The cast for the next Star Wars has been announced and as expected there will be several actors from the original trilogy reprising their roles alongside several new characters. The most surprising announcement is that Princess Leia will appear in the film. Don’t worry – Disney is not going to replace the late Carrie Fisher with a CGI model. It turns out that Lucasfilm is sitting on top of plenty of unused footage featuring Leia that was originally shot for The Force Awakens and the studio is going to work that into the new movie with consent from Carrie Fisher’s daughter, Billie.
“Finding a truly satisfying conclusion to the Skywalker saga without her eluded us. We were never going to recast, or use a CG character,” said director J.J. Abrams. “We have found a way to honor Carrie’s legacy and role as Leia in Episode IX by using unseen footage we shot together in Episode VII.”
Mark Hamill will also return as Luke Skywalker while Anthony Daniels will reprise his role as C-3PO. A good Star Wars story needs a good scoundrel and Billy Dee Williams will fill that role as Lando Calrissian returns to the big screen. The other returning cast members are Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Kelly Marie Tran, Joonas Suotamo, and Billie Lourd. Naomi Ackie, Richard E. Grant, and Keri Russell join the cast as new characters – we’ll fill you in about them as more information is released.
Filming for Episode IX begins on August 1st at Pinewood Studios in London, England.