Now that J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: Episode VII has an official cast and is actually filming in the deserts around Abu Dhabi, speculation and wonder has turned from who the hell will be in this movie to who the hell will be the main character and what will the story be? The latest rumor says the main focus of the new adventure in that far, far away galaxy, will be Attack the Block star John Boyega.
The Boyega tidbit is included in report over at Latino-Review, and though it obviously isn’t official, the news is solid enough from their sources that they’re down to put it out there in the world. Little more than one bullet point on a list, the report states that Boyega’s still unnamed character “isn’t a Jedi or a Padawan at the beginning of the movie.” Notice it says at the beginning of the movie, implying that status could change over time. They continue to say, “he’s the one that has the story arc that brings him into Star Wars’ greater universe. It has echoes of Luke’s arc in A New Hope.”
We’ve heard rumblings that Han Solo will play a big part, even to the point where some reports have called Harrison Ford a co-lead. That makes sense when you consider other reports that said Girls star Adam Driver, another new face in the franchise, will play Han and Leia’s (Carrie Fisher) son who has been lured away by the Dark Side of the Force, and the action will revolve around the attempts to rescue him.
If either this or the Boyega reports are true, that doesn’t mean they’re mutually exclusive, there’s ample room for this storyline to play out and involve his character as well. My theory has always been that this movie will use the returning players like Ford, Fisher, and Mark Hamill to introduce us to the next generation, who will form the core of the subsequent Episode movies. From what we’ve heard thus far, they could easily be setting up an extended conflict between the light side of the Force (Boyega) and the Dark (Driver). This idea is total rampant speculation on my part, but it sounds plausible. We’ll have to wait and see.
The nugget about Boyega’s role in Episode VII isn’t the only thing of note contained in this report. One says that, even though more than 30 years have gone buy, there is no “New Republic” at the beginning of the film—again they use the phrase “at the beginning,” which may or may not mean anything. Another says that there is Boba Fett-looking armor around, though it seems unlikely that it is his. What that means—clones, other Mandalorians?—remains to be seen.
The most interesting piece, however, states that “There will be a female villain,” which their sources say is likely to be Sith. If Driver’s character is indeed lured away, it could very well be due to her interference. You have to wonder if this means that one of the recent female additions to the cast—12 Years A Slave’s Lupita Nyong’o and Game of Thrones’ Gwendoline Christie—could be hanging out in the shadows.
We have also heard reports that Max Von Sydow will play a villain—referenced in the rumored working title of The Ancient Evil—and like before, this report doesn’t necessarily preclude the other. Perhaps he’s the master and whoever the female villain turns out to be will be an apprentice. It wouldn’t be the first time Star Wars has used the teacher/student dynamic on either side of the Force, and if there is a younger generation, it would jive with the idea of setting up a longer, extended conflict to play out over the course of multiple films.
Odds are we’ll have to wait until the movie actually opens to confirm or deny any of this, but it sure is fun to wonder about. Star Wars: Episode VII opens everywhere December 18, 2015.