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Original Chewbacca Returning for 'Star Wars: Episode VII'

Sources confirm Peter Mayhew's return after the actor canceled a recent appearance at a convention 'due to filming'

April 8, 2014 10:07 AM ET
Peter Mayhew Chewbacca
Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca in 'Star Wars: Episode V'
Lucasfilms/courtesy Everett Collection

Another cast member from the original Star Wars trilogy is returning to a galaxy far, far away: Peter Mayhew will suit-up once again as Han Solo's trusted number two Wookiee, Chewbacca, for Lucasfilm and Disney's forthcoming Star Wars: Episode VII, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Sources confirmed Mayhew's turn in the new film, though speculation that the actor might reprise his role began when he canceled an appearance at the Comicpalooza convention in Texas "due to filming." Disney Studios chairman Alan Horn confirmed at the start of the month that Episode VII had begun filming and that most of the cast had been chosen.

Explore Chewbacca's Behind-the-Scenes 'Star Wars' Photos

Disney and Lucasfilm, however, have remained tightlipped about who exactly will appear in the much-anticipated film, which is being directed by J.J. Abrams. Open casting calls were held in the U.K., United States and online last fall, and there have also been reports that Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher will reprise their roles as Han Solo, Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia, though no one's offered definitive confirmation. We do know, however, that everyone's favorite droid, R2-D2, has been rebooted and is ready to go for Episode VII.

Star Wars: Episode VII is scheduled to hit theaters on December 18th, 2015. The movie was initially being written by Michael Arndt, though he was replaced by Abrams and Lucasfilm vet, Lawrence Kasdan. Along with the new movie, Marvel comics is slated to start publishing Star Wars comic books and graphic novels starting in 2015.

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