Rumors seem to be floating all over for upcoming Episode VII filming. As hinted around Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford will be reprising their iconic characters in the next installment, but another Star Wars Veteran has thrown his hat, or I should say bowcaster into the ring.
Peter Mayhew, the actor who played Chewbacca in the original trilogy and also in Episode III, Revenge of the Sith has said: “I intend to pursue the role of Chewbacca for Episode VII,”. This is a surprise as Mayhew 69, recently underwent double knee replacement surgery. Earlier this week there was a casting call in the UK for a “Untitled Studio Feature” by Walt Disney Pictures/LucasFilm/Bad Robot (J.J. Abrams Studio). The call is for a Male, 7 ft to 7.3 ft tall with a slim/thin build and upright posture. Not too worked out or too ‘thick set’ especially in the shoulders. Broad facial features would be a bonus. It was also stated that shooting would begin in 2014.
Now, all signs point that this would be for Star Wars Episode VII unless Disney, Lucas and Bad Robot are shooting another film at the same time in the UK. The only character from previous episodes that would fit the description would be Chewbacca. It makes sense for Chewbacca to be back in the next film with the other regulars as we never saw his demise.
As a life long fan, I was saddened when I saw the original casting call, as I thought that Peter Mayhew wasn’t going to be able to play the character he is so well known for. I know there is no indication 100% that the call is for someone to play Chewbacca but all signs point to that. The way Peter walked and did everything as Chewbacca was just perfect. I don’t know of another actor that would be able to pull it off. I know some think, well you don’t see the person and he doesn’t talk so how hard would it be to put another person in the suit? Well to someone like George Lucas, he likes to keep everything the same and as perfect as he can. Also, the Star Wars fans are very particular on how things are done in the films and anything that isn’t right, the fans will speak out. During the filming of Return of the Jedi, Mayhew became ill and was unable to do some of the scenes so an extra was brought in. All the scenes that were shot with the extra had to be reshot once Mayhew was better. As long as Peter wants to do the role and is healthy and strong enough to play Chewbacca, I don’t think there is any reason he shouldn’t. As more news comes out we will be sure to report on it.
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