terminator genisys matt smith

Last year, Variety reported that former Doctor Who and The Crown actor Matt Smith had joined the cast of J.J. AbramsStar Wars: Episode 9 in a “key role.” But Smith was never included in any of the official Lucasfilm press releases about the final Skywalker saga movie, and now the English actor has denied that he’s involved with the sci-fi sequel. Read his comments below.

Smith sat down with The L.A. Times for an article that largely focused on  several of his other projects, but there’s a brief aside in which the writer outright says that Smith is not in the upcoming Star Wars movie and provides a quote from the actor himself:

“As far as I can tell, I’m definitely not.”

Again, Lucasfilm never confirmed Smith was involved in the first place, so it makes sense that he’s not in the new movie after all. There are any number of reasons for something like this: negotiations could have fallen through, his potential role could have been written out of the movie during a rewrite, etc. At first, we were wondering if maybe Smith was in contention for the part that ended up going to Richard E. Grant since they’re both tall English actors, but Grant had already been confirmed when Variety’s initial report about Smith came out, so that theory is busted.

But this is a Star Wars movie, and one directed by the master of secrecy J.J. Abrams. If Abrams hadn’t openly lied about Benedict Cumberbatch’s role as Khan in Star Trek Into Darkness, I’d gladly take all of these announcements at face value, but I have to admit there’s a tiny part of me that’s just slightly suspicious. I suppose there’s an infinitesimally small chance that Smith might still be in this movie, possibly as some sort of surprise reveal. That could explain Lucasfilm not putting him on the official cast list.

Ultimately, I believe Smith when he says he’s not in the film. Abrams has never gone so far into the mystery box that he’s orchestrated an elaborate effort to convince the audience that an actor isn’t in a movie, and I don’t think he’d start now. Mostly. Let’s just say that when December 20, 2019 rolls around and if Matt Smith pops up in one scene as a potential new franchise villain or something, I won’t gasp aloud in the theater. But to preserve what remains of all of our sanities, let’s all assume the actor is telling the truth.

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