We saw lots of characters we know and love in Star Wars Episode VII: Luke, Han, and Leia, C-3PO and R2-D2, and Chewie, but one of the loveable things about the Star Wars movies is the wide cast of character we know and love. The characters from the original trilogy are some of the most beloved for fans, and there are plenty missing from the Force Awakens.
The most glaring is Lando Calrissian. The gloriously mustachioed part-smuggler, part-gambler, and part-legitimate businessman was an established member of the rebel alliance by the end of Return of the Jedi, both helping break Han free of Jabba’s palace as well as pilot the Millennium Falcon during the final battle. Why doesn’t he show up during Episode VII? It could be the character will show up in the next movie (in a fun mirror of the original series), or it could be for a reason related to a real-world issue such as money.
There are plenty more. Hardly anyone imagined Boba Fett actually met his end in the Sarlacc, and though many would have liked to see him, not many expected it. Denis Lawson, the actor known for playing Wedge Antilles during (most of) the original series, turned down an offer to reprise the roll, stating he would be bored by what they were likely to offer him. Even Mon Mothma, a Rebel leader and likely Republic politician, doesn’t receive so much as a name drop during The Force Awaken’s 140-minute run time.
Then again, one of the legitimate criticisms of the prequels is the flagrant and unnecessary shoe-horning of characters viewers recognize from the original trilogy, so perhaps it’s to the movie’s favor they don’t try to put every single recognizable face in front of us.
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