Last week, word got out that Harrison Ford was officially signed on to reprise his role as Han Solo in the coming “Star Wars: Episode VII.” And while that news was exciting for fans of the original trilogy, it seems someone may have jumped the gun just a little bit.
According to ET’s interview with Mark Hamill – who played Luke Skywalker in the original trilogy – none of the original “Star Wars” cast members have made any official commitment to the upcoming movie.
“I can tell you right away that we haven't signed any contracts,” Hamill told ET Wednesday in an effort to downplay recent rumors. “We're in the stage where they want us to go in and meet with Michael Arndt, who is the writer, and Kathleen Kennedy, who is going to run Lucasfilm.”
Lucasfilm recently was acquired by Disney.
Based on Hamill’s remarks, it seems that the return of the original actors is no sure thing. He did state, however, that he would love to have the original cast back together, including Carrie Fisher and Billy Dee Williams.
“And another thing I'd want to make sure of is, are we going to have the whole gang back? Is Carrie and Harrison and Billy Dee and Tony Daniels, everybody that's around from the original [returning]? I want to make sure that everybody's on board here, rather than just one,” Hamill said.
How did this rumor of an official reunion get started? The report came from Latino Review’s Umberto “El Mayimbe” Gonzalez, who broke the story on Fox News Latino. Latino Review is a Hollywood gossip site that has made its name by scooping traditional trade papers such as Variety and the Hollywood Reporter. Gonzalez said Ford’s deal to again appear as Solo is “significant.”
Still, while it is not confirmed that Fisher, Hamill, and Ford will be reprising their roles, Hamill says that they won’t be replaced by any other actors.
"George [Lucas] wanted to know whether we'd be interested,” Hamill said. “He did say that if we didn't want to do it, they wouldn't cast another actor in our parts – they would write us out.”
And while Hamill wants to be involved in the new “Star Wars” trilogy, he admits that he has no idea what Luke Skywalker has been up to in the past several decades. His best guess? Luke ended up becoming a recluse like Obi-Wan Kenobi.
"I'm assuming, because I haven't talked to the writers, that these movies would be about our offspring,” Hamill said. “Like my character would be sort of in the Obi-Wan range [as] an influential character. … I thought, 'Well, I'm going to wind up like Sir Alec [Guinness]. I'm going to be a lonely old hermit living out in some kind of desert igloo with a couple of robots.'"
Hamill also would love for the new “Star Wars” trilogy to scale back on the digital effects that many thought ruined the prequels.
"I hope they find the right balance of CGI with practical effects. I love props, I love models, miniatures, matte paintings -- I'm sort of old school,” he said. “I think if you go too far in the direction of CGI it winds up looking like just a giant a video game, and that's unfortunate. … If they listen to me at all, it'll be, 'Lighten up and go retro with the way it looks.'"
And while the rumors about Harrison Ford and Mark Hamill may be premature, several online rumors have turned out to be true so far. For instance, rumor mills speculated that “Star Trek” director J.J. Abrams would step in to direct “Star Wars” as well, and that turned out to be completely true, so don’t write out the return of the original stars just yet.
Eric Brown is an IBTimes reporter who eats far too much pizza. He is a graduate of Mercer University in Macon, Georgia, and currently resides in Brooklyn.