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Rumor: Gary Oldman and Benedict Cumberbatch BOTH In STAR WARS: EPISODE VII?

Another day, another Star Wars: Episode VII casting rumor (it’s gonna be like this for the next couple months, kids, get used to it). This one comes from MarketSaw, a site you might have heard of before, if only because they were the first to ever report that Lucasfilm was actively working on a sequel trilogy way back in 2009, three years before any official announcement. According to their sources, the casting breakdown right now goes something like this:

“Ian McDiarmid, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher,, Mark Hamill, Billy Dee Williams, Anthony Daniels, Warwick Davis, Benedict Cumberbatch and Gary Oldman. 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, but I’m told they are both involved.”

What, no Kenny Baker?? Ok, so the big bomb dropped here, if this rumor is true, is that BOTH Cumberbatch and Oldman are purportedly going to be in Episode VII. Why have one British actor play an evil Imperial officer when two are better? (I mean, that’s probably what they’re going to play, right?) If true, this means Cumberbatch will give Hugo Weaving a run for his money as the go-to actor across multiple nerd franchises (Weaving, of course, playing key parts in The Matrix, The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, Transformers and the Marvel Cinematic Universe). If Cumberbatch lands this gig, he won’t be far behind Weaving, having starred in Star Trek Into Darkness, The Hobbit, and now, possibly, Star Wars. If he just shows up in either the Marvel or DC movie universes, then Cumberbatch and Weaving are tied. If Gary Oldman is also in this, that would make Episode VII a reunion, as both he and Cumberbatch both starred together in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.

Also in that batch of casting rumors is the suggestion that Ian McDiarmid will indeed be back as Emperor Palpatine. He’s the key villain of the entire saga, so this makes sense. Mr. McDiarmid is the very best thing about both Return of the Jedi and Revenge of the Sith, so the more of him, the better. The other cast we all know about (well, unofficially anyway), except this is the first I’ve ever head that Warwick Davis is back. While he could be playing another role, could Wicket the Ewok actually come back? Did the Rebels pull an Angelina Jolie and adopt a native child from Endor? Although the idea of an older, wiser Wicket as gunner on the Millennium Falcon or something is kind of adorable.

In terms of story details, this is what the original report had to say:

“Ultimately it’s about twins, and which will take a path towards darkness and which will follow in their fathers footsteps, or at least that is what it used to be, that may come later as I think changes are being undertaken to bring the original cast into the forefront of the story, leading to ramifications that lead up to the next generation of Skywalkers.”

So unlike the Expanded Universe, where the Jedi twins were Han and Leia’s kids, this suggests that Luke will have twin children to carry on the Skywalker name. Does this mean that Han and Leia didn’t get married or have children? Guess we’ll have to wait and see.

And finally, also in the report was this tidbit about the future of the Indiana Jones saga:

“Regarding Harrison Ford, two more Indiana Jones features are in the negotiation stages as per Ford’s contract clause on Star Wars”

Really?? While I could see Harrison playing an elder, General Solo in charge of the Alliance Fleet or something, I’m really having a hard time picturing seventy-something Harrison Ford rummaging through the ruins, especially after Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. If Disney is smart, they’ll reboot Indiana Jones and show us the unseen adventures of Indy back in his World War II heyday (just please don’t remake Raiders of the Lost Ark. Ever.)

With shooting scheduled to being in just a couple of months, we hope we’ll be getting real confirmations here pretty soon.

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  1. Jo79 says:

    ….but in the end as long as they bring out the quality and timelessness of the originals (and have Mara Jade in any form – flashbacks, force spirit, dreams, or even just verbally referred to) I will be happy!! 🙂

  2. Jo79 says:

    …Oh and I would prefer Palpatine did not come back even though he totally could as it happened in the Dark Empire Trilogy. I think Thrawn would be a cooler Antagonist and more fun – especially if Benedict Cumberbatch played him! I can understand some concerns about how much he has been in lately but that’s been a common trend in Hollywood since its existence! If they have Thrawns character in VII I can’t see anyone else playing Thrawn as brilliantly as he would considering Thrawn’s brilliance and personality!! And considering his skin would be blue and his eyes red he would look quite different enough to make you feel like he is a very separate character from his other ones! 🙂

  3. Jo79 says:

    A lot of these comments hit right on!! 🙂 Considering they likely won’t be sticking to the EU timeline -Cumberbatch as Thrawn, Oldman as Palleaon (that would be perfect and amazing!!), PLEASE have Mara Jade as Luke’s wife (even if it’s just a flashbacks and don’t change her name!!!) And it would make more sense for Leia to still have the twins because the twin gene always runs through the mother’s side – in humans anyway. And I’m excited if the rumor is true that VII will be focused on Luke, Han, and Leia!!! 🙂

  4. Ben says:

    There would still be skywalker children if they came from Han and Leiaas Leia is a skywalker. This doesn’t change anything. And if they do make Luke have the twins it better be with Mara Jade. And if they completely disregard the entire universe created by the books I may have a hard time liking this movie.

  5. Freezerbee says:

    I know it’s asking a lot but please God let Cumberbatch be Thrawn.

  6. Le'Ann Allen says:

    Hayden Christensen killed the Star Wars franchise for me. HOWEVER, my love can be revived if both Cumberbatch and Oldman will sign on. If this happens: 1. I will do an awkward white girl dance. 2. I will camp out for tickets. An Oldman/Cumberbatch combo in the Star Wars universe will be EPIC…in an already epic universe that was single handedly killed by Hayden Christensen. He sucked troll eggs.

  7. Regrix says:

    OK, first, Palpatine CAN come back, according to established canon, he had a hell-ton of clones of himself made which he can transfer his essence to.. He’s done it at least twice in the established SW media.

    second: ENOUGH with the Eggs Benedict Arnold Cumberbatch. I for one am tired beyond belief of seeing him show up in every single movie ever. (ok, overstatement is for effect). He’s been in Star Trek, he’s been in the Hobbit. He’s becoming TOO omnipresent, he’s watering down his brand and that makes him detrimental to SW. Let him go and do another season of Sherlock and leave SW alone. You fans of his get your fix and he doesn’t interfere with SW.

  8. Oyster says:

    The emperor actually does come back in the EU, and is a pretty big antagonist throughout. If you ask me, this sort of thing happens way too much in Star Wars. Have a bad guy that was really cool? Don’t worry, he cant actually die…

  9. khyrik says:

    Palpatine foresaw his death, and created a bunch of clones prior to the attack on the second death star.

    Throughout the rest of the Galactic Civil War, the remnants of the Empire experienced a sharp decline while the Alliance reformed itself into the New Republic. However, Palpatine did not stay dead, and eventually used a rare and ancient Force technique to transfer his spirit into one of many clone bodies stored on the Deep Core world of Byss. In 10 ABY, Emperor Palpatine resurfaced in the galaxy in a bid to rebuild his Empire, temporarily converting Luke Skywalker to the dark side and installing him as his apprentice. Palpatine’s efforts to live forever, however, were undermined by subversives within his own inner circle, including his Royal Guard Carnor Jax. With the last supplies of healthy clone bodies sabotaged and their genetic source material contaminated by his allies, Palpatine desperately tried to take over the body of Darth Vader’s youngest grandchild, the infant Anakin Solo, in 11 ABY. Palpatine’s spirit, however, was intercepted by the dying Jedi Knight Empatojayos Brand, who dragged the Sith Lord down into the depths of the Force forever.

  10. Michael King says:

    Really? Cuz I have a BRAND NEW ORIGINAL script sitting here on my desk, entitled “RAIDERS OF THE MISSING ARK: Conceived and written by SHIA LaBEOUF, based on an ORIGINAL idea by SHIA LaBEOUF, featuring beloved, culturally significant characters and situations created by SHIA LaBEOUF”.

  11. RG says:

    No more Ian McDiarmid. No friggin’ resurrections. Sith can’t become Force ghosts!

  12. MattC says:

    I think Warwick Davis could be replacing the 80 year old, Kenny Baker as R2

  13. Kristoffer says:

    i think i’m starting to become benner-dic-umber-atched out. He’s great but he’s cropping up everywhere. gosh darn it.

  14. j5150m says:

    Am I missing something?.. Palpatine is dead