'Star Wars' Plans Open Casting in the U.K.: Report

Producers said to be seeking unknowns for 'Episode VII' roles

Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford in 'Star Wars; Episode IV - A New Hope.'
Everett / Everett Collection
Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford in 'Star Wars; Episode IV - A New Hope.'
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The producers of Star Wars are seeking to cast two lead roles in the franchise's upcoming sequel through open casting calls in the U.K. and Ireland, according to the BBC. The auditions, for a teenaged girl and a young man, are set to happen later this week in London, Dublin, Glasgow and other cities.

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The BBC cites a casting notice posted by the Twitter account @UKOpenCall whose bio touts "open auditions for a new Disney movie." Disney last year purchased Lucasfilm, which hasn't commented, though descriptions of the characters sought for Star Wars: Episode VII resemble those leaked online earlier this year.

According to @UKOpenCall, these are descriptions of the roles:

"Rachel – was quite young when she lost her parents. With no other family, she was forced to make her way in a tough, dangerous town. Now 17, she has become street smart and strong. She is able to take care of herself using humor and guts to get by." The suitable actress should be over the age of 16, according to the announcement, but look young enough to play a 17- or 18-year-old. She must be beautiful, smart and athletic. All ethnicities are welcome.

"Thomas – has grown up without a father's influence. Without the model of being a man, he doesn't have the strongest sense of himself. Despite this, he is smart, capable and shows courage when it is needed. He can appreciate the absurdities in life and understands you can't take life too seriously." The actor for this role should be at least over the age of 18 and passable as someone between the ages of 19 and 23. He, too, must be handsome, smart and athletic.

Shooting for the film is scheduled to begin in spring 2014 to accommodate Disney's timetable for releasing three sequels and two spinoffs starting in 2015. Casting for the film has raised speculations about the return of the original cast (something Harrison Ford neither confirms nor denies) and maybe a role for Daniel Day-Lewis. Amid the rumors, director J.J. Abrams has promised films that will feel "emotional" and "authentic." 

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