Harrison Ford Ducks The Episode VII Question And Makes Benedict Cumberbatch’s Day

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Nobody knows anything about Star Wars: Episode VII. Well, okay, that’s not entirely true. We know the basics. We know J.J. Abrams is directing it, and co-writing it with Lawrence Kasdan. We know it’s the first film of a new trilogy, and of a larger Star Wars cross-media push now that George Lucas’ beloved fictional universe is under the banner of the Mouse. Aaaaaaand…well, that’s pretty much it. Everything else is rumor and speculation. Now some rumors border on the inevitable, such as the involvement of Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, and Mark Hamill, but no matter how almost certain that possibility may be, until it’s in a Disney press release, it ain’t confirmed.

Consider, then, the plight of Harrison Ford, making the rounds for Ender’s Game and doomed to be faced with variations of “Are you now or have you ever been playing Han Solo in Episode VII?” on every talk show couch that bears his weight between now and whenever they make it official. How many times can you not-answer the same question before you go on a killing spree? Thankfully Ford is a pro, and has been dodging this sort of question for 30+ years, but I always enjoy seeing the guy grouse and grumble his way through the situation with his scruffy, nerf-herding charm. In a recent appearance on The Graham Norton Show, Ford had the Ep VII lobbed at him for the 80 bazillionth time, and while his usual hemming and hawing is always fun to watch, this time he threw Benedict Cumberbatch into the path of the bus, but also managed to make Cumberbatch’s day in a way that’s charming to see.

Talk show interviews are usually so generic and sound bite-y, it’s really cool to see a genuine exchange like the one above. Whether Ford is actually a big Cumberbatch fan or just being gracious to a fellow actor, watching Cumberbatch’s inner eight-year-old momentarily lose his mind over the fact that Han Solo just complimented him is something I think everybody grew up with Ford as one of the brightest stars of our pop culture universe can relate to, and it definitely put a smile on my face.

Given that Cumberbatch is kind of hot stuff thanks to Sherlock and Star Trek Into Darkness, and since he worked with J.J. Abrams on the latter, it was inevitable that his name would be thrown into the Episode VII rumor hat. And naturally, he hasn’t been able to say yea or nay, because that’s not how this kind of thing works. I would love to see the guy in a Star Wars role, though. Hell, between that, Sherlock, and his role voicing Smaug the dude’s filling up his geek-icon bingo card at an impressive rate. I have no doubt he would give good Sith.

Who knows, maybe he’ll be the guy who kills Han Solo…


  1. Terry says:

    Its too bad they couldn’t have chosen another director…. I was never a fan of Abrams produced shows/movies….. But at least Lucas already bombed the franchise with ep.1-3. Abrams doesn’t have to worry about keeping a high standard and ruining a franchise like he did Trek…

    • Stephen Bryce says:

      Yeah, Trek is so ruined that the last two movies actually made a good amount of money, and made the franchise popular again.

      Frigging grow up, would you please?

      • Terry says:

        Yes it is popular again. That I won’t deny. But we are all entitled to our own opinions and I’m not a fan of Abrams Trek. I’ve watched Star Trek my whole life and I loved the continuity of the original universe. I would have been ok with the alternate timeline if they had at least kept the ages of the crew members the same instead of just throwing a bunch of similar aged characters together. But I also understand that the new Trek movies are aimed at the newer generation… lots of flash, action and little substance. It doesn’t even feel like Trek to me. I would rather watch the fan films being produced some of which are excellent quality. ( New Voyages, Continues, Farragut, etc.) The only light I see at the end of the tunnel is that at least Abrams is a Star Wars fan so he might do better with this franchise.

      • Val says:

        Thats the problem these days. People seem to think just because a movie makes a lot of money it must be good. I miss the good ole days when you had to have a good story and great actors to make a great movie. Most of what comes out these days is absolute garbage.

    • Jonathon says:

      Couldn’t have said it better myself!