Recasting the Star Wars saga: Michael B. Jordan as Captain Quarsh Panaka
Like Sio Bibble, Quarsh Panaka is a background character. He turns up as another one of Amidala’s advisers in The Phantom Menace, defends her in a few firefights, and shows himself out. Cast correctly, he’ll be a detail that makes the world seem richer. Cast incorrectly, he could be an irritating distraction.
Casting Michael B. Jordan in the role would be a smart way to make the most of it. Panaka is the captain of Queen Amidala’s guard. He’s a soldier who takes part in a couple of battle scenes, so whoever plays him will have to have some physical presence. Jordan has proven that he has the physicality to pull off that kind of acting—see his performance as Vince Howard in Friday Night Lights or Adonis Johnson in Creed for proof. For his sake and ours, we can all pretend that the recent Fantastic Four movie never happened. No one came out of that one looking good.
Jordan has plenty of acting ability, too, something he showed in his starring role in Fruitvale Station. If anything, Jordan is overqualified for a minor role like Typho, but he’s also good enough to know when to not draw attention to himself.
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