Could Mark Hamill be ready to once again pick up his lightsaber for the upcoming Star Wars Sequel Trilogy? Well, in a recent interview with ET, Hamill seems to confirm that the prospects of him reprising Luke Skywalker are quite likely.
While the 2015 release of the yet-to-be-titled Star Wars: Episode VII has opened the floodgates of rumors, one narrative which carries a distinct ring of truth seems to surround the impending return of the Original Trilogy cast, reuniting fans with older versions of the characters set several years after the fall of the Galactic Empire in Return of the Jedi. This is especially so with the recent, yet-to-be-confirmed report of Harrison Ford being secretly locked-in and official for a return as Han Solo. Yet, the prospective return of Hamill as the character that is essentially the main protagonist of the entire mythos seems even more of an inevitability. Thus, Hamill does not seem to play coy when it comes to that possibility, as he candidly reveals that he is indeed in talks with the new Disney-sized Lucasfilm coalition.
"They're talking to us," he reveals. "George [Lucas] wanted to know whether we'd be interested. He did say that if we didn't want to do it, they wouldn't cast another actor in our parts – they would write us out. … I can tell you right away that we haven't signed any contracts. We're in the stage where they want us to go in and meet with Michael Arndt, who is the writer, and Kathleen Kennedy, who is going to run Lucasfilm. Both have had meetings set that were postponed -- on their end, not mine. They're more busy than I am."
While those talks don't seem to be taking place with a sense of urgency, it could very well be the case that the big brass are waiting for director, J.J. Abrams to finish things up with his current baby, Star Trek Into Darkness. Once the film hits on May 17 and Abrams has fulfilled all the ensuing creative and promotional obligations, the living envy of the sci-fi world will be able to turn his full attention to casting details and the shoot itself.
However, Hamill would be walking into this project with an ideal about where Luke Skywalker is in his life and how the film should come across.
Hamill has discussed in the past how George Lucas was intent on making a sequel trilogy and even just a few short months before the announcement last October of Disney's acquisition of Lucasfilm, the visionary sat down with Hamill and co-star, Carrie Fisher over dinner and allegedly pitched ideas. The discussion apparently had Hamill intrigued enough and left him with a notion about what to do with Luke and the gang over 30 years later.
"I said to George that I wanted to go back to the way it was, in the sense that ours was much more carefree and lighthearted and humorous – in my opinion, anyway. And another thing I'd want to make sure of is are we going to have the whole gang back? Is Carrie and Harrison and Billy Dee and Tony Daniels, everybody that's around from the original [returning]? I want to make sure that everybody's on board here, rather than just one. I guess I'll have to tune into your show to figure out who's on board."
Of course, now the people he would need to talk to are Kathleen Kennedy and J.J. Abrams. Nevertheless, the comments seem to be a slight dig at the overdone Prequel Trilogy of Lucas, which did seem to lose focus from the heart of the story amidst its own visual (and merchandising) grandiosity. In fact, on the new film's visual effects, Hamill comments:
"I hope they find the right balance of CGI with practical effects. I love props, I love models, miniatures, matte paintings -- I'm sort of old school. I think if you go too far in the direction of CGI it winds up looking like just a giant a video game, and that's unfortunate. … If they listen to me at all, it'll be, 'Lighten up and go retro with the way it looks.'"
Nevertheless, Hamill will likely jump on board, if anything, to cement his legacy with the franchise that made him a household name. He's hoping that legacy will see Luke as a wise old Jedi Master in this new post-Imperial world who finds himself an elder voice of reason amidst what will certainly be a new form of chaos.
"I'm assuming, because I haven't talked to the writers, that these movies would be about our offspring -- like my character would be sort of in the Obi-Wan range [as] an influential character. … When I found out [while making the original trilogy] that ultimate good news/bad news joke – the good news is there's a real attractive, hot girl in the universe; the bad news is she's your sister – I thought, 'Well, I'm going to wind up like Sir Alec [Guinness]. I'm going to be a lonely old hermit living out in some kind of desert igloo with a couple of robots.'"
Indeed, the post-Return of the Jedi time period is ripe with material from the Expanded Universe of Star Wars novels and comic books from which to pull for the new films. Yet, the new films will undoubtedly serve as a myth-infused atom bomb to be dropped on the loads of material destined to be rendered non-canon. Despite that, one would have to think that a fundamental framework will remain in place retaining some elements it depicted like a wise (and despite Hamill's musings, non-chaste) old Luke, his son, Ben Skywalker, and the tragedy-destined force-sensitive twin son and daughter of Han Solo and Princess Leia named Jaina and Jacen. (Pictured above.)
Regardless of what storylines get utilized, Hamill's return as Luke will certainly be a radical departure from the petulant reluctant teenage hero who calls your ship "a piece of junk" and brags about bulls-eying womp rats with his T-16. In essence, it will be the true realization of the character arc of this former moisture farmer, amidst all the new drama.