Star Wars: The Force Awakens didn’t just call back to the original trilogy. It sprinkled some major cameos into the movie. Did you catch ’em all?
Yes. Ewan McGregor (the prequel trilogy’s Obi-Wan Kenobi) was in The Force Awakens — or, at least, his voice was. And there’s a snippet of Alec Guinness there, too!
This amazing nugget of info was revealed via Collider. McGregor’s voice was used in Rey’s dream sequence, and J.J. Abrams explains:
The idea of the voices was, we wanted the audience to feel – but not necessarily be presented right in your face — this idea that familiar, Force-strong voices were connecting with her. At least as well as they could… You do hear a little bit of Yoda. You hear Luke yelling out, ‘Nooo!’ from that moment in Empire. And you hear Obi-Wan at the end say, ‘Rey, these are your first steps.’… Here’s the cool part. We asked Ewan McGregor to come in and do the line. And he was awesome and we were very grateful. He was incredibly sweet and handsome, and all that stuff. Then he rode off on his motorcycle. Literally the coolest voice over actor ever.
Wow. Who’d have thought we’d ever be nostalgic for the prequel trilogy?
On Alec Guinness (the original Obi-Wan), Abrams reveals that the word “Afraid” is in fact part of Guinness’ original performance. “They cut it, and you hear the performance – he’s saying it the way I would have begged Alec Guinness to have said it. It is so crazy perfect. So when you hear Obi-Wan talk to Rey it is both Alec Guinness and Ewan McGregor doing the voice,” says Abrams.
Finally, listen for the bit of Yoda that also snuck in there. Frank Oz recorded a number of new lines for the film, some of which were used in the flashback.
James Bond, now a Stormtrooper
Another cool cameo, which you may have noticed, was James Bond actor Daniel Craig.
Before the movie premiered, Craig had hinted about maybe being a Stormtrooper (though he subsequently tried to throw us off the trail).
But it turns out he had rather a pivotal role: Daniel Craig was the Stormtrooper whom Rey managed to control with the Force when she was held captive!
Not only has this been confirmed, but it’s quite obvious if you listen closely to the way he delivers his lines. The Hypable staff members discuss this at length on the Hype Podcast’s The Force Awakens special.
Other exciting cameos
Did you spot Thomas Brodie-Sangster, of Game of Thrones and The Maze Runner fame, as First Order Petty Officer Thanisson?
Simon Pegg was in The Force Awakens too, in a more substantial role — but you probably didn’t notice him at all. He was Unkar Plutt, the one who buys parts from Rey in exchange from meager food supplies.
A number of original Star Wars actors showed up, too: Warwick Davis (an original Ewok) also appeared in Maz Kanata’s castle, as “Wollivan.” Actors Tim Rose and Mike Quinn reprised their roles as Admiral Ackbar and Nien Nunb, respectively.
Lost fans will recognize Ken Leung, and of course J.J. Abrams brought back Greg Grunberg (who shows up in everything Abrams does).
And finally, Carrie Fisher’s real-life daughter Billie Lourd also turned up, as Lieutenant Connix — complete with the Princess Leia hairdo!
What cameos did you spot in Star Wars: The Force Awakens?