‘Star Wars: Episode VII’ Looking to Cast ‘Breaking Bad’ Actor in Lead Role

Published 1 year ago by

Star Wars Episode VII Jesse Plemons Star Wars: Episode VII Looking to Cast Breaking Bad Actor in Lead Role

Something of the great white whale of current entertainment journalism, the as-yet-untitled Star Wars: Episode VII will no doubt be a source of speculation and rumor right up until its December 2015 release date. There’s little wonder in this – despite being less than two years from one of the most anticipated debuts in film history, the movie’s production has yet to make a single casting announcement.

Many actors have been rumored to be courting or courted by director J.J. Abrams (Star Trek: Into Darkness) for roles in the film, including Benedict Cumberbatch, Matt Smith, and Chiwetel Ejiofor. Now, a somewhat surprising actor is said to be in heavy contention for one of the headliner spots in Episode VII – Jesse Plemons, best known as the dopey-yet-murderous Todd on Breaking Bad.

The Wrap asserts that Plemons is being strongly considered for a lead role in Star Wars: Episode VII. Apparently, Plemons has already submitted a well-received recorded audition to the production and has been asked to return to do a live audition for Abrams. The report has gone unconfirmed by anyone directly involved with the film’s production, and the exact role Plemons has auditioned for is unknown.

While not a widely known star, the comparatively young Plemons is a seasoned actor who has been acting on film and TV since he was 10 years old. While he may currently be best known for his work on Breaking Bad, Plemons broke into television in a big way with his recurring role as Landry Clarke on Friday Night Lights. He has also put in side-role turns in movies such as Observe and Report, Paul, Battleship, and The Master.

Breaking Bad Jesse Plemons Star Wars: Episode VII Looking to Cast Breaking Bad Actor in Lead Role

Though it’s slightly odd to consider that an actor primarily known for television work may soon headline a Star Wars film, Plemons could be an interesting and able choice. In his turn as Todd on Breaking Bad, the actor managed to convey both puppy-like naiveté and genuinely creepy, depthless sociopathic behavior.

Considering this, one has to wonder what kind of character Plemons is being considered to slip into for Episode VII. Deployed as a villain, his charm and boyish looks could provide an antagonist very different than any yet seen in a Star Wars movie. As a hero, those same attributes could help build a lovable space rogue in the mold of Han Solo.

Thus, my long-shot choice for the role: How about a son of Solo? Even if Star Wars: Episode VII abandons the brood of Solo children from the Expanded Universe’s multifarious properties, a child sired by Han and Leia could provide a solid link between the old and new guard of the Star Wars film universe. With his hair mussed, Plemons definitely has a young Harrison Ford sort of look to him. Will he soon be plying the spaceways with a new generation of scoundrels?

All such (completely baseless) speculation aside, Plemons’ potential casting is fairly exciting news. It indicates that Abrams is willing to look to nontraditional sources for talent – something that George Lucas himself definitely did for the original Star Wars. We at Screen Rant will be keeping a close watch on this rumor to see just how it plays out.


Star Wars: Episode VII will arrive in our galaxy on December 18th, 2015.

Source: The Wrap

Follow Kyle Hembree on Twitter @ProjectNightHam
TAGS: Star wars
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  1. What, were there more younglings that needed killed?

    • lol. Line ‘em up!

  2. Lol.. I Know! He looks to strange to be the son of a Skywalker or Solo.. I’m just saying..

  3. They better not stray from the books. I really hope it’s the Legacy series they chose. I don’t know who this kid would play out of those characters though. Maybe Ben but he’s too old. He can’t be Jacen.

    • Dude, you know they’re gonna stray. I’ve given that dream up. They’re going to stray and we’re watch it anyway. I’m trying to accept that so that I can like whatever new ideas they have. To tell you the truth, new star wars isn’t necessarily bad star wars. Some really cool stories can be made up in that universe.

    • The Expanded Universe is irrelevant for the movies. Sure, Lucas may have declared some of those books to be canon back in the day, but that was just so that they would sell better. In essence they are nothing more than authorized fan fiction. The new movies might lift a good a idea from the books here and there, but otherwise they will do their own thing. That’s guaranteed.

      • yeah, Lucasfilm’s stamp of approval on the EU was nothing more than marketing and also in other words they were saying, “your story is passable and readable and not total s***.”

        I find some of the stories kind of cool and compelling like Shadows Of The Empire, which ironically showed the Luke lightsaber building scene before the actual Deleted Scenes finally came out. They marketed the hell out of that with games, figures, you name it. That was probably the furthest Lucasfilm approval I’ve seen. Either way, the canon of Star Wars truly lives and dies with George.

        • uh, you do know that Shadows of the Empire IS official canon, look it up…..

        • But a least the EU novels were better than the prequel movies

  4. Cool!

  5. I hope they don’t stay completely faithful to the books. There’s a lot more subpar stories out there than great ones. And EP#7-9 won’t be Legacy based. They want a fresh start.

    He looks like a mix of Luke & Mara Jade, if they go that route.

    • They’ve already said it will be an original story, in other words, no EU.

  6. At first glance Plemons does not appear to possess the concentration and graceful movements of a Jedi Guardian, nor does he give the impression that he could be force sensitive. He does not look like he has the attention span or serenity needed to be a Jedi Consular and I can’t see a reasonable person casting him as a Jedi Sage.

    Perhaps, they are casting him as a member of the Massassi Caste, but again he does not strike me as cunning enough to survive inside Sith society. Its starting to feel like Abrams is not channeling Max Bialystock.

  7. It would be cool if he was the main protagonist of the movie. Here is an idea: He could be similar to his character Todd in Breaking Bad but smart and not a psychopath. His character could be a mix between a Han Solo / Man with no name character but with more empathetic qualities. Jesse Plemons does not look like your typical Hollywood hot shot hero but he isn’t totally unattractive either and conforming to formulaic Hollywood formulas is stupid anyway. Acting ability is what matters (and JP is a pretty good actor I think)

  8. Typo – it feels like Abrams IS channeling Max Bialystock

  9. Meth Damon in Star Wars huh?

    • could be worse. could be Justin Dweeber

  10. The curious thing about Starwars is I love the idea of it, the nostalgia and the memories of whatching these movies as a kid. That being said, the prequels killed any excitement i had for the franchise. This movie has to make people care again, because eventhough I’m a huge fan.. my love for it has been running on fumes for a long time and I’m sure deep down a lot of people feel the same way.

  11. Not a bad choice, I thought he was pretty good in Breaking Bad. He channelled both a kind and sophisticated criminal to a conscienceless and subtle psychopath.

  12. LANCE!

    I’ll always know him as Landry from Friday Night Lights, but he was also fantastic in Breaking Bad. I’d love to see him get his break in the new Star Wars film as long as he isn’t completely miscast.

  13. He’s a good fit in the mold of the original trilogy. We will likely see some EU characters, but the announcement of new Star Wars after the battle of End or automatically renders all EU non cannon.

    • When are fanboys going to learn, if it wasn’t in the FILMS, keyword, FILMS, then it is NOT CANON. I don’t care if Lucasfilm put their proverbial “stamp” on story lines, the EU is nothing more or nothing less than creative interpretations of the Star Wars universe and their characters. While they may certainly be entertaining and present the classic “what if” factor, there is no way that stuff will ever or should ever be canon. The deleted scenes are even canon, because they were INTENDED pieces that were cut for editing purposes but still provide extra information, like Luke building his lightsaber or even in the prequels like Grievous killing that alien girl Jedi, it was filmed with George’s vision behind it. I’m even inclined to say everything not written by Lucas isn’t canon. Whatever JJ Abrams ends up doing, I’m not sure I can stand behind it, because the characters were not from HIS vision, but rather George’s. George, as much as I now despise him, is the Maker, and now that he left, the canon dies with him. The fact that he’s an advisor is better than him directing, but it’s still not enough influence to make it canon IMO. Hopefully Abrams presents a very compelling tale and the fact that the main characters are in it is the only reason I have high hopes for this.

      • Only a Sith deals in absolutes

        • You’re absolutely right.

        • His character is gonna steal blue lightsabers and mass produce the blue crystal for criminal use

  14. I guess that at some point, we can expect an avalanche of actual Star Wars casting news. Until then, who knows…Plemmons does not resemble Han, Leia or Luke IMO. But I do think that he’s a good actor, so that’s cool.

  15. You know, he kind of reminds me of Eden Sher (Sue in ‘The Middle’) in the sense that I think we are going to find out over the next few years just how talented these two actually are. So, I am all for it and I would not be surprised if he ended up stealing the movie.

    Trust me. Eden is going to win an Oscar in her lifetime. It won’t be for comedy either.

    • Except this guy can’t act, so there’s that.

      • I think he is a really talented actor. His character in friday night lights is miles away from his character in BB. which is miles away from his character in Master. He was very convincing in all 3, and i think this is great news.

  16. How long have we known about E7, and yet, we still do not even know if Hamill, Ford, or Fisher will be reprising their roles. Tired of the secrecy game in Hollywood. Ironic, though…don’t talk about a movie, and you create neverending buzz about it.

  17. I’ve seen this kid in two roles. BB and that Seth Rogen movie. Both times he played an expressionless simpleton. It worked for the roles, I guess. But I’ve seen no indication that the kid is any kind of actor. I don’t find him very interesting to watch.
    .,…..On the other hand, maybe there’s a call for an expressionless simpleton in the upcoming film.

  18. He was pretty solid in The Master

  19. I don’t know. I can see him as a comedic sidekick, but not as a lead character. Sorry.

    Perhaps I haven’t seen enough of him, just his performances in Breaking Bad and Battleship. I might be wrong.

  20. Dont like the look of this guy this film is going to suck. Too many high expectations.

  21. I like his acting ability and relative unknown-ness, loved him in Breaking Bad, and by loved, I mean I wanted to punch his face out in every episode after he shot that kid. However, it was his acting ability that MADE me hate him more. He carried the role well.

    I just don’t think he looks like Han OR Luke, I’d much rather him play a bad guy, like an imperial officer or a young Sith. I will admit, he would be PERFECT in a role of one of their kids who because of their inherited Force powers succumbs to the Dark Side and turns against his family and friends. He could do that well I think.

  22. “… it’s slightly odd to consider that an actor primarily known for television work may soon headline a Star Wars film…”

    You mean like Mark Hamill, who was only really known as a TV commercial actor until he played Luke Skywalker?


  24. Until we know what role he would play or even what this movie will be about it’s hard to say if he’s right for the movie.
    His talent is unquestionable though. Breaking Bad fans already know this but as I’ve already said until we know more it’s hard to really give an opinion.

  25. Did you mean Meth Damon?

  26. WOW!!! once AGAIN, a LEGIT comment of mine does not post, yet a comment that described Jesse Plemons as the down syndrome son of Matt Damon…. REALLY?!?!?! what are the freakin’ rules here??? i can see it is pointless and a waste of my time to try and participate here… BTW, if it’s an e-mail issue, i’m currently having to use my Wii for web, can’t access my e-mail often

    • @figs – Not sure why your comment was flagged but I published it as is. On the other hand, the other comment in question has been removed.

      Paul Young – Moderator

  27. I have nothing against Plemons and thought he was excellent in his role on Breaking Bad (as the overly dutiful and somewhat creepy, if not a bit slow, bug burglar turned meth cook) but as the progeny of wither Solo or Skywalker? Hell freakin’ no.

  28. If Jesse Plemons is offered a role, I’m willing to bet he’ll be playing Ben Skywalker.