If you were an actor or actress and J.J. Abrams came a-calling with even a small scene for you to appear in for Star Wars Episode VIII, wouldn’t you drop everything for the chance? Maybe even if you weren’t an actor. Well, it happened for Episode VII, but this is a world with many interlocking parts, so some actors and actresses had a few things to clear up before The Force Awakens could appear. They range from requests and acting choices all the way to:
John Boyega (Finn), when he heard he’d been given the lead role, dropped out of a Jessie Owns Biopic (Race), and was replaced by Stephan James, who also appeared in Selma. Race comes out February 19th, 2016. Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill both received personal trainers and nutritionists to help them get in shape for their respective roles, and after announcing his role in Episode VII, actor Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) had to work around his shooting schedule for HBO’s comedy-drama series Girls.
Lupita Nyong’o has said she wanted to play a role where her distinctive appearance wasn’t important, and she got it in centuries-old space pirate Maz Kanata. Anthony Daniels, the man behind the C-3PO mask, was originally going to be contributing only his voice, until Abrams and/or Daniels himself (sources are split) decided to make it an acting role as well. Egregiously tall Peter Mayhew again played Chewbacca, but due to Mayhew’s age and knee problems was replaced with Joonas Suotamo (6’ 10” Finnish basketball player and actor) during action sequences.
We’re sure there are plenty more stories from every actor and actress that will be revealed with time, but this is what we know already. Thanks for reading! If you’re looking for more fun fan Star Wars information, be sure to check back next week!