[Potential MILD SPOILERS for Episode VII ahead!]
We’re still a ways off from the time when we can reasonably expect some official information on Star Wars: Episode VII to be made available, but in the meantime the rumor mill is doing a pretty terrific job of stirring the pot on its own. Today’s batch of rumors involve the Episode VII characters played by Daisy Ridley – who is said to be portraying one of the protagonists (if not the protagonist) of the third Star Wars film trilogy – and Max von Sydow.
You might recall that Sydow was rumored to be playing Episode VII‘s main villain some time ago… and that could well be true, for all we know right now. However, according to Badass Digest‘s Devin Faraci – who previously gave us an intriguing rumor about who Gwendoline Christie (Game of Thrones) is playing in Episode VII – von Sydow’s character will at least be introduced as a friend of Ridley’s character – the latter being someone who is either named Kira or that’s “what they’re calling her on set.”
Badass Digest is also the source for what, right now, is generally considered to be the most plausible rumored Episode VII storyline, which begins with Luke Skywalker’s (Mark Hamill) lightsaber clutched in a dismembered hand, floating in space. Faraci says that a “blue alien” discovers the weapon and takes it a “salvage yard,” where Kira works for Sydow’s character – the latter of whom is described as “an old cyborg dude [who] maybe has dementia.”
… But as soon as that lightsbaber shows up, [Sydow] gets lucid. He recognizes it. He begins to talk about the old days, name drops a couple of Prequel Trilogy characters, even. And then, after Kira and the alien leave he makes a call to a mysterious figure. “It’s here,” he says. But who is he calling?
It would make sense for Sydow’s character to be used as a link to the past of the Star Wars universe pre-Episode VII. Besides potentially strengthening the connection between Episode VII and the upcoming Star Wars Rebels TV show, Sydow’s character (as he’s described in the Badass Digest report) could also provide another link to the Star Wars: Clone Wars TV series and prequel trilogy – in ways that expand upon what returning players such as Luke, Leia (Carrie Fisher), and Han (Harrison Ford) bring to the table, that is.
As to who that character is, well, by the sound of he seems more likely to be a member of the Old Republic and/or someone with a hidden knowledge of the Force (a parallel to Obi-Wan Kenobi in Episode IV, perhaps?), as opposed to a villain in hiding. One assumes that Sydow and Ridley live on Tatooine – the “desert planet” glimpsed in the first official Episode VII set video – which, in previous Star Wars movies, has proven to be an effective hiding place, so that might be a hint for why Sydow is hanging out there.
Speaking of familiar planets, Faraci has also made the following claim about a recent batch of Episode VII set photos that leaked online, depicting various space ships (X-Wing fighters, the Millennium Falcon) in a location where there was a fair amount of foliage growing over the docking bays and landing platforms.
You know all those shots from Greenham Common Air Base, with the X-Wing fighters and the Millenium Falcon? That’s a familiar location – it’s the Massassi Temple from the original Star Wars. Yup, they’re back on Yavin IV.
Ridley’s character, however, may reside on Tatooine, but her living quarters are far more surprising – namely, “an abandoned AT-AT” that has been knocked over. You might remember that some of the earliest leaked Episode VII set photos depicted what appeared to be the foot of an AT-AT walker in the film’s “desert planet” setting. (Note: AT-AT walkers are, in fact, all-terrain, so they could function as well on somewhere like Tatooine as they did on Hoth in Episode V.) As they say, if the boot fits…
This rumor also gels with the longtime claim that Ridley is playing the street-smart teen orphan “Rachel” described in the Episode VII official casting call. Similarly, the rumors about John Boyega (Attack the Block) and his Episode VII character point to him playing the young male lead in the casting call – a fellow referred to as “Thomas,” who at the beginning of the film is in need of some guidance – him being a stormtrooper and whatnot.
Are some/any of these Episode VII rumors truly accurate, though? Maybe, maybe not; so, as ever, take all this with a grain of salt and keep on having fun. This Star Wars rumor game is far from done being played, after all.
Star Wars: Episode VII opens in U.S. theaters on December 18th, 2015.