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Matt Smith Ignites ‘Star Wars’ Buzz: Cut ‘Rise of Skywalker’ Role Shifted ‘History of Franchise’

Smith has revealed his cut "Star Wars" character was at the center of a "transformative" story detail.

Matt Smith attends the premiere of 'Last Night In Soho' during the 78th Venice Film Festival at Palazzo del Casino on the Lido in Venice, Italy, on 04 September 2021. Photo by: Hubert Boesl/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images

Matt Smith

Hubert Boesl/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images

Matt Smith’s new interview on “Happy Sad Confused” podcast is igniting a tidal wave of buzz among “Star Wars” fans thanks to his tease about the “Rise of Skywalker” role he signed on for but didn’t shoot. News broke in August 2018 that Smith was joining “Star Wars: Episode IX” (it had yet to be given an official title at the time), but the “Doctor Who” favorite was nowhere to be found in the film’s theatrical cut. “Skywalker” went through several script and development changes. Whoever Smith was supposed to play got cut, but rumors have persisted that it was a game-changing role along the lines of Emperor Palpatine’s son.

“No, I didn’t [shoot any scenes,]” Smith said. “We were close to me being in it and then it never quite happened. I think the thing they were thinking of me for, eventually it became obsolete and they didn’t need it, and so, I never got to be in ‘Star Wars,’ there we are.”

Smith said he “could not possibly say” whether the role was Palpatine’s son, but it’s this tease that is getting the “Star Wars” fandom worked up: “But it was a pretty groovy thing, it was a really groovy part and concept. It was a big thing, it was a big story detail, a transformative ‘Star Wars’ story detail and it never got quite over the line.”

“I mean it was like a big [makes a redacted sound] shift in the history of the franchise,” Smith added. “There was no costume [test] and there were a couple of meetings to talk about it. Maybe I can come back, you never know. To come back as… [the phone starts to cuts out]. Sorry, my friend.”

Smith can currently be seen in theaters in Edgar Wright’s “Last Night in Soho.” Watch his interview in the video below.

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