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Star Wars Episode VII’s Sith Lord is Benedict Cumberbatch!

Benedict Cumberbatch

More news on the rumor that broke yesterday that Benedict Cumberbatch was joining the cast of J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars Episode VII.  Badass Digest has been able to dig up exactly what he’s in the running for in the next Star Wars installment: the new Sith Lord.

The site contends that this Sith will be a major, major character whose arc would run the entire VII-IX trilogy.  It also confirms that this is the reason the actor suddenly dropped out of Guillermo del Toro‘s Crimson Peak.

This has not been confirmed by Disney or Abrams, but Abrams denied Cumberbatch was Khan right up until Star Trek Into Darkness was released so an official announcement of his casting may be forthcoming, but details may be scarce.

If this dovetails with the earlier reports we’ve received on the film’s villain from Latino Review, Cumberbatch would be playing Emperor Palpatine‘s secret apprentice that he was grooming as a contingency plan that the Skywalker crisis went sideways (which-from his point-it really did).  Ian McDiarmid would be reprising his role as Palpatine in a Force ghost form, likely serving as a mentor to this apprentice who, 30 years later, most likely has become an extremely powerful Sith.

This would be utterly fantastic.  The success of the hidden apprentice plot was going to depend on the villain and the actor.  They have one of the best actors out there if they cast Cumberbatch.  All of these rumors are extremely exciting and encouraging.  Stay tuned, because we’re going to get more and more of these pouring in.

UPDATE 9/4/2013: The New York Daily News is citing Cumberbatch’s publicist as stating he has NOT taken the role but CinemaBlend had a very interesting take on that denial over on their site.  I’m a grown man typing about who will be the next Sith Lord at 1:22 a.m. on a work night.  It’s fun just to even think about this!

Star Wars Episode VII Poster

 

Fan Made Poster by Lyndon Berresford

Star Wars Episode VII’s Latest Casting Rumor is Benedict Cumberbatch!

Benedict Cumberbatch, Star Trek Into Darkness

This seems almost too good to be true.  We all know that 2013 has been the year we all got Cumberbatched upside the head (that sounds incredibly dirty somewhow), even those of us who already knew and loved him from Sherlock.  Holmes….Khan….Smaug….and now….Star Wars?  The man is a geek machine.

This is coming from Film Chronicles, where they say that it is all but a done deal that Cumberbatch is joining the film, though in what capacity we can only guess.  I can’t decide if I would want him to be Palpatine’s apprentice more or the new face of the Jedi Order.  He can a freaking droid for all I care as long as we get some Cumberbatch in our Star Wars.

A reason this does sound plausible is that last week, with little explanation, Cumberbatch suddenly dropped out of Guillermo del Toro‘s Crimson Peak.  that movie will be filming in February 2014.  Star Wars Episode VII starts principal photograph a few weeks prior.  He also has a prior working relationship with JJ Abrams from Star Trek Into Darkness and Abrams likes to reuse people.  It is, at this point just a rumor, but it is an AWESOME rumor.

Star Wars Episode VII will take place 30 years after Return of the Jedi (putting Luke and Leia at roughly 52 and Han at 62 just as reference points).  We’ve already gotten leaks about the return of Emperor Palpatine and Obi-Wan Kenobi.  The tsunami of casting rumors and news I’ve been predicting is starting to crest.  LET IT RAIN!  Production starts mid-January 2014 for a holiday 2015 release.

Star Wars Episode VII Poster
Fan Made Poster by Lyndon Berresford