Mark Hamill has revealed he did not sign on to reprise Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: The Force Awakens until co-star Harrison Ford agreed to play Han Solo one last time.
J.J. Abrams' 2015 film ushered fans back into the Star Wars mythos with a fresh narrative and new generation of characters breathing life into the franchise. However, the legacy characters, spearheaded by Luke, Han and Leia, remain the backbone and beating heart of the famed saga. And while Hamill was relegated to the back seat in The Force Awakens, having only a brief cameo without any dialogue in the movie's final scene, Skywalker will be at the center of everything come Star Wars: The Last Jedi. This, however, was not always the case, as the 66-year-old actor reveals that he was initially skeptical of picking back up a lightsaber and putting back on his Jedi robes.
Speaking with The New York Times, Hamill recalled how he ultimately decided to board The Force Awakens and reprise the role that made him famous almost four decades ago. As it turns out he was seriously considering turning it down due to various reasons -- including not wanting to risk stepping back into Luke Skywalker's shoes aged and different from how fans remembered him. At that point in time, Hamill was also quite sure that Ford wouldn't come back as Han Solo because "he’s too old and too rich and too cranky." Things changed, however, upon learning that his co-star actually agreed to do the project. “Can you imagine if I was the only one to say no? I’d be the most hated man in nerd-dom,” Hamill said, reliving the possible horrors of being regarding as the person who put the kibosh on another round of Star Wars. Fortunately, that was not the case and the actor continues to bask in the love and support of die-hards who appreciate all the work that he has done for such a culturally-impacting movie franchise.
Always the showman, Hamill's stories are always intriguing and fun to listen to, especially when it is about the behind-the-scenes makings of arguably the most popular film series in history. In the same interview, he talked about his old and new experience with the Star Wars series, his extensive career in the entertainment industry that followed and Carrie Fisher's untimely and tragic demise last year. He also shared a hilarious conversation with his space twin about him wanting to shed off his Luke Skywalker image and venture into new horizons, with which the always opinionated actress effectively put into perspective saying, "I am Princess Leia. You’re Luke Skywalker. Get used to it."
As we inch closer and closer to the release of the next saga installment from Star Wars, fans are already bubbling with anticipation what comes next for the supposed last remaining Jedi. From the trailers, it seems like Luke's experiences have pushed him in a place of skepticism and doubt of the very doctrines that he dearly followed and believed for most of his life. Hamill has previously admitted that it was a struggle for him to come to terms with the character arc that director Rian Johnson had for him in The Last Jedi, but with so much secrecy that revolves around the film, it is safe to say that we won't really know how everything pans out until the film hits theaters in a month and a half.
Source: The New York Times
- Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017
- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: Episode IX (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019