GRAND ADMIRAL THRAWN
He’s the best villain in the EU. Period. He might not fit with some of these other characters timeline-wise, but when you’re fan-casting potential villains for a STAR WARS: EPISODE VII, you have to tackle Admira Thrawn, who brought the New Republic to their knees in the Thrawn trilogy, and seeing HEIR TO THE EMPIRE come to the big screen has been a fan wet dream since it was published.
Thrawn is the only non-human (and clearly we need a lot more aliens/monsters in this trilogy) to achieve the status of Grand Admiral in the Empire, and he’s a brilliant strategist and tactician. He’s Napoleon and Hannibal with blue skin and red eyes and an unpronounceable name that would make Lovecraft proud (Mitth’raw’nuruodo). Even when he’s trying to kill and destroy your favorite characters, you can’t help but marvel at the guy’s machinations.
Who can take on this role? As with every other role in movie-dom, you have to mention Benedict Cumberbatch, but we should go older, and we shouldn’t need or want Khan and Thrawn to both be on his resume. I considered Michael Fassbender, because he has the magnetism for the role, which is way too lame a pun to even survive the editing process (Editor’s Note: I loved it). BLACK SWAN’s Vincent Cassel would be an intriguing choice; he’s got a very unique face built for villainy, and he’s succeeded at in the past. As with any villain I run down the tried and true list of Charles Dance, William Hurt, Willem Dafoe, and Cillian Murphy. William Hurt is probably my favorite of that batch here, and I can just imagine him smoldering up the bridge of the CHIMAERA. But, I can’t resist the rumor and the popular choice here. I just so want THIS to happen:
John Noble deserves massive heaps of respect and adoration for his performance on FRINGE, and he’d break movie screens with his portrayal of a villain in STAR WARS. The J.J. Abrams connection is there, he clearly would look good in blue, and it’s just too good to be true. Make this happen.