Latest 'Star Wars' Rumors Include Expanded 'Episode VII' Roles For Luke, Han & Leia Plus Michael Fassbender And Hugo Weaving

How about some juicy Star Wars rumors for your weekend? These come from The Hollywood Reporter, who say much has changed with Star Wars Episode VII since original screenwriter Michael Arndt left the project last year. Reportedly Arndt wanted the film to focus on the offspring of the original trilogy characters (Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia and Han Solo) while director J.J. Abrams wanted Episode VII to focus on those characters, keeping the offspring in the background until Episode VIII and Episode IX.

Meanwhile, while this shake up was going on, Abrams continued to take meetings with all kinds of actors. Pretty much anyone that's previously been reported (Benedict Cumberbatch, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael B. Jordan, etc.) took a meeting as well as new names Michael Fassbender, Adam Driver and Hugo Weaving.

The Hollywood Reporter posted this vast update on the project. Among their points is that, yes, Jesse Plemons is being looked at for a role.

Basically, Michael Arndt wanted the sequel trilogy to be focused on the younger offspring of Han, Leia and Luke, who each had supporting roles. Now, it seems, Abrams has flipped those ratios. If the rumors are true, Han, Luke and Leia will be the focus of this first new adventure, giving audiences one more chance to see them in all their glory. That would make Episode VII their send off before Episode VIII and IX would focus on the supporting characters introduced in VII. Among those on Arndt's side was George Lucas, but it was no longer his call, instead differing to Abrams and Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy.

According to THR, this radical change is why many of the actors we've heard in the past are no long in contention. Roles previously thought to be major are no longer major. One example is a 20-something year old in the script has been aged into their 40s. "Some characters have disappeared from the Arndt script and new ones are being drafted," THR said.

As for Fassbender, Driver and Weaving, their meetings have reportedly been aimed at this new version of the film and while there's no word on who Fassbender or Driver could potentially play, Weaving would supposedly be an Imperial commander.

Finally, THR reports Abrams is now looking for "a 20-something female actress who is either of mixed race or black. The rumor is that Obi-Wan Kenobi had a daughter or granddaughter." That's a rumor we've been hearing at /Film headquarters for a long time.

Where does this leave us? Pretty much nowhere. Abrams is still having meetings, Plemons is in the mix and hopefully things will be firmed up in the coming weeks before a big, public announcement. As a huge Star Wars fan though, I can't be the only one thinking the less Abrams asks of Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford in 2014, the better. I want them in the film, but they've had their time in the sun. It's time to pass the lightsaber.

What are you thoughts?