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Popcorn & Prejudice: A Movie Blog

Seattle Times writer Moira Macdonald muses on moviegoing. Email Moira: mmacdonald@seattletimes.com.

April 29, 2014 at 12:07 PM

‘Star Wars: Episode VII’ cast announced

Top row (L-R):Mark Hamill ESSEN, GERMANY - JULY 28:  Actor and producer Mark Hamill, best known for his performance as Luke Skywalker in the original Star Wars trilogy, attends the Star Wars Celebration at Messe Essen on July 28, 2013 in Essen, Germany.  (Photo by Sascha Steinbach/Getty Images) 159759319 Harrison FordWEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 02:  Actor Harrison Ford attends the 2014 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Graydon Carter on March 2, 2014 in West Hollywood, California.  (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images) 470941293 Carrie FisherCarrie Fisher, in Wishful Drinking, created and performed by Carrie Fisher directed by Tony Taccone and playing in the Bagley Wright Theatre April 2 to May 9, 2009. Photo copyright Michael Lamont. Wishful Drinking is a Jonathan Reinis Production in association with Berkeley Repertory Theatre. For press inquires please contact Katie Jackman at 206-443-2210 x1001 or press@seattlerep.org. Peter Mayhew**FILE**  Actor Peter Mayhew, who depicted the character of Chewbacca in the first three sci-fi "Star Wars" movies, poses for the photographers prior to the UK premiere of the film Star Wars Episode III, Revenge of the Sith, the last in the series, in Leicester Square in central London in this Monday May 16, 2005 file photo. British-born Mayhew will be among 441 people from 77 countries who will become naturalized Americans in a ceremony in Arlington, Texas on Monday, Oct. 17.   (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis, FILE)Max von SydowFILE - In this Feb. 10, 2012 file photo, actor Max von Sydow poses at the photo call for the film Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close during the 62 edition of International Film Festival Berlinale, in Berlin. The cast of “Star Wars: Episode VII” was announced Tuesday, Aril 29, 2014, on the official “Star Wars” website by Lucasfilm. Actors Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Domhnall Gleeson and von Sydow will be joining the cast. (AP Photo/Gero Breloer, File) NY122 Kenny BakerStar Wars actor Kenny Baker signs autographs during the opening day of 'Star Wars Celebration IV' in Los Angeles 24 May 2007. The five-day convention celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Star Wars saga. AFP PHOTO/GABRIEL BOUYS (Photo credit should read GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/Getty Images)Anthony DanielsAnthony Daniels, who played C-3PO in "Star Wars." He's appearing at KeyArena next week. For a Your Monday story.  Courtesy of Anthony Daniels 2009Bottom row (L-R):Andy Serkis  FILE - In this Nov. 4, 2013 file photo, Andy Serkis attends VIP Screening of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug in London. The cast of “Star Wars: Episode VII” was announced Tuesday, Aril 29, 2014, on the official “Star Wars” website by Lucasfilm. Actors Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Max von Sydow, John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Domhnall Gleeson and Serkis will be joining the cast.  (Photo by Jon Furniss/Invision/AP, File) NY121 Domhnall GleesonFILE - In this April 25, 2014 file photo, Irish actor Domhnall Gleeson arrives for the 'Frank' premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in London. The cast of “Star Wars: Episode VII” was announced Tuesday, Aril 29, 2014, on the official “Star Wars” website by Lucasfilm. Actors Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Max von Sydow, John Boyega, Daisy Ridley and Gleeson will be joining the cast. (Photo by John Phillips/Invision/AP Images, File) NY123 Adam DriverFILE - In this Sept. 8, 2013 file photo, Adam Driver attends a news conference for "The F Word" on day 4 of the Toronto International Film Festival in Toronto. The cast of “Star Wars: Episode VII” was announced Tuesday, Aril 29, 2014, on the official “Star Wars” website by Lucasfilm. Actors Oscar Isaac, Max von Sydow, John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Domhnall Gleeson and Driver will be joining the cast. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File) NY118 Daisy RidleyHandoutJohn Boyega FILE - In this March 5, 2012 file photo, British actor John Boyega stands for photos after he presented the First Light Awards, in London. The cast of “Star Wars: Episode VII” was announced Tuesday, Aril 29, 2014, on the official “Star Wars” website by Lucasfilm. Actors Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Max von Sydow, Daisy Ridley,  Domhnall Gleeson and Boyega will be joining the cast. (AP Photo/Joel Ryan, File) OTKOscar IsaacFILE - In this May 20, 2013 file photo, actor Oscar Isaac poses for portraits at the 66th international film festival, in Cannes, southern France. The cast of “Star Wars: Episode VII” was announced Tuesday, Aril 29, 2014, on the official “Star Wars” website by Lucasfilm. Actors Adam Driver, Max von Sydow, John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Domhnall Gleeson and Isaac will be joining the cast. (AP Photo/Laurent Emmanuel, File) CAN117

Top row (L-R): Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca), Max von Sydow, Kenny Baker (R2D2), Anthony Daniels (C-3PO). Bottom row: Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac.

Should be some guys lining up outside Cinerama any day now, no? This morning, starwars.com announced the cast for the next and long-awaited installment, which has a release date of December 18, 2015. Along with the returning “Star Wars” veterans Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, and Kenny Baker, the cast will include newcomers Oscar Isaac (recently seen wrangling a cat in “Inside Llewyn Davis”), Adam Driver (Hannah’s oddball boyfriend in “Girls”), John Boyega (“Attack the Block,” TV’s “24: Live Another Day”), Andy Serkis (a.k.a. Gollum in the “Lord of the Rings” series), Domhnall Gleeson (“About Time,” Bill Weasley in the “Harry Potter” movies), Max von Sydow (veteran actor and two-time Oscar nominee, recently seen in “Shutter Island” and “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close”) and Daisy Ridley (who’s worked mostly in British television, including “Mr. Selfridge.”). It was not announced who would play which role, though Driver is widely believed to be playing a villain.

All of this puts an end to a wildly active rumor mill, recently speculating that, among others, Benedict Cumberbach, Lupita Nyong’o, Gary Oldman, Michael Fassbender, Hugo Weaving, Saoirse Ronan and Chiwetel Ejiofor were being considered. Maybe so, but the names announced today are the final cast. Director J. J. Abrams, who wrote the screenplay with Lawrence Kasdan, begins shooting next month.

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