Dream casting the Star Wars saga: Conan Stevens as Chewbacca
There are two requirements necessary to play Chewbacca: 1) You have to be able to make that sound he makes, and 2) you have to be really tall. And honestly, I’m not sure #1 is terribly important since it can’t be difficult to dub a signature Chewbacca roar over a shot of an open mouth.
The height thing is vital, though. Peter Mayhew, who played the role in the original films, was 7’2”. That is very tall. At 7’1”, actor and bodybuilder Conan Stevens doesn’t quite match him, but the height difference is small enough so as not to be distracting.
Plus, Stevens has other things to recommend him. He’s made a habit of playing powerful, intimidating characters like Bolg in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane in Game of Thrones. Chewbacca is generally a friendly creature, but as Han informs us in Star Wars, Wookies are known to tear arms out of people’s sockets when they lose at space chess, so he’s got a little edge to him. Stevens might be able to bring some of that danger to the role, assuming it’ll come through the costume.
Speaking of that, I guess there’s a third requirement to playing Chewbacca: you have to be willing to wear that huge furry suit. It’s probably uncomfortably hot in there, but if an actor is being paid Star Wars money, I bet it’ll be worth it.
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