TORONTO, ON – SEPTEMBER 09: Actress Emma Thompson of ‘The Children’s Act’ attends The IMDb Studio Hosted By The Visa Infinite Lounge at The 2017 Toronto International Film Festival at Bisha Hotel & Residences on September 8, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Rich Polk/Getty Images for IMDb)
3. Emma Thompson
We all want Emma Thompson in Star Wars, and it’s evident in light of recent headlines. Last week, Wired hosted Emma Thompson and Mindy Kaling on “Autocomplete Interviews,” when the question of “is emma thompson in star wars” was tossed around. Thompson showed quite a bit of surprise toward why everyone thinks she is in the movies, proclaiming:
"“My agent actually said to the last people who were making the last Star Wars—I get very confused because obviously there’s spinoffy (sic) things—… he said, ‘she’d be really interested in Star Wars,’ because I actually really like Star Wars, and they said ‘No’.”"
She then states bluntly: “I’m not in Star Wars because they don’t want me to be in Star Wars.”
It’s a slight jab at Lucasfilm, but rightfully so if this is to be believed, because it’s a missed opportunity when you don’t cast Thompson, an Academy Award winning actress for her role in 1993’s Howard’s End, in your movie.
Her tenured career and personality would be a fitting addition to the Star Wars universe. Kaling goes on to say Thompson would best suit the role of a forest-dwelling mentor who appears to a young Jedi that has lost the will to live. Although it is said jokingly, it’s actually spot-on to what I had in mind for Thompson.
In the prequel films, male figureheads inopportunely dominate every scene involving the Jedi Council while the female Jedi Masters, such as Depa Billaba and Adi Gallia, recede into the background as placeholders.
In the new era of Star Wars films, there’s an opportunity to step away from this old anecdote and put a female lead into a role akin to Yoda or Palpatine. This is where I see Thompson taking center stage as an influential Jedi or politician (potentially of the Old Republic).
Thompson has proven she has the acting chops, and her portrayal of Professor Sybil Trelawney in the Harry Potter franchise proves she can fully embrace fantasy or science fiction story elements.