Movies/TV Star Wars

What if? Star Wars Casting That Almost Was…

When discussing, dissecting, and debating movies, casting is often overlooked or at minimum, undervalued. However, finding the “right” person for a role can make the difference between the film being good or legendary.  There’s no better example of this fact than to explore what could have been with a few of our beloved characters from Star Wars.

Han Solo

Who could have piloted the Millennium Falcon: Among others – Burt Reynolds, Al Pacino, Kurt Russell, Nick Nolte, and Christopher Walken (insert More Cowbell joke here).

The end result: There is literally no one else who could capture the essence of Han Solo better than Harrison Ford.  They have become synonymous with each other over the years – safe to say, the right call was made.

Leia Organa

Who could have worn the golden bikini: Jodie Foster

The end result: Carrie Fisher beat out the competition and secured her rightful place in the Star Wars universe. I’m sure Jodie would given a solid performance, but Carrie perfectly embodied the “you call this a rescue, I’ll save myself” spirit of Leia. Plus, Jodie was only 14 when A New Hope was released…even for a half-witted, scruffy-looking nerf-herder like Han Solo that’s a little too young.

Anakin Skywalker

Actors who could have been Obi-Wan’s apprentice: Leonardo DiCaprio or Christian Bale.

The end result: Hayden Christensen won the part and has borne the brunt of the criticism for the oft-ridiculed prequels. You can easily argue both DiCaprio and Bale ended up better off for having not been associated with the prequels. Still, this one is rather intriguing – would a stellar performance from either of these actors have elevated the prequels?

It’s always fascinating to hear what could have been with these casting decisions. We’ll take a look at other What If scenarios in future posts.

Photo Credit:  By Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America (Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill & Harrison Ford) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

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