The newly announced cast of “Star Wars: Episode VII” includes familiar faces Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher, and rising stars Oscar Isaac and Adam Driver. But most conspicuous among the assembled talent is newcomer Daisy Ridley, a relatively unknown actress whose casting has many voices suddenly crying out, “Who?”
Here are five things to know about her.
She’s new on the scene. Ridley’s casting more or less came out of nowhere. Unlike Isaac, Driver and John Boyega, her name wasn’t mentioned in previous rounds of rumors.
The young British thespian’s short resume goes back a year or so, with appearances on the television series “Casualty,” “Youngers,” “Mr. Selfridge” and “Silent Witness.” She also landed a role in the upcoming film “Inbetweeners II.”
She’s the only new female character (so far). At the moment, “Episode VII” is a bit of a boys’ club. Among the seven cast members announced who are new to the “Star Wars” franchise, Ridley is the only woman. (The others actors are Driver, Isaac, Boyega, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson and Max von Sydow.)
Of the six “Star Wars” veterans who are confirmed to return, Fisher is the only woman. More female characters might be added to the mix.
Her character is a mystery. No official information has been released about the new characters Ridley and her cast mates will play, although Driver has been rumored as a villain in the vein of Darth Vader and Boyega is said to be playing a young Jedi.
Previous rumors have also said that the children of Han Solo (Ford) and Princess Leia (Fisher) could play a part in the new film, and Ridley is seated in between Ford and Fisher in a cast photo released by Disney and Lucasfilm, prompting some observers to speculate that she will play their daughter.
She’s multitalented. According to a profile on her talent agency’s website, Ridley’s skills include accents (Cockney, Dublin, London), singing (she’s a mezzo-soprano), dancing (jazz, ballet, tap), playing the violin and playing sports (she’s a highly skilled swimmer).
You can watch her online (barely). Ridley’s acting reel on YouTube and Vimeo was quickly turned private in the wake of the “Episode VII” casting announcement, but eager fans can catch glimpses of her in the short film “Blue Season,” made as part of the Sci-Fi London 48-Hour Film Challenge last year, and in a YouTube clip of her singing “Moon River.”