Those who have seen the new Star Wars film will have heard all about new actors Daisy Ridley, John Boyega and Oscar Isaac. They’ll be aware that the original films’ trio – Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill and Harrison Ford – have returned for The Force Awakens. Owl-eared listeners may even be aware that Ewan McGregor and Alec Guinness’ voices can be heard in Episode VII – but what about the other people who popped up? Because the film’s filled with faces recognisable from various media – and here are 19 of the best.
1. Mark Stanley (Game of Thrones) – Knight of Ren
One of many castmembers flown in from the fictional land of Westeros, Mark Stanley was Game of Thrones‘ Grenn, a member of the Night’s Watch and a staunch defender of The Wall. You don’t see his face in The Force Awakens, and that’s because he’s one of the Knights of Ren – the guys standing around Kylo Ren in Rey’s vision. Presumably we’ll be seeing more of him in the next film.
2. Warwick Davis (Harry Potter) – Wollivan
Both a Ricky Gervais collaborator and Harry Potter‘s Professor Flitwick, Warwick Davis was actually also in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, the 1983 film with all the teddybear people, or Ewoks. Davis played one of these creatures, called Wicket – the first Ewok Princess Leia comes into contact with on Endor. In the new film, he was in costume as Wollivan, one of the patrons at Maz Kanata’s cantina. He spins round when Maz first calls out to Han Solo and later can be seen standing outside looking at the planets being destroyed by Starkiller Base.
3. Nigel Godrich – FN-9330
Radiohead producer and film scorer Godrich got his gig as Stormtrooper FN-9330 (one of Finn’s mates, if we’re following the name code) allegedly thanks to Edgar Wright. Rumour has it that he played the stormtrooper blasted into a wall by Han Solo at Starkiller Base (where the superweapon was)
4. Judah Friedlander (30 Rock) – Bar Patron
The man who played 30 Rock‘s slovenly cap-wearer, Frank Rossitano, also showed up in the new Star Wars‘ cantina as the man in the picture below. That fits.
5. Miltos Yerolemou (Game of Thrones) – Bar Patron
Game of Thrones‘ swordmaster Syrio Forel becomes another bar patron in Maz Kanata’s cantina. If you’re wondering why there’s so many Thrones folks about, it’s because the two franchises share a pro casting director – Nina Gold.
6. Billie Lourd (Scream Queens) – Lieutenant Connix
Lourd was in Scream Queens, and the big in-joke was that she wore earmuffs all the time, imitating Princess Leia’s hair – her mother being Leia actor Carrie Fisher. In the movie she can be seen at the Resistance base, tapping away at computer consoles, and standing by the big let’s-take-down-a-superweapon-as-demonstrated-by-this-hologram table, during that Resistance base meeting where they recycle the Rebels’ plans from Episodes IV and VI.
7. Jessica Henwick (Game of Thrones) – X-Wing pilot Jessika Pava
A colleague of Oscar Isaac’s crack pilot Poe Dameron, Pava is played by Jessica Henwick, who you may recognise as a junior barrister from Silk, or as Nymeria Sand from Game of Thrones – one of the deadly new Dornish characters introduced last season.
8. Hannah John-Kamen (Killjoys) – First Order Officer
John-Kamen starred as Violet in an episode of Channel 4’s Banana last year and is a main character in Canadian sci-fi drama Killjoys. In TFA she’s the First Order officer who tells General Hux the mega-death superweapon is ready.
9. Thomas Brodie-Sangster (Love Actually, Game of Thrones) – First Order Officer
“We have an unsanctioned departure from Bay 2” isn’t a line you’d expect to come from Sam, the little kid in Love Actually. But actor Thomas Brodie-Sangster went evil after playing Jojen Reed in Game of Thrones, joining the First Order as an officer to witness Poe Dameron and Finn escape together in a TIE Fighter. Kylo Ren probably killed him.
10. Bill Hader/Ben Schwartz
These guys aren’t really in it, but they were ‘consultants’ for the voice of droid BB-8. How that works hasn’t exactly been made clear, but they helped director JJ Abrams come up with a method for creating BB-8’s trademark bleeps and bloops.
11. Morgan Dameron (director JJ Abrams’ assistant) – Commodore Meta
Morgan Dameron has two parts in The Force Awakens. After giving her surname to Oscar Isaac’s character Poe, she also made a physical cameo as the most self-referential character in the film, Commodore Meta, a Republic officer.
12. Emun Elliott (Game of Thrones) – Major Brance
As Brance, Elliott gets to say a line of Shakespearean proportions: “A laser cannon?” That’s pretty much it.
He’s a major in the Resistance, according to merch, but for a one-line character he’s on-screen a fair bit – hence his status as a named character, probably. Elliott played Game of Thrones‘ cheeky singer Marillion, who ended up getting his tongue cut out by Joffrey. With a name like Brance he’s likely to show up in Episode VIII at some point.
13. Daniel Craig (Spectre) – JB-007
This is the one everyone was talking about late last year, after it was revealed Bond actor Daniel Craig had a cameo in the film. That seemed like a false alarm when Craig vehemently denied it, but it’s since come out that Craig played the stormtrooper guard who was Mind-Tricked by Rey into releasing her, and dropping his weapon on the floor. Easily swayed, but still a boss.
14. Michael Giacchino (Oscar-winning composer) – FN-3181
The composer who did all the music for JJ Abrams’ series Lost got to play another of Finn’s colleagues. He’s reportedly one of the pair who threw Poe at Kylo Ren’s feet in the first attack scene set on desert planet Jakku.
15. Greg Grunberg (Heroes) – X-Wing pilot Snap Wexley
It’s unlikely you’d have missed this one, because Grunberg had loads of time on screen as an X-Wing pilot. But he’s worth making a note of because he’s appeared in most of JJ Abrams’ movies in tiny roles, and has been labelled as the director’s ‘lucky charm’. He’s in Lost as the pilot who crashed, MI3 as Ethan’s mate Kevin – and like Simon Pegg, he’s one of few actors to appear in both Star Trek and Star Wars.
16. Ken Leung (Lost) – Admiral Statura
Another guy from Lost – Leung played Miles Straume, one of the freighter crew introduced in Season 4. Here he’s one of the military head honchos of the Resistance. An Admiral, actually.
17. JJ Abrams (and Lin-Manuel Miranda) – cantina music
They don’t appear physically, but you’ll hear the music of JJ Abrams (and his co-composer Miranda) in the two songs playing during the cantina scene. A cover version, below, has appeared online while we wait for the movie itself to come out.
18. Harriet Walter (Downton Abbey) – Dr Kalonia
If you’re a Downton Abbey watcher you may recognise the actor who played Lady Shackleton, the mother of Mary’s latter beau, Henry Talbot. In The Force Awakens she’s the doctor who patches up Chewie’s arm at the Resistance base and gets all impressed by his bravery.
19. Kiran Shah (Narnia, Lord of the Rings) – Teedo
This actor has been in many fantasy films – he was The White Witch’s driver in The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe and in the Lord of the Rings trilogy he played Frodo’s hobbit double. Here he’s in full costume as Teedo, the alien who tried to nab BB-8 in his net towards the start of the film.