It's really no longer any kind of a secret that plans for Star Wars Episode VII will see Luke, Leia and Han returning, at least for a little bit. Harrison Ford was rumoured to have signed on, though we've also heard whispers that he's definitely going to wait to read the script, or at least something detailed, before he'll put pen to paper.
Also pending are Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill, the latter of whom has updated Entertainment Tonight on the ongoing negotiations:
They're talking to us. George [Lucas] wanted to know whether we'd be interested. He did say that if we didn't want to do it, they wouldn't cast another actor in our parts - they would write us out. ? I can tell you right away that we haven't signed any contracts. We're in the stage where they want us to go in and meet with Michael Arndt, who is the writer, and Kathleen Kennedy, who is going to run Lucasfilm. Both have had meetings set that were postponed -- on their end, not mine. They're more busy than I am.Oh, making Star Wars ain't easy. I'm glad I'm not Kathleen Kennedy, I can tell you that.
It sounds as though, so far at least, face-to-face contact has been limited to George Lucas, but further negotiations have been ongoing otherwise. E-mails to agents and the like.
The rest of the interview has some good value quotes from Hamill, like this one about where Luke Skywalker would be these days:
I'm assuming, because I haven't talked to the writers, that these movies would be about our offspring - like my character would be sort of in the Obi-Wan range, an influential character. ? When I found out that ultimate good news/bad news joke ? the good news is there's a real attractive, hot girl in the universe; the bad news is she's your sister ? I thought, 'Well, I'm going to wind up like Sir Alec. I'm going to be a lonely old hermit living out in some kind of desert igloo with a couple of robots.'Alec Guinness ended up living in a desert igloo with a couple of robots? Talk about life imitating art. And so ironic, considering his reputed disdain for Lucas' movies.
Hamill's keen to see more than "the key trio" back for the sequels too, which is nice of him.
Another thing I'd want to make sure of is are we going to have the whole gang back? Is Carrie and Harrison and Billy Dee and Tony Daniels, everybody that's around from the original [returning]? I want to make sure that everybody's on board here, rather than just one.And they could have a right old knees up. Except Anthony Daniels - I don't think those knees bend at all.
Every time I'm reminded that Michael Arndt is writing this film I'm very happy indeed. Roll on 2015. Or 16. Maybe 17. You can't rush The Abrams.
Thanks to The Force for the ET link.