When a film is as highly anticipated as Star Wars: Episode VII, it’s bound to collect more than a few rumors. Most recently, both Jesse Plemons of Breaking Bad fame and Chiwetel Ejiofor, the star of 12 Years a Slave, were rumored to be up for roles. There’s been several rumors about the possible spinoff films, Boba Fett’s in particular. (Could Lawrence Kasdan be working on it? Will it still be Jango’s clone in the armor?) And with extensive rewrites to Episode VII‘s script pushing the release date to late 2015, there have been rumors that these changes allow for Luke, Leia, and Han to have larger roles than initially planned.
Director J.J. Abrams recently confirmed the script for Star Wars: Episode VII has been completed. Filming is expected to begin soon, which means in the coming months, all these casting rumors may in fact become casting facts. In the meantime, however, rumors surrounding Episode VII can be as outrageous and bogus as they please. Case in the point, the latest rumor concerning Episode VII casting – Judi Dench as Mon Mothma, former leader of the rebellion.
The “scoop” comes from the most recent episode of Big Shiny Robot‘s Full of Sith podcast. There’s absolutely nothing solid to back the rumor up, and in fact, their source, Bobby Roberts, only goes as far to say Dench’s name is being discussed. So, could there be any truth to Judi Dench being sought out for the role of Mon Mothma in Episode VII?
Reason suggests this is a rumor that is about as unlikely as they get. Then again, back before Episode I, it was pretty hard to imagine Samuel L. Jackson as a Jedi. (With a purple lightsaber, no less!) And who would have guessed prior to ’77 that the legendary Alec Guiness would join the cast of a sci-fi movie like Star Wars? In that case, Dench really isn’t as outrageous a choice for Mon Mothma as she initially seems. Star Wars has a tradition of pulling from classically and stage-trained actors just as much as it does for casting relative unknowns.
But what of original Mon Mothma actress, Caroline Blakiston? A quick IMDB search reveals the actress, age 80, is still working in television. While Abrams seems so concerned with bringing back Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford and expanding their roles, it’d be a shame for Blakiston to be looked over. Especially as she’s obviously still a working actress and is only a year older than Dench.
Then again, recasting Mon Mothma isn’t all too unbelievable. She isn’t a character who’s very well known beyond the most ardent of Star Wars fans. Dench is an instantly recognizable name, an award winning actress, and she has proven herself very popular for blockbuster franchises with her role as M in multiple James Bond films. Attaching a name like hers to Star Wars: Episode VII, even in a minor role, would definitely heighten interest for what’s already one of the most highly-anticipated movies of all time.
What are you thinking, Screen Rant readers? Could Judi Dench soon join the Star Wars universe as Mon Mothma? Let us know if you think this rumor is bogus or not in the comments below.
Star Wars Episode VII releases in theaters December 18th, 2015.
Source: Big Shiny Robot