Our first exciting peek at the characters of Episode VII

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Episode VIII’ve almost starting tuning out Episode VII rumors. Every since the writer and director were confirmed, very little has been officially released about the new film. Today however, Lucasfilm addressed a leaked casting call and for once the rumors were true! Apparently this is a real character list for the new Star Wars, and it raises both hope and concern and possible lends some truth to other unconfirmed rumors.

Here’s the actual list:

Late-teen female, independent, good sense of humour, fit.

Young twenty-something male, witty and smart, fit but not traditionally good looking.

A late twenty something male, fit, handsome and confident.

Seventy-something male, with strong opinions and tough demeanour. Also doesn’t need to be particularly fit.

A second young female, also late teens, tough, smart and fit.

Forty something male, fit, military type.

Thirty something male, intellectual. Apparently doesn’t need to be fit.

First, I like the age range they are looking for. While the original Star Wars had it’s brash young trio, part of what made the story was how the current generation fit in with the one before. And even then, the age difference between Han and Luke made a for a much more interesting dynamic, that it looks like they might be trying to replicate.

Original trioI also like the variation in types of characters we’re seeing here. Already, these characters have some substance to them, and you can see how they might play off each other. However, this is also where I start feeling a tingle of concern. The characters made the original three films work and lent to the entire franchise’s lasting popularity. I would be much more concerned if I thought the folks at the top were either ignorant off or ignoring this fact. From this list, it’s clear that neither of those is the case, but I also think it’s possible to overcorrect and wind up in the ditch on the other side. This movie really needs to pull from all the things it’s predecessors have done right, but if it ends up being a copy with new characters cut and pasted in, we’re going to be just as disappointed. So I’m optimistic about these characters, but I can also see strong shades of a New Hope here. Fingers crossed!

JainaI also have to wonder if this list lends any truth to earlier murmurs last week that this movie would be featuring Jaina and Jacen Solo. It’s all too easy to cast these descriptions and ages with EU characters that would fit with a story featuring the Twins. At the time, I completely disregarded the rumor, but since the story of the two oldest Solo kids to date is one of the things a lot of people both love and hate about the EU at the same time, I could see them retconing the story based on ten years or so of feedback. It would certainly be one way of making long time fans very, very happy.

 

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