STAR WARS: EPISODE IX Begins Production; Mark Hamill & Carrie Fisher Confirmed To Return As Luke & Leia

Star Wars: Episode IX has officially begun production and Disney/Lucasfilm have now officially confirmed the cast of the trilogy capper, including the returns of both Mark Hamill & the late Carrie Fisher.

Star Wars: Episode IX has commenced production and principal photography will officially begin on August 1st.

Disney/Lucasfilm has also revealed its cast, which will return stars Daisy Ridley (Rey), Adam Driver (Kylo Ren), John Boyega (Finn), Oscar Isaac (Poe Dameron), Lupita Nyong’o (Maz Kanata), Domhnall Gleeson (General Hux), Kelly Marie Tran (Rose Tico), Joonas Suotamo (Chewbacca), and Billie Lourd (Lieutenant Connix). As for newcomers, Naomi Ackie (Lady Macbeth) and Richard E. Grant (Game of Thrones) have joined the ensemble cast in undisclosed roles. 

Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), Anthony Daniels (C-3PO), and Billy Dee Williams (Lando Calrissian) will also all return to reprise their iconic roles.

The late Carrie Fisher will appear in the film through previously unreleased footage that was shot for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Director J.J. Abrams said in a statement, “We desperately loved Carrie Fisher. Finding a truly satisfying conclusion to the Skywalker saga without her eluded us. We were never going to recast, or use a CG character. With the support and blessing from her daughter, Billie, we have found a way to honor Carrie’s legacy and role as Leia in Episode IX by using unseen footage we shot together in Episode VII.

5x Academy Award-winning composer John Williams, who has scored all eight of the previous films in the main saga, will return to score Episode IX as well.

Kathleen Kennedy, J.J. Abrams, and Michelle Rejwan will serve as producers.

On another note, the press release makes no mention of Golden Globe-winner Keri Russell (The Americans; Mission: Impossible 3), who was previously said to be in talks for a key part, but rest assured, she will appear in the movie. Variety's Justin Kroll has confirmed that her deal just closed today.

Star Wars: Episode IX hits theaters December 20, 2019
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