Star Wars HoloNet Digest #28: August 28 – September 4, 2013


Eric Logo Hologram

Artwork courtesy of Joshua Stolte

Welcome back to the Star Wars HoloNet Digest, a weekly feature where I bring you a recap of the latest news from the world of Star Wars. Whether it’s an Episode VII rumor or a noteworthy author interview, you’ll find it here. Let’s check the HoloNet and see what happened in the past week.

It was a light week for Star Wars news, so let’s kick things off with some interesting Episode VII rumors. The first one comes from the New York Times. Wait, just kidding. It’s Latino Review, yet again. They are claiming that Alex Pettyfer (Magic Mike) and Rachel Hurd-Wood (Peter Pan) auditioned for roles in Star Wars Episode VII. They further claim that Hurd-Wood auditioned for the role of Han and Leia’s daughter, and they also briefly note that Ryan Gosling “has declined” to play Luke Skywalker’s son, something they previously reported. Their report also says that “there is a major casting news … dropping very soon via Lucasfilm.”

A few days later, another site, Film Chronicles, dropped an even bigger rumor: Benedict Cumberbatch has been cast in Episode VII. Film Chronicles, which Bleeding Cool described as a respectable source of content, noted that Cumberbatch recently dropped out of Guillermo Del Toro’s movie Crimson Peak, production on which will start around the same time as Episode VII. Cumberbatch previously worked with J.J. Abrams on Star Trek Into Darkness, where he played the villain, and has a starring role as the title character on the hit BBC show Sherlock. It’s worth pointing out that I heard this same rumor last week from someone with strong industry connections. On the other hand, Variety’s Marc Graser doesn’t believe that this rumor is true. Cumberbatch’s representative denied that this casting rumor was accurate, but did so in a way that nonetheless left the door open for Cumberbatch’s involvement. We’ll just have to wait and see!

If you’re a fan of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, you may want to head over to Del Rey’s Star Wars Books Facebook page this afternoon at 3:00 pm ET. They will be holding a Q&A with TCW star James Arnold Taylor, who recently lent his voice to a promo for Del Rey’s latest EU novel, Star Wars: Kenobi by John Jackson Miller. In addition to The Clone Wars, Taylor is known for his work on the TV show Johnny Test (where he voices the title character) and the Ratchet & Clank video games (he voices Ratchet). He is also the official voice of Fred Flintstone. Yabba-Dabba-Do not miss this live chat with Taylor on Facebook at 3pm ET.

And finally, a light-hearted tidbit. John Williams was conducting an orchestra at the Hollywood Bowl last Friday when he took the opportunity to make a joke about Star Wars Episode VII. “I’m going to play you some early Episode VII stuff,” Williams said, according to IGN’s Eric Goldman. “The current title of this piece is ‘The scene where Luke’s son is decapitated.’” This isn’t news. It isn’t a rumor. It isn’t an insider report. It’s just the composer of the most anticipated film in at least a decade toying with an audience that he knows is dying to hear something, anything about that movie. Kudos to Mr. Williams for having some fun with the atmosphere of speculation.

And that’ll do it for this week. Yes, it was quiet one. I’m sure some big rumor or announcement will drop just as this HoloNet Digest “goes to press,” and if it does, you’ll hear about it right here next week.

Eric Geller is a college student majoring in political science whose interests include technology, journalism, and of course Star Wars. He reviews The Clone Wars TV series and manages social media for Star Wars fan site TheForce.Net. He also co-hosts The ForceCast podcast. He is originally from the Washington, D.C. area.