Sources have told Variety that actress Keri Russell is currently in talks to join the cast of director J.J. Abrams’ Episode IX. The Hollywood Reporter and Entertainment Weekly have also received word of this news from their sources as well (EW’s sources say talks are in the final stages and should be officially completed soon). While the name of the character she is vying for is obviously not known at this time, Variety’s sources say the role Russell is up for will be involved in some action-heavy fight sequences, a role Russell has been successful playing in previous films.
Sources tell Variety that J.J. Abrams is in early talks with the “Felicity” alum to join “Star Wars: Episode IX,” which Abrams is writing and directing. Russell and Abrams last collaborated on 2006’s “Mission: Impossible III.”
The role calls for action-heavy fight scenes and Russell has shown her ability to perform tough stunts in projects like FX’s “The Americans,” “Mission: Impossible,” and “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.”
Abrams and Lucasfilm execs had been meeting with several actresses for the role for the past two months and settled on Russell right before the Fourth of July holiday. Abrams will likely cast two more actors by the time the film begins production at the end of the month. John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, and Adam Driver are all expected to return.
We wait for an announcement to arrive soon from Lucasfilm confirming this Episode IX casting as filming for the last installment in the Skywalker saga in set to kick off later this month.