Tuesday, April 29, 2014

FINALLY Real News! Episode VII Cast Officially Announced!

Well over a year ago we received news that there was going to be another Star Wars movie.  Then there were months and months and months of dodged questions, vague answers, weird rumors and "announcements" that were more often than not just announcing something that they had already told us before.  I was beginning to give up hope that we'd ever learn anything, or even that the movie was truly going to happen at all. 

Today, we finally have some answers.  We still have some questions, too, but we certainly have some concrete answers, some good news, and still some speculating to do.  For those of you who don't know already, the cast has been announced.  The big three are returning.  While honestly, after everything that had been said I didn't really think that they wouldn't be back - why bother with all of the non-denial only to months later tell us, oh, sorry, we're not actually going to be in this one? - it is still a huge relief to me to see that it is finally official.  I'm a sucker for nostalgia and I don't care how old they are.

Then we have a list of actors that can be found elsewhere, most of whom I've never heard of.  I don't think that's a bad thing.  After all, the big three were virtual unknowns at the time.  I also think it's better to have people we don't (yet) recognize very well so that we can fully be absorbed into the movie, rather than looking at some 25-year old and thinking, gee, remember when I used to see him on that Disney tween show?  That would be annoying.  The only thing we really need to know at this point is what roles exactly these people are going to have.  I'm sure at least a couple are Skywalker/Solo offspring, but it remains to be seen which ones.

But, seriously, this is really happening.  We get to see Han and Leia and Luke on screen again.  We get to see Han and Leia (presumably - we have no reason to believe otherwise) married.  Can you imagine if back in 1983 someone had told you that in 2015 you were finally going to get another Star Wars movie to follow Return of the Jedi?  First of all, that would've felt like so far infinitely in the future that we might catch up to them in technology.  But really, would you have believed it?  Forget the prequels, of course.

Anyway, still plenty more speculating to do, but we finally have some actual news, and we finally are seeing Harrison, Carrie and Mark in the same place at the same time.  How crazy is that?  My geek side is on overdrive right now.  And I cannot wait for this movie.


  1. Interesting cast, and I also welcome the choice of unknowns, think that's a wise move. Sadly there is only one person who I think could potentially be a child of Han and Leia, and that's Daisy Ridley, pretty girl with a look of Natalie Portman about her, so I'm pretty sure she's our Solo gal :)

    And I'm geeking like crazy because the Big Three are back, and wow, that is just beyond awesome, I'm so happy to have them finally confirmed :)

  2. Oh, also Chewie. How can we forget Chewie? The Solos get Chewie! Notably absent is Billy Dee Williams, though. I'll admit I don't really care either way on that one.

  3. Interesting how they are seated, and I'm wondering if this is deliberate. The probable Solo daughter is sat between her parents, with Chewie next to them. But Luke is sat directly opposite next to Threepio, and with the actors whom I assume will be playing young Jedi? As this is a script read through I'm assuming it makes sense to sit the actors next to the actors they have the most dialogue with near each other, right? So The Solos are all together and Luke maybe spends most of the movie with other characters maybe?

  4. I think what I find the most interesting is just how big this news is that every news outlet (around the globe, I presuming) has reported on it. Just when you think you're alone in your geek corner, something you loved from childhood is international news. Probably intergalactic. Just having one of those "I remember when" moments.......

  5. I'm way excited! If you'd told me in 1983 that I'd be watching a new Star Wars movie for my 60th birthday, I'd have said, yeah, right!

  6. Yeah, I'm totally geeking out today. It's embarrassing. And I think that Daisy girl is gonna be a Solo daughter. It fits the rumors, and notice her sitting between Harrison and Carrie? Yeah, I'm banking on her being our Solo kid. Cool. I have no idea if she's a good actress, but the look seems right. And I like the idea of another strong female character.

    Good day today! That photo is amazing!!

  7. Yeah, I've been tripping balls over this picture all day. It's so is weird. And fricking exciting. I'm going to see Luke, Han, and Leia again, what the hell! And I agree about Ridley, she must be a Solo...she's extremely Natalie Portman-esque.

    I'm psyched about Andy Serkis being involved.

  8. I definitely had a whole fan girl moment yesterday. I'm SO excited to see the Big Three back. And had several people sharing the news. They know me so well. :) But so very stoked about this.

    Interesting they picked Gollum and Bill Weasley for roles. Has anyone else noticed there is no one that looks like Mara? I know they are leaving the EU, but surprised they'd cut her with her fan base. Has poor Luke been a monk all this time? Or will he have a wife that dies like in the EU?

  9. After months of speculations, it's great to see the actors of the original trilogy together again. I too was geeking out like crazy yesterday. But I'm also a bit scared of the high expectations I have for this film (I've been waiting 30 years for it so....) I remembered how disappointed I was after seeing TPM or to some extend Indy 4. I want the "magic" to operate like it did back then. But for now, I'll just enjoy this! ;)

  10. Yesterday was kind of a stressful and crummy day for me, marring the excitement a bit. I thought the whole thing went over with more of a whimper than a bang.

    But then last night I had _tons_ of ep VII dreams! Go fig :-)

  11. Oh, and seriously? They cast ONE new woman? That's just pathetic.

    1. Lol, this is SW, it has always had a lack of women, but I'm cool with that because I'd rather look at the guys ;) But at least we get awesome women, like Leia, and I'm sure her daughter (assuming that's who she is) will kick ass just like her mother :)

    2. It only takes one good woman right? Just ask Han. ;)

      And I'm down with looking at the guys. :)

    3. Yeah, I was a little disappointed, too. Hopefully, they'll be some additional females as supporting characters. Although, I was hoping we'd at least get a female villain-ish character. We bitches can be scary. ;)

      And I might be forgiving if at least the new character has a meaty, ass-kicking role. That would be nice.

  12. At least the one woman so far hasn't been the simpering arm candy that they typically are. Leia kicks tail and takes no prisoners... I'm hoping the new girl will be similar in temperament...

    I'm now getting excited... just a bit :D

  13. I'm not going to get bent out of shape right now over this about there only being one woman here. It's not like this is EVERYONE in the movie. There are still rumors that that girl who won an Oscar for 12 Years a Slave will be in. I'll be interested to see if there are more announcements on Sunday for May the Fourth. There are some rumors floating around I'm not going to comment on yet since they might not even be true. Certainly things will get interesting now. I don't even know what I'll do the first time I see some photos from the set of the cast in character. OMG, I might have a heart attack. I mean, I can't die before I get to see the actual movie.

  14. But why is Artoo in the corner in a box?

  15. Carrie is listed as Leia Solo on IMDB. Don't know if it was mentioned earlier. I was looking around and decided to see what they had there. None of the new actors have character names.

  16. IMDb is not always the most reliable, having said that, a couple of websites who reported the casting news this week have also referred to Carrie as Leia Solo, so maybe there really is something to it. Hoping so.

  17. This has nothing to do with anything, but that post on f***yeahhanandleia with Threepio and the Luke/Leia kiss keeps making me laugh *so* hard. I don't know why….

  18. Okay... I haven't posted in a REALLY long time but I feel that I must now with all of the news going around. First off I want to say that I am not at all disappointed in this cast. I think it is an awesome group of talented people and I do love that we barely know who any of them are. That being said I do have some concerns. Concerns that Zyra thinks I am crazy for (lol). Funny story, the day before all of this happened I was the one telling Zyra everything was going to be okay, that Abrams was our man, and then in a 24 hour period I totally went bipolar on her. Sorry Z!

    First, where the hell are all of the Skywalker/Solo children? Lucas himself said that the films were about the Skywalker family and without that there were no films. He is the creative consultant right? So with that and the fact that I trust JJ Abrams I thought we were in good hands. Like you guys said, only 1 MAYBE 2 people look they could be from the Skywalker/Solo family. My fear is that this will be like the video games. You ALMOST run into Han Solo or you hear something about Luke Skywalker but you never come into contact with them the way that you want. If these are in fact going to be what we consider canon I don't like where this LOOKS like it is going. I find it unbelievable that Leia and Han would only have one child and in the same breath find it unbelievable that Luke's kid could be older. Han and Leia were together before Luke was even married so to me its believable that Han and Leia would have already been cranking out kids before him. Not to mention I think it's believable that a family full of orphans would want to have a lot of kids just because they never had a real family before. With that being said, I think the argument of only having one female is ridiculous. For one, I think Daisy Ridley will be our main character (and definitely a Solo). On top of that there was only one female in the OT and that worked out fine. Second, like some of you said, I want to look at the males too. I am a red blooded American female and I just want to see hot dudes and who is hotter than Han Solo's son? Doesn't look like we are getting that. Now I could be wrong and there could be more cast announcements but I am not going to hold my breath. And it's not that I wanted Jacen, Jaina, Anakin, and Ben on screen. I just wanted something like that because I find those stories (or could be stories) more interesting than a bunch of characters not attached to Han, Luke, and Leia. And in that sense why even bring them in if its not their children's story? I could be wrong though.
    Second, and the most scary to me is the fact that Han Solo may die. I get it, Harrison Ford always wanted him die. I've been hearing it since I was 9 years old but why bring him back and make a big deal about it only to kill him off in the first movie? So you're telling me I get three more Star Wars movies but my favorite character dies in the first movie? No thank you. I don't want to see that. I thought Abrams would not want to do that either, just so he didn't piss people off or maybe because he is such a fan himself that he didn't want to see that either, but I have changed my mind. I don't see how that adds more depth to the story. There are much more interesting ways to had depth to Han Solo and his story. I am praying that this doesn't happen simply for that fact that everyone is expecting it and JJ Abrams is known for the unexpected.
    Why does this all matter to me so much? Why does it keep me up at night and sometimes I feel like I cant eat? Because I have been dreaming about these movies since I saw ROTJ almost 20 years ago. I even talked about these films when I first started chatting with Zyra and Diggs back in 2010 and they told me I was crazy and they were never going to happen. But now it's happening and I just want to see it done right. Especially if this is my canon now. I understand I cant get exactly what I want and I understand that my expectations are too high but I cant help it.

  19. What a great post :)

    I'll chime in with regard the lack of Skywalker/ Solo children. Yes, it does seem very odd. I think we definitely have a Solo daughter there, but as you have rightly pointed out, the guy who looks like he COULD be Luke's son is considerably older than her, which I find extremely odd. I mean, Han and Leia were ready to buy a house at the end of ROTJ and I don't think it's a stretch to imagine them having a child within 2 years. But if this kid is Luke's then he was making babies right after the credits of ROTJ rolled, because this guy is easily 30 years old and Han and Leia's girl looks ten years younger than that. That to me just does make sense. So my theory is, and I'm pretty convinced it will be the case, I think Daisy Ridley is their YOUNGEST child and they have at least one, maybe more, older kids who will only be very minor characters, just in the background. Hence why they aren't at the script reading. It's possible they will become more important in episode 8. Oh and there's a rumour that just won't go away, people keep theorising that Adam Driver, he's the weird looking dude playing the villain, is their son who has gone bad a la Jacen.

    As for Han dying, sadly, I'm thinking this really could happen. :(

    1. Sorry, typo in above post. Should read it DOESN'T make sense, not it does make sense. Doh!

    2. Yeah, that thing with Luke possibly having a kid older than Han and Leia's kinda stuck out for me, too. I was like "Really? B-but…." But as for *when* they decided to have kids (many years post-ROTJ as opposed to almost right away), I don't have a problem with that. I mean, we really don't know *what* was going on in the wake of the last trilogy. Their lives could've been really hectic for awhile, for all we know. They might've "settled down" and gotten married, but doesn't mean they were ready for kids. Or maybe Leia was just like "you know what, I worked really hard through the war, I have a chance to help build something great here…" and so she decided to focus on her career first. She's an independent gal, I wouldn't have a hard time buying that. In any case, you probably have at least one Solo off-spring, so I'm not gonna get to worked up over the age or timeline of things.

    3. I've heard the rumor about Adam Driver being Han and Leia's son as well but I think that is just wishful thinking. And honestly, my gut reaction is telling me that he is not related to Han or Leia or even Luke for that. With that being said, sometimes in the right light, I look at Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, and Oscar Issac and think that there is a possibility that they could all be siblings. Maybe, but neither of the guys really look like Han or Leia. Who's gonna play Han and Leia's kids has been a game of mine for an extremely long time. Even way before the movies were announced. Also, did anyone see the YouTube video JJ Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan just posted on the Star Wars page? JJ Abrams said "and as casting announcements (plural) continue..." Did he just let something slip? I hope so. My biggest fear with this movie is that they would not follow the family. Maybe I'm spoiled by the EU but the movies are about the family. I keep saying that but they really REALLY are and without that I (personally) am disconnected. I don't mind have tag along friends, but damn, it doesn't even look like Luke has a wife. That's sad. Especially coming from Mara Jade who was so awesome. I thought for sure that these movies would follow Luke's son.

      Stoned, your right. Anything could've happened, but to me what we've been shown so far just doesn't make any sense. If anyone understands that its you guys. Who has thought about this series of events more than people like us right? Even if they hadn't had children (or a child) within five years after ROTJ I think it would've eventually happened and definitely before Luke. I think Luke would be more distracted with his Jedi training than Leia with her career. Especially if she already has a partner. Oh well... only time will tell. Fingers crossed. And hopefully JJ and Harrison wise up and don't kill Han Solo off because I really cant handle even the thought of that.

      Oh! And happy May the fourth!

    4. Adam Driver is no where near hot enough to be Han's son. I mean come on, ladies, his son would be smokin' hot, wouldn't he? Oscar Isaac is good looking, but he looks too Latino to be related. I would say he might be a love interest for the Solo girl, who will turn out to be a chip off the ol' block and go for an older guy, like her mother did ;)

      Yes, more cast to be announced. I honestly think there will be at least one Solo kid as a supporting character, infact I'd be surprised if there wasn't. We may also see a wife for Luke emerge in the next casting announcement.

      And Jarik, you are so right. We all have our own ideas of when they got married and when they had kids, I doubt that many of us envisioned them waiting ten years to start a family. It's possible they did, but it just doesn't sit right with me.

      There are rumours of Han having a lead role, much bigger than Luke or Leia. I don't know how much truth there is to that. But it lends weight to having his big death scene and going out with a bang. I hope that isn't the case.

    5. I know! Adam Driver cant be Han and Leia's son and neither could Oscar Issac unless they did some major grooming of these actors. I've heard rumors that Issac may be a Han Solo type character but I heard the same about John Boyega. I also speculated that Daisy Ridley's character may have a romance with him... or Adam Drive in an Anakin/Padme way. Nah...

      More cast to be announced but how much more? I do see a wife for Luke. Although the actresses who's name have been thrown out seem to be a little young for old Jedi Master Skywalker. And I kind of want to believe that there is another surprise in there for us. That maybe, just maybe, there are a few more characters yet to be announced because of their weight in the story and a want for an element of surprise. But the guys from the Forcecast made a point. They said that they (Disney/Lucasfilm/Abrams) probably made this announcement because so many actors were going to be gathering in one place at one time. It was going to come out sooner or later. Hell it already was. So even though I hope for more casting announcements I don't think its likely besides our other female role.

      Also, I feel that there is an overreaction with there only being one female character and one black character. Cant we focus on what the story calls for and not make this movie some sort of statement to the world? There was only Leia in the OT and Padme in the Prequels. Lando in the OT and Samuel L Jackson in the Prequels. Why wasn't anyone outraged then? Let's just get a good story out of this no matter what sex or race these characters are.

      The rumors of Han Solo being a lead role is what scares the living crap out of me. I didn't wait twenty some odd years and say prays every night for a sequel Star Wars trilogy for my favorite character to be killed in the first movie. I'm okay with Han being a secondary role but I do NOT want to see him dead. I could say more about my love/hate relationship with Harrison Ford but it will get really ugly and I don't think you guys want to hear that.

      I have to say I am little upset that Jessie Plemons wasn't in that announcement. I am a HUGE Breaking Bad fan and really I would have liked for everyone in Breaking Bad to be in Star Wars but that's just ridiculous lol. "Yo! May the Force be with you... bitch!" But really Jessie Plemons would've been awesome.

    6. Regarding gender and racial diversity in the new cast (or lack thereof): I'm all about getting a "good story" out of the new movies, but why does a "good story" and diversity have to be mutually exclusive? Can't we have both?

      I'll admit that I didn't get all upset with the prequel casting at the time, but I also don't think I was paying as close attention. As for Padme? Her being the only female would've sat better with me, if she wasn't such a pathetic example of a female heroine.

      Leia? Yeah, she was alone, too. But at least she made for a strong female role-model. And I just feel like people are more conscientious of it now, because we are also more aware of how diverse the fan base really is. Seriously, when I was growing up? "Star Wars" were considered "boy movies"--in fact my college roommate even called them that when she saw my VHS trilogy on the shelf. And when I was a kid, I was the only female fan I knew--which was okay, I guess. Since I mostly played with boys at the time. But now, we know better. There's going to be lots of little girls watching these films, and trying to emulate our new heroes, so why can't they have some more female role models to choose from? Otherwise it just feels like tokenism.

      I also think this goes for racial diversity as well. That's why I'm still holding out a very small hope that that rumor about casting the woman from "12 Years a Slave" still comes true. I'd love, love, love, to see her in "Star Wars". Yes, the diversity would be nice. But also because she is a very beautiful and talented actress, and I think it would only benefit "Star Wars" to have her come into the fold.

      *shrug* But that's just my modest opinion.

      As for "Breaking Bad"-type casting. I think I'd rather have seen Aaron Paul than Jessie Plemons. ;)

    7. Stoned, I'm not disagreeing with you at all. We can definitely have both. Man, this is a really slippery conversation.

      All I am saying is that I want more Skywalkers and Solos. I personally wanted these movies to follow that story line. Like I said before it doesn't have to be Jacen, Jaina, Anakin, and Ben but I like the dynamic of a group like that and found that very interesting in the EU. I felt that it could have been more interesting especially in a movie setting. I thought with Lucas as the creative consultant and having always said the films were about the family that they would stick to that. Maybe they are. With that being said, if that is the story, it doesn't really leave much room for diversity except for female characters. But I think that Daisy Ridley and her character will put this all to rest when we see the movie. And I think John Boyega is more than likely gonna kick a lot of ass too. Hell he's rumored to be the lead!

      As far as role models. That's a lot of pressure to put on a writer. I could go on and express my opinion here about how as a female I don't really care about having female characters but its all just opinion. It's not really worth it. All I care about is more Skywalkers and Solos! That's all I care about! Because like Claire said, Han Solo would probably have a hot ass son and I wanted to bask in that. Hell maybe a couple of those. So I mourn what could have been (or hopefully I'm wrong).

      Speaking of diversity Giancarlo Esposito would've been an amazing bad guy in Star Wars! And I agree Aaron Paul all the way bitch!

      Are we cool, Stoned? Cause I've been a follower for a very long time. lol!

    8. I'm really hoping for a really good story. That's probably most important to me. And for it to follow the Skywalkers and Solos. If it doesn't follow them, I'm not sure how much I'll be interested. And I'd rather have 1 kick ass Leia than a hundred of anyone else. As long as there is one strong female lead, I'm pretty happy. But that's just me.

    9. That's exactly what I am saying Amara! I'm not sure how interested I will be if the story doesn't follow the family AND if they kill off my favorite character. I will check out after the first movie at that point.

    10. Man, they kill off Han and I might lose it. Just no way I could handle that. Unless he dies in bed with Leia. That might be ok. ;)

    11. Well I am glad I'm not alone in this. I need a support system!

    12. Oh my god, JarikSolo, I really, really, hope I didn't give you the impression that I was offended or annoyed by your posts. Not at all. I would feel terrible if you felt that way, Sorry, I just honestly enjoy these kinds of debates, and sometimes I'm too….spirited, that's all. We're totally cool. I mean: "We're all fine. Here. Now." Right? ;)

      And you make good points about the Solo/Skywalker clan, and I agree, I'd like to see more characters with a family connection. But they can't *all* be Skywalker/Solos, you know? Insert diversity. ;)

      And as for adding more female characters? I don't see how that's too much pressure to put on a writer? I'm not trying to be bitchy, I just don't understand what you meant by that.

      Hmmm…..like you, I'm having a hard time articulating my position on why I think it is important for their to be more female role models--that is, I'm having trouble doing it without going off into some long-winded sociological argument about why I feel this way. But I do think it's important. That's not to say I don't appreciate watching the guys running around doing their thing, because I do. Ha ha, I appreciate it very much. ;-) But in a cast of this size, surely they could've found room for more than just one new female lead. And in that sense, I understand why people are upset.

    13. Regarding role models: I think they're important because they make such a difference in people's lives. People in a position of privilege can have a hard time understanding how important it is because we've had lots of role models to choose from. One story that made a big impact on me is the one Whoopi Goldberg tells about seeing Nichelle Nichols in Star Trek for the first time and running to tell her mother that there was a black woman on TV, and she wasn't a maid. It was amazing for me to imagine having no-one like me in the arts and media who who got to be heroic. And over and over again people in underrepresented groups have said that it makes such a difference in a kid's life to see that.

      I think it can be a challenge to writers, but hopefully one worth taking on. Unfortunately, arguing for "story" over "diversity" is a classic apologia for unfair representation. At root, does anyone really want to be saying, "the story I have to tell can only be told by white men. To include more people of color and women in my story would betray it." And for all that I love Star Wars, with all my heart, for all the gratitude I feel towards George Lucas for bringing it into the world, the man has some issues representing women. The metal bikini is just the tip of the iceberg. But he created a universe bigger than himself, one that resists his efforts to rein it in: it's a beautiful thing. Even if Lupita Nyong'o isn't cast, I'm still hopeful that I'll love whatever this movie turns out to be.

      By the way, the tumblr The Feminist Fangirl talks a lot about diversity in representation. The author's comments can be very enlightening.

    14. I wouldn't get worked up about it quite yet, but that's just me. But fair enough if it's bothers you. I bet more cast announcements are coming and there may be a whole lot of female Jedi included. But I still maintain I'd rather have one Leia than a 100 poor female leads.

      And sorry, but I still like the bikini. Leia owned it and I don't think she let it drag her down. At least not from what we saw. And her inner strength is one of the things I love about her.

    15. Woah! Awesome! We got a good conversation going here. Okay first things first. Stoned, I didn't think you were being offensive. I just didn't want to make myself look like a racist or a sexist. Well I have to admit I am pretty sexist, but that's just cause I like men so damned much. So, yea, we are totally fine. And I could debate this all day long, we kind of already have, but the thing is, we are just two differing opinions at this point. No ones gonna win this debate. And I don't know if we should be airing out our differences all over Z and Push's blog. You can shoot me an email if you want though. I am in a frenzy about all of this stuff at the moment so over email I wouldn't mind giving you a long spiel about how I prefer male lead characters to female or your opinions. And how I DO think that this cast is pretty diverse as far as Star Wars goes. I just look at the size of this cast compared to the OT and the Prequels and there is literally no difference what so ever. Just you guys wait, we are going to be surprised.

      You're right. They cant all be Skywalker/Solos but I still wanted more than what has been shown. Star Wars is known for having a big group of authentic characters. I'd just like to see everyone happy in this situation. And I do have to agree with Amara one thousand percent, I'd rather have one Leia than 100 poor female leads and I think we got a good one here. I have high hopes for Daisy.

      How is this pressure on the writer? I just think having to actually think about gender and race and writing characters a specific way could be stifling. To me writing just comes out and that stuff doesn't matter. More so I just write what I know. I know these guys are professionals but I just don't think lines or rules should be laid out for these guys. But it's Star Wars I really don't think we need to make a big statement about gender and race here. I'm in it for the fantasy of it all. I am not going to a Star Wars movie thinking about things like this. I am just there for a wild ride. I'm in that theater to shut off my brain for a couple hours and just take in a new adventure. Does that make any sense at all? lol!

      If we're going to get into role models here, and I really don't cause I don't want to go off some long-winded sociological argument either or offend anyone, but what about girls like myself? I have never felt the need for a female role model. I always go for the guys. And that is just me and my personality but to me Han Solo was more important that anyone else on screen. Sure Leia's cool but Han Solo IS my role model. I joke with my friends that I AM Han Solo because I am at the age he was in ANH and I act exactly like him. Cynical, sarcastic, and just a pain in the ass the entire step of the way. So that's why female role models aren't important to me. As bad as it sounds, and I apologize for it, I just don't care about it at all. Daisy Ridley is going to do a good job and that is enough for me. Sorry to sound harsh. Especially to Lady Peter cause have you seen a spike in views of your stories lately? That's all me Lady Peter. I am hooked on your stories. Very interesting plot you got going there. You email me too if you want to chat about that cause its so different from what we've seen in the past. I'd love to pick your brain.

      I also personally don't think Lucas has as problem with women. He brought one of the first strong female rolls to Hollywood whether he intended to or not. He still did it it. And I have to agree with Amara again. The bikini was awesome. Leia rocked it so hard that men still lust after her. And she strangled Jabba in that thing. You go gurl.

      And one last agreement with Amara. I do think more casting announcements are going to be made. JJ Abrams said it himself in the selfie he and Kasdan posted on the Star Wars YouTube Channel.

      Oh! My email is JarikSolo@live.com if any of you guys do wanna email me. Amara, didn't we meet at Celebration?

    16. Again, I still don't agree about "the pressure on writers" argument, and how "thinking about gender and diversity" would be stifling in a way that would interfere with their creative process. Three very obvious examples come to mind: First two: "Shawshank Redemption" and "The Pelican Brief". In the novels, both Morgan Freeman and Denzel Washington's characters were actually white. African-American men were cast in these roles anyway, and it didn't change the story a bit. And Sigourney Weaver's character in "Alien"? Originally supposed to be a male. Again, changed to a female with little difficulty.So I really don't think it's the rocket science that you're making it out to be.

      Okay, so doing that kind of "whatever" re-casting might not work in every instance, but especially in a movie like this? A GFFA, where "writing what you know" will only get you so far anyway, I don't see how having a more diverse cast of characters would handcuff the writers at all. We're talking about creating stories for Jedis and soldiers, not trying to recreate "the black experience in 1950s South" or something. So I"m not sure how even a white male writer could mess this one up. It's a fictional galaxy. It seems your characters personal experiences are going to be whatever you want them to be. You know what I mean?

      And Lady Peter, I felt a rush of relief at seeing your post. I was feeling a little….lonely in my position.So, thank you for joining the conversation. :-)

      And I didn't switch this to email, well, because I thought others might want to join in, or at the very least Zyra would get a kick out of the "comment" activity (Besides, as Zyra can attest, I'm terrible at checking my email). But I will gladly clam up if either of the bloggers would prefer I did. Personally, I think it's an interesting conversation. And differing opinions don't offend or bother me at all. I rather enjoy it. But I'm weird. And I hope I'm not offending you, JarikSolo. I hope you take this debate in the spirit it's intended.

    17. Just to say that I agree with Amara's earlier post about Han and Leia dying in bed together. If they have to die, then that's the way it has to be ;)

      I would be distraught if Han died, no question. But I think I would be even more devastated if he and Leia broke up between ROTJ and episode 7. I am a fan of them as a couple more so than just them individually, so for me they absolutely have to be together. If they have been married 30 years and have had a peaceful existence between the movies and he dies, I would be more excepting of that than if we learn they separated early on and haven't spoken to each other for 30 years. That would be heartbreaking.

      So, I absolutely DO NOT want Han to die, but I want them to have had a good marriage more than that. Sadly, I can't see all of the big 3 surviving this new trilogy. I think we will be saying goodbye to one or two of them.

    18. I think I get what Jarik is trying to say. It might be kind of hard to sit down and write and say I'm going to write a strong female character now. There's a good chance it will come across as forced. Joss Whedon was inspired first before he wrote Buffy, not the other way around.

      And I'm with Jarik too on why I watch. I'm in it for the fantasy of it all. I don't go into the movies looking for any of this. I go into it for the ride. And lucky to have found characters I love. No offense, but Star Trek I'm sure is much better for social commentary and I can watch that if I need some. I watch SW to check out the hot guy and the kick ass girl. That's more than enough for me.

      I think it's interesting that Han is more of a role model for you. And kind of neat in a way. I was actually going to say if a character is a good person and role model, does it matter what's on the outside? I get that people may need someone to identify with, but I think you can take inspiration from anything you want.

      We did meet at Celebration, Jarik. :)

    19. Well said. I'm along for the ride too, and don't analyse how many female characters there are, or how many black characters, I just want GOOD characters, that is the most important thing. It's escapism. Let's not take it too seriously, just enjoy it for what it is :)

    20. First I want to say you can feel free to continue this discussion. I think there are interesting points on it. And I do think it's a fair point to make. Personally, I'm not ready to get bent out of shape on the lack of women being cast just yet. In no way am I looking at this as though that's it, there could be no other cool women in the cast. I think we'll see more going on.

      While I certainly don't agree with making a cast diverse just for the sake of it, someone else mentioned up there that the beauty of Star Wars is that it leaves a lot of room in such a big galaxy for all sorts of different characters. Leia was just as important as any of the men involved in the Rebellion. Women can have some pretty powerful positions. Obviously we want the Solos and Skywalkers to, well, look like Solos and Skywalkers, but there can still be plenty of other characters. I mean, even just looking back at the other movies, if you think about it, Obi Wan actually could've been a woman without changing very much. Mace Windu could've been a woman. I'm not saying they SHOULD have been, just saying that it isn't a huge stretch for writers to change certain characters when it comes to gender, so I don't really buy that argument. And Jarik, knowing what I know about you, I'm pretty sure you'd rather see ANY story told from a man's point of view, but to a lot of us, it's kind of sad when based on what we see in the movies, a story can't really be worth telling if it doesn't come from a man's point of view. I'm certainly not a major "Girl Power!" person, but when I realized that almost none of the greatest movies ever made involve female protagonists, or even any scene where two female characters share a conversation that isn't about the men, well, that's actually pretty sad.

      Again though, at this point I'm not getting worried about anything. I think there will eventually be more women involved. I'm not going to get angry or irate if there aren't, but I will be a little sad that once again there is only room for one cool chick in the universe at a time.

    21. Sure thing Stoned Rose! I was a bit hesitant to jump back in, but I didn't want to leave you swinging in the wind :-) And when we can all talk about this in such a friendly and collegial way it makes it so much easier to tackle the thorny issues. So thanks for that, everyone.

      Jarik: so glad you're a fan! I'd love to talk more. Shoot me a PM, OK?

      Again I'm seeing the argument that people want good characters, not diverse characters. And yet again, why in the world would these things be incompatible? I do agree that the idea of legislating the creative process can be troublesome, and it is always true that we're free to consume the media we like, and ignore the media we don't like. But I think we're also free to offer criticism, especially of something we love.

      Concerning role models: that's great, Jarik, that Han was a role model for you. I imagine you must (like Han) have pretty high self esteem to begin with. It does seem that the majority of kids like or need to see people who look like them in order to identify them as role models.

      And here's the thing: If one feels, as a white woman, that she has not had trouble finding role models, then good for her. But in this particular case, I don't think there's much comparison to be made between white people and people of color. Think about the Whoopi Goldberg story: before Trek, she had never, EVER, seen someone like her on TV who was not a servant. You might not think that's a big deal, but maybe you can respect the fact that hundreds of people of color do say that it's a big deal. White girls might not have had much, but we had a whole lot more than women of color. I don't think it is fair to say that role models don't matter when one hasn't experienced the level of prejudice that women of color in particular have experienced.

      And finally, to argue that Star Wars is meant as light entertainment and should not be considered seriously is honestly quite disingenuous. Obviously Star Wars is important to all of us, otherwise we wouldn't be spending our time here talking about it, reading about it, writing about it. Our popular culture says EVERYTHING about who we are as a society and what our shared values are. If you grew up feeling that popular culture didn't represent you, wasn't meant for you, denigrated you, then perhaps you'd feel differently. And I think we should show respect for those who did grow up feeling that way.

    22. Look no one is wrong here. I think we all just have varying opinions and I don't want to keep going around in circles about this. I just keep going back to my original statement of where the hell are all the Skywalkers and Solos!?! That's all I care about. I guess the diversity thing bleeds in because having that would mean having a big group of white people. I honestly don't know what you guys wanted from this. There has always been a lack of diversity in Star Wars and it just doesn't seem like a big issue to me. I understand that it is to you guys but you got what you got. And same for me, I got what I got which appears to be a lack of Skywalker/Solo children.

      Personally it doesn't look the like the writers were held in handcuffs about this. That's why we're having this conversation. To be frank we got one black guy, one girl, a ginger, and a Hispanic guy in the cast. What more do you want? Did you guys really expect an entire female cast for Star Wars 7? I mean if that's the case I think you guys are in the wrong fandom. It's always been like this and frankly who cares? I still love it! I don't mean to sound mean or angry because I'm not. This is all in good fun. I really don't know what else to say on the matter.

      Stoned, I am totally not offended by any of this. I am just feel like I am riding this line of being a racist and I'm totally not! Sexist? Yes I will call myself a he man woman hater. Now that makes me the weird one and I can't really explain why I am like that either. You know what does offend me though? The fact that you play with my emotions by never updating that god forsaken story of yours. I feel like I've been reading that story since high school. Yea that offends me. ;)

      Claire, yup I totally don't want to see Han die unless it's of a heartache from overexertion. And I don't think any of us should be worried about Han and Leia not being married simply for the fact that it would be too much to explain to an audience who is expecting it. I can imagine kids being completely confused about that as well. It probably doesn't do them justice to split them up.

      With Claire's statement, I really feel like I can't talk about Han and Leia having sex on this blog the way I talk about it in real life. You guys would probably shame me with the stuff I could say since my sense humor is a lot like Zach and Miri Make a Porno. I guess I look at it from a guys perspective. I've probably said some bad things to Z. Have I?

      Amara I am glad you're on my side. You're a cool chick. Glad to be talking with you again. That was a strange coincidence at Celebration. "Wait your Digs?" Lol! We laughed at that for hours after we left that day.

      Oh Z your so friggin diplomatic and yea you know me too well. I totally agree with what your saying but I don't think anyone should be saddened or disappointed. Except for me cause where are all the damned Skywalker/Solos!?!

      Lady Peter, I don't think having good characters and diversity should be two separate things. Did I come off as saying that? I think this is just a slippery slope and we are all sort jumping to conclusions here. Does it make a difference if one of said diverse character is in fact that main character of the story? Because that adds a lot of weight to me and I think that is what's going to happen. And I get that our popular culture says something about us, you are right, but sometimes I just don't think it's intended. Sometimes you don't really mean to make a statement like Lucas with Leia but sometimes that means more than when you do. Ahsoka for example. I hate her! Cause it feels like they were trying to force a strong female character down my throat but with Leia it was just natural and that's why we love her above all else.

    23. That was too funny, Jarik, how I ran into you and Digs that day. :) That was a pretty great day and trip. And it is good to be talking again.

      I would agree. We do just have varying opinions and that's cool. I certainly didn't mean to be disrespectful to anyone if it came across that way. And I'm up for a fun, friendly debate. However, I do choose to see SW as lighthearted entertainment and my escapism. That's my choice and it should be respected or at least tolerated. I really don't see there is a problem with choosing to see things that way. ALL opinions should be respected, even those we disagree with.

      Zyra, I think you bring up an interesting point about Obi-Wan and Mace Windu. I could definitely see Mace as a woman. As a matter of fact, it's surprising there were no women on the Jedi Council unless we can't tell the women of different species. Qui-Gon might have been another good female role. I'm not sure Obi-Wan could have been unless we only knew him from the prequels. But that's just me. I'm not sure in 1977 they would have been ready for a female in a heavy mentor role.

    24. It was a good event and super funny how we just happened to be standing in line next to each other and just figured each other out. Weird. You going to Celebration VII? I am. I wouldn't miss this one for anything. Especially since while we were there I did make the statement "hey guys wouldn't it be cool if Celebration VII was for Episode VII?" And boom it happened. Shoot me an email. I'd love to chat. JarikSolo@live.com.

  20. All I want to know is where is Benedict Cumberbatch as Grand Admiral Thrawn.

    jzhanfan back from the dead...sort of