Since his first appearance in the original trilogy, Billy Dee Williams has been a mainstay of the ‘Star Wars’ community. Known for his role as Lando Calrissian, the veteran actor has appeared at many conventions and Star Wars Weekends over the years to meet legions of fans. He even voiced the character in ‘The Lego Movie,’ ‘The Cleveland Show,’ and ‘Robot Chicken.’ Williams actually returned to the role in an official capacity when Lando guest starred on an episode of ‘Star Wars Rebels’ earlier this year where the smooth talking space pirate actually won a high stakes card game for once. But will we get to see Calrissian on the big screen in the flesh any time soon? A new interview says that it’s a possibility.
At some point last year, we learned that Williams would not be joining Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford in ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens.’ However, the actor recently told Cinelinx that fans shouldn’t lose hope for an appearance from Lando in the sequel trilogy. After all, as he points out, the smuggler didn’t appear until the second film in the original trilogy:
“I have a feeling I’m going to show up. There’s nothing I can really discuss about it at this stage. People think of me as the original cast, but I didn’t come in until the second movie. I did ‘Empire’ and then I did ‘Return of the Jedi’, but I came in after everyone else was introduced… So I think they’re probably proceeding in that way. I can’t imagine them not bringing Lando back.”
With everyone that J.J. Abrams brought back from the original cast for the first chapter of a new tale in a galaxy far, far away, it would be a huge bummer for Billy Dee Williams to be left out. Sure, it’s good that the story is focusing on a new (and very diverse) set of heroes, but with the actor being such a mainstay of the franchise, it would be nice to see the new regime at Lucasfilm give Williams some love on the big screen, even if it was just in a cameo appearance. I mean, for all we know Lando could’ve gotten into some trouble after ‘Episode VI,’ but let’s hope that isn’t the case for now.
Would you like to see Billy Dee Williams play Lando Calrissian in Rian Johnson’s upcoming ‘Star Wars’ films? Are you surprised that J.J. Abrams didn’t include the character in his movie? And what do you think Lando has been up to in the years following ‘Return of the Jedi’? Share your thoughts and theories in the comment section.