Five young actors audition for Star Wars: Episode VII

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 13 March 2014
J.J. Abrams

J.J. Abrams

Up-and-coming actors Ed Speleers, John Boyega, Jesse Plemons, Matthew James Thomas and Ray Fisher are the frontrunners for the lead role in 'Star Wars: Episode VII'

Five young actors have auditioned for the lead in 'Star Wars: Episode VII'.

'Downton Abbey' actor Ed Speleers, 'Attack the Block' star John Boyega, Friday Night Lights' Jesse Plemons, in addition to theatre actors Matthew James Thomas and Ray Fisher, are said to be on director J.J. Abrams' shortlist to play a Jedi apprentice, according to

The casting delay is apparently due to executives debating whether they want an actor of a different ethnicity from the previous Caucasian leads.

Abrams is expected to cast a host of famous faces in supporting roles, including the franchise's original stars Harrison Ford and Mark Hamill.

'Girls' star Adam Driver is reportedly close to signing to star as a villainous Darth Vader-inspired character in the film.

The highly-anticipated sci-fi adventure was originally thought to centre on Han Solo and Princess Leia's kids, however, Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan's recent rewrite of Michael Arndt's script has allegedly altered the focus.

Filming is scheduled to start at London's Pinewood Studios in April for a December 2015 release date.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

  • 5 stars
  • 2015
  • US
  • 2h 16min
  • 12A
  • Directed by: JJ Abrams
  • Written by: Lawrence Kasdan, J.J. Abrams, Michael Arndt
  • Cast: John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Max von Sydow, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, Kenny Baker
  • UK release: 17 December 2015

From the ashes of the Empire, the villainous First Order rises up to destroy Luke Skywalker (Hamill) – but where is he? Fans can rejoice: Episode VII is sensational and surprisingly emotional, with a finely-crafted script and effects that never overpower the performances. Star Wars is back in a big way.

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