Universal treasure Carrie Fisher, from 2005’s AFI Tribute to George Lucas.
Today’s casting announcement was indeed very welcome. Finally, we have a confirmed cast, or at least the biggest part of one. We have a group of familiar faces and new actors who come with glowing recommendations, and they’re not all white guys. (Just mostly.)
But there was one bit of fallout that we have mixed feelings about.
Where are the women?We have Carrie Fisher, of course. But of the seven new cast members there’s only one other woman joining her. Granted, Daisy Ridley could very well be playing Episode VII’s main character. She could be the axis the entire film revolves around. Or, she may not be. We don’t know, and they’re probably not going to tell us any time soon. And there could be other women in the cast but again: We’re not seeing them today. In any case, this is the core cast. The leads will be drawn out of this group – or so we’re led to assume.
I’m not the only one who noticed this, or remembered the casting call for two new female roles. And may still be? Though two out of eight isn’t much better, depending on the size of both roles. Three female characters is still only hitting the bare minimum. In addition to the virtual stream of comments on Twitter and Facebook and Tumblr, we have pieces from Annalee Newitz, Amy Ratcliffe, Gavia Baker-Whitelaw, Devin Faraci, Eliza Thompson, Julie Hammerle, Bonnie Burton, Rainbow Rowell and Tricia Barr. And, from back in February, Laura Hudson’s Leia is not enough.
But, you know, “be patient.”
We’ve had two trilogies with exactly one woman each taking the lead. We had the prequel trilogy, where, finally, there were enough women that they actually talked to each other sometimes. When their scenes weren’t cut, anyway. (Sorry, Padme’s mom and sister. Sorry, Mon Mothma.) Still, Padme talked to her handmaidens, to Shmi Skywalker, to Queen Jamillia, to Beru Whitesun. And remember: The Bechdal test is (again) the bare minimum, not any sort of ultimate measure.
Outside of the movies, we’ve embraced the addition of characters like Mara Jade, Jaina Solo, Ahsoka Tano and even newcomers Hera Syndulla and Sabine Wren, whose show hasn’t even aired yet. Two women in the Rebels cast? We were enthusiastic, even if there are still some bumps in the road.
“Be patient,” they say.
They don’t seem to realize that we have been patient. We’re here. We’re fans. We’re ready. We’ve been patient for 30 years. It’s just that now, there’s enough of us visible that you can’t ignore us when we speak up.
Here’s a real question for you: Why do we keep asking? It’s not because we enjoy this outrage, I’ll tell you that much. It’s because of decades of being ignored, disrespected, and of our contributions being constantly downplayed, our concerns brushed to the side. And if we don’t ask, if we go back to being “patient?” That’ll just give them more reason to go back to the status quo, no matter how many Katnisses there are.
I’m sorry this casting announcement, this moment we’ve all been waiting nearly two years for, has been clouded by complaints. But I’m not sorry for speaking up as to why. I just wish we didn’t have to.
StarWars.com has announced the official cast for Episode VII. Star Wars alumni Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, and Kenny Baker will be joined by John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, and Max von Sydow.
And that second new female role? They may still be looking, says The Hollywood Reporter.
Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford have both been spotted in London in recent days. And on Sunday, Peter Serafinowicz tweeted a photo of himself with Mark Hamill, saying “Met up with @HamillHimself in London today. I wonder why he’s here.”
Hamill also appears to be growing out a beard.
WHAT COULD IT MEAN? I kid, we totally know what it (probably) means.
Hamill hasn’t tweeted since the 18th, but Fisher poked fun at the rumor on Saturday: “So my do dog Gary has been spotted in London, but apparently without me. Who has he been seeing? Let me know if you have any clues.”
Mingle Media caught up with Carrie Fisher Saturday at the Backstage At The Geffen fundraiser. Naturally, they asked about Episode VII, but didn’t get very far: “I don’t know that I am. We’re not supposed to…”
She is, however, working on a new show that she’s thinking about debuting… in London.
According to /Film, Legit star Jim Jefferies told a radio show that Carrie Fisher told him she’s be in London for six months filming Episode VII. We last heard “six months” in regard to Mark Hamill per Latino Review, so take that as you will.
Fisher will be appearing on the new season of the FXX show.
J.J. Abrams said this weekend that Episode VII will begin filming in May; Now Carrie Fisher is telling TV Guide that she, Mark Hamill and Harrison Ford will start in March or April. (And yes, none of the actors have been officially confirmed yet, but that hasn’t stopped her before.) Maybe it’s a misquote for ‘spring,’ or maybe Episode VII isn’t a mystery box so much as a confusion box? Or they’re all going to tour Highclere Castle
Downton Abbey as team-building exercise? (via)
In any case: “I’d like to wear my old [cinnamon buns] hairstyle again — but with white hair,” Fisher also said. “I think that would be funny.”
Rumors. Ali Arikan says that there are rumblings that Episode VII will begin filming on April 22.
Original original trilogy. Jeremy Conrad at Furious Fanboys has four reasons we won’t be seeing the original trilogy theatrical cuts released anytime soon. Long story short: A complete restoration would be super expensive and the rights issues with 20th Century Fox.
It’s been a slow couple days on the rumor mill. Will it remain so through the holiday season, or will we psych ourselves up for something at the two-year mark on December 18th? In the meantime, here are a few inconclusive dribbles…
“It’s good to be in the mix for those conversations,” Michael B. Jordan said when asked about the various franchises he’s been rumored to be a part of (Star Wars, Fantastic Four, etc.) but he’s not confirming anything because he’s not stupid.
Rumors. Bryan Young and Bobby Roberts discuss last week’s big scriptwriting development on the latest Full of Sith. Seems like Bobby’s being hearing the same things as McWeeny and Faraci. They speak sense, so listen and calm yourselves.
Flashback. In the midst of all this, HuffPo’s Mike Ryan looks back at Leigh Brackett and her Empire Strikes Back draft. All this has happened before… And Tor digs up some of Carrie Fisher’s thoughts on Leia from the infamous beach blanket bingo issue of Rolling Stone.