As with any highly anticipated project, countless rumors about Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker emerged ahead of the film's release, which included reports that Matt Smith would be involved in the endeavor, only for him to be absent from the theatrical release. Given the film's many reveals and the questions fans have had about the galaxy far, far away in the two years since the film's release, Smith hasn't shared many details about the truth of those rumors, yet he recently confirmed he did have multiple meetings with Lucasfilm and the potential part would have brought with it some game-changing revelations.
When Josh Horowitz from the Happy Sad Confused podcast asked Smith if his involvement with the film ever resulted in filming scenes, Smith confirmed, "No, I didn't. We were close to me being in it, but then it just never quite happened. I think the thing they were thinking of me for, eventually the part became obsolete and they didn't need it and so I never got to be in Star Wars. There we are."
Remember those reports that Matt Smith was going to be in THE RISE OF SKYWALKER? He told me his role was a big deal, representing “a big shift in the history of the [STAR WARS] franchise.”— Josh Horowitz (@joshuahorowitz) November 3, 2021
WHO WAS HE GOING TO PLAY?!
Full video chat at https://t.co/e84WokCDhq pic.twitter.com/JGKiwPSba9
Given that he didn't film any scenes, Horowitz then asked if the actor could share any details about the role, with Smith pointing out, "I could not possibly say, but it was a pretty groovy thing. It was a really groovy part and concept. It was a big thing, it was a big story detail. Like, a transformative Star Wars story detail, but it never quite got over the line."
With the first trailer for the film confirming the return of Palpatine, many theories regarding Smith's potential role circled around a connection to Palpatine. While audiences did see the descendants of Palpatine, Smith largely played coy about his character being connected to the character, and noted the impact the potential role would have had on the franchise.
"It was a big ... shift in the history of the franchise," Smith admitted. "No, there was no costume, there were a couple of meetings to talk about it."
Based on these comments, it sounds as though the character was cut from the narrative entirely as opposed to another actor taking over the role, as there wasn't a character introduced in the sequel that had such major ramifications for the rest of the series.
He isn't ruling out a return to Star Wars entirely, though, as he pointed out, "Maybe I can come back, you never know."
Stay tuned for details on the future of the Star Wars series.
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