or two.