Billy Dee Williams Will Return for ‘Star Wars: Episode IX’ As Lando Calrissian
Star Wars: Episode IX just got a whole lot cooler.
The Hollywood Reporter says that Billy Dee Williams (and yes, his real name is William Williams, which is also extremely cool) will reprise his role as Lando Calrissian in the upcoming ninth Star Wars film (at least in the main saga).
Williams previously appeared as the lovable smuggler turned Rebel in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Williams also voiced the character on television’s Star Wars Rebels and several video games, including the recent Star Wars: Battlefront and Battlefront II. Earlier this summer, Donald Glover assumed the role of young Lando in Solo: A Star Wars Story, and was widely regarded as one of the highlights of the film. Of course, he was drawing heavily on the performance Williams gave in Empire and Jedi, which is among the most beloved in all of Star Wars.
Lando’s return isn’t too shocking; he played a big role in Solo and he’s one of the few original trilogy cast members who hasn’t turned up yet in the new films. Frankly, there weren’t too many people alive by the end of The Last Jedi (and one of them was General Leia, and Carrie Fisher has since passed away); the Resistance could use some fresh blood. Obviously, there are no details about Lando’s role in the film; director J.J. Abrams is notoriously secretive about his work and his movie’s plots. We’re lucky we know Lando is in the film at all this far in advance. If it was up to Abrams, you’d probably show up to the theater not even knowing the title of the damn film. Star Wars: Episode IX opens in theaters on December 20, 2019.
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