By now just about everyone on Earth knows that Mark Hamill’s role in “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” was a cameo at best, with Luke Skywalker appearing at the climax of the movie to set up the next adventure, “Star Wars: Episode VIII.”
The fact that Hamill played such a small role in the movie took fans by surprise, but they weren’t the only ones. Speaking at Star Wars Celebration Europe Friday (July 15), Hamill admitted he was expecting to be a bigger player in “The Force Awakens.” He didn’t take his reduced part as an insult, though.
“I wasn’t insulted. I thought it was a really great surprise, but I don’t think they prepared me correctly,” he says.
When the offer for “The Force Awakens” came around, the actor dove into a heavy training regimen to get in shape for Skywalker’s grand return to the big screen.
“‘By the way, you know all that working out where you lost all the weight? You’re going to turn and remove your hood’,” he jokes.
In fact, it wasn’t until Hamill got a copy of the finished script that he realized when he would pop up.
“What’s the first words in the crawl?” he remembers. “‘Luke Skywalker has vanished.’ I said, ‘Ooo, this is going to be good.’”
Of course keeping his role under wraps was another layer of the secrecy that surrounds the “Star Wars” franchise, which Hamill calls “out of control,” but for good reason.
“They’re not doing it to annoy you, they just want the surprise to be in the movie theater, not the Internet,” he says. “It’s for your viewing pleasure we do this.”
That secrecy extends to the upcoming “Episode VIII,” which Hamill says he’s contractually barred from talking about in any great detail. All he would share was that he’s currently looping dialogue for the movie that claims that some of the lines in the next film could blow “may the Force be with you” right out of the water. So at the very least, you know Luke is going to speak the next time you see him.
For what its worth, Hamill also confirmed one particular “Force Awakens” rumor. Back in July 2014, Birth.Movies.Death reported that the movie would open with a shot of Luke’s severed hand floating through space, clutching the lightsaber.
While that moment never made it into the movie, Hamill says it definitely was in the script at one point. It’s a shame something like that got cut, as it would have made a striking visual to kick off the new movie. Plus, as Hamill points out, that would put him in the first and last scene of the movie.