Will Ian McDiarmid Return For Star Wars: Episode 7?

Star-Wars-Emperor4Just yesterday Mr. Ian McDiarmid appeared at the London Film and Comic Con. He spoke at length about his acting career, including his current roles, and whether or not he will be returning for Episode VII. Find out what he said, after the hyperspace jump.   Almost one year ago Latino Review reported an Episode VII rumor that sent tremors in the Force, er, wait, the internet when they reported that their mysterious “source” gave them some inside info. It sent shockwaves throughout the fanboy & fangirl community. Heated debates were had. The internet was in an uproar. The info was that Ian McDiarmid was signed-on to play Palpatine once more! Here’s what they said:

“Palpatine comes back as a Force Ghost..like Obi Wan. (Sith Lords learned similar techniques, which in some cases allowed them to physically interact with their environment.) Palpatine will not be a clone, not in human form.”


So, is this truly possible? I thought they weren’t using EU? Does Palpatine come back as a Sith Spectre? Has Ian McDiarmid signed-on to be in Episode VII?

During his conversation at the LF&CC McDiarmid also answered some questions from the audience. In one particular question McDiarmid directly addresses Star Wars: Episode VII. The audio is not the greatest so it’s difficult at times to make-out what is being said, exactly, but here is what I discerned. The Question of importance begins at 29:38:

Q- “How much would you like to return to the world of Star Wars? If you could, if you did, what would you like to do in that world again?


Ian McDiarmid – “As you know they’re filming Episode Seven . . .  I’m not in that […] I’m not being coy. I’m definitely not in that. As you know he’s dead, right then. I know that we believe in reincarnation and holograms and all the rest of it.”

McDiarmid immediately goes into whether or not there will be a Palpatine spinoff:


Ian McDiarmid – “But you know they’re going to take many twists on the story as the years go on, both spinoffs and new. And I guess they may go back to a time — and I’ve got no clues, I’m just speaking off the top of my head — when the Emperor ran the universe. I don’t want anyone else to play him, do I? So, um, it might happen. But I’m not being coy. I’ve got no more idea than you do.”


Moderator – “The answer is ‘Yes, you’d be up for it?'”


Ian McDiarmid – “Of course!”


So there you have it, from the horse’s mouth, so to speak, we get solid confirmation that the Latino Review “Sith Spectre – Force Ghosts – Red Hologram” rumors are bogus. Ian McDiarmid is NOT returning for Star Wars: Episode VII, but is definitely open to returning for a potential spinoff.   Just to be fair and balanced, it bears mentioning that “Official Denials” have occurred before. Also, it seems likely that McDiarmid would reprise his role if it were somehow logical for him to do so, as he mentioned, barring reincarnation or holograms.   Ian McDiarmid has been one of the great Star Wars actors when it comes to making appearances and dealing with the fans. In this interview he seemed completely open and honest about his career and potential for ever playing Palpatine again. So, either way, we fans of course would be thrilled and lucky to have him back whether it’s in Episode VII or a spinoff. Never say never!


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51 thoughts on “Will Ian McDiarmid Return For Star Wars: Episode 7?

  • July 16, 2014 at 8:26 pm

    Have you guys heard anything else about Daisy Ridley’s POSSIBLE character name? Kira.

    • July 16, 2014 at 8:46 pm

      It’s ***** ****!

    • July 16, 2014 at 9:02 pm

      Source ?

      • July 16, 2014 at 9:25 pm

        I saw that too-


        It’s a bit too earthly I think. I mean not many people are called Leia or Han. But maybe she’s the main character so that wouldn’t apply. Luke was the main character so you’re supposed to mostly identify with him hence why I think George chose a more earthly name- Luke.

        • July 16, 2014 at 9:54 pm

          “not many people are called…Han”

          You’ve never been to Asia have you?

        • July 16, 2014 at 10:24 pm

          It could also be a “code name”. But backwards it’s spelled ARIK. Eric.

          • July 16, 2014 at 10:34 pm

            I haven’t no. I’ve heard of Juan before but Han? I didn’t know there ware actually Han’s.

        • July 17, 2014 at 1:28 pm

          And ‘Luke’ Isn’t an earthly name?

      • July 16, 2014 at 10:50 pm

        ****** *****!

    • July 16, 2014 at 9:34 pm

      that name sucks

    • July 16, 2014 at 11:31 pm

      They’re ripping character names from Star Trek (DS9)? Unlikely.

    • July 17, 2014 at 12:02 am

      Kira Rocker , no that´s not her name.I bet it’s more skywaler/solo souding.

      I bet Aurora Solo or something like that

  • July 16, 2014 at 8:35 pm

    Number Two! And I personally would love it if the Emperor was somehow incorporated into Episode 7.

  • July 16, 2014 at 8:37 pm

    It would be cool to see the backstory he spoke of in Episode III. A young Palpatine spinoff.

    • July 16, 2014 at 9:43 pm

      They did cover that in a novel entitled Darth Plagueis, which I’ve heard is really great. Sadly, it’s not canon anymore… But a reworked adaptation would make for a good spin-off movie. Plus, we really need to see the Sith Lord that trained the most evil being in the Galaxy on-screen.

      If we were to get an origin story (and I’m almost completely certain that that’s the only storyline that a movie starring Palpatine would follow), other actors would have to play the character at different ages. I think Isaac Hempstead Wright (Bran Stark) would work as a child version of the character, and that Tom Hiddleston (Loki) would work well as a an adult Palps (for reference: http://i.imgur.com/DX88EiR.jpg). Ian McDiarmid, of course, would appear as the elderly version of the character.

      • July 16, 2014 at 10:06 pm

        Oh my goodness Tom Hiddleston would make an awesome Young Palpatine!! Do it Disney!!!

        • July 17, 2014 at 7:52 pm

          Fassbender would be awesome as a young Palpatine. And set it before the old republic era or a very primitive time in the star wars universe. Freeze him at some point in the story line, plus the fact Lucas once mentioned Palpatine was possibly older than Yoda. Always creating havoc somewhere in some galaxy as shapehifter.

  • July 16, 2014 at 8:39 pm

    Him and Liam were the only actors who were convincing in the PT. So I’m ok with his return/cameo if one should ever happen.

    • July 18, 2014 at 10:55 am

      How you are able to count out Christopher Lee from this comment is a mystery to me.

      Ewan McGregor also did a pretty good job in my opinion, and Samuel Jackson (not that Jackson hade a very hard character to play.. but still).

  • July 16, 2014 at 8:43 pm

    Can’t imagine JJ Abrams wasting time with force ghosts when he has Andy Serkis and all that incredible technology capable of creating and bringing to life any creature or alien character at his disposal.

  • July 16, 2014 at 8:47 pm

    I could totally see the Emperor in Episode 7 as a Holocron Projection. Spin-Offs and or Origin movies are great opportunities too.

  • July 16, 2014 at 8:53 pm

    I think he will appear. Finals episodes of The Clone Wars showed Korriban and Bane’s Sith Spectre. Like you said, he could be a Sith Spectre in Episode VII.

    • July 16, 2014 at 9:36 pm

      Yes. If that episode of Clone Wars showd us something is that all the “Force Ghost” thing was a Sith trick. Or, at least, a secret held by them.
      Jedi didn’t believe in life after death and Qui Gon admits he made some studies by himself, but was killed before finishing, and taht’s why he could not return as a ghost and his body didn’t desapeared.

      I’m totaly sure palpatine knew that secret: he uses it to tempt Anakin in Episode III and, for Anakin turns into a ghost, he should have tought him (Anakin’s body probably disapeared too, I see no other explanation for Luke to burn his father’s body wth Vader’s mask on).

      Palaptine returning as a ghost wouldn’t be a problem. Just, please, no reincarnation in clones or crap like that

      • July 17, 2014 at 3:30 am

        Yeah, I hated the Clone saga. It’s the more lazier way to bring a character back to life. Creativity must rule! ahahaha

  • July 16, 2014 at 9:00 pm

    I highly doubt we’ll see McDiarmid in EpVII. He’s said on several occasions that he wants nothing to do with Star Wars anymore. Coming back for VII would completely contradict that statement. I mean, it’s not like he’s George Lucas or something 😉
    “There will be no Star Wars VII……. Wait, yes there will!”

    • July 16, 2014 at 10:36 pm

      ‘He’s said on several occasions that he wants nothing to do with Star Wars anymore.’

      Moderator – “The answer is ‘Yes, you’d be up for it?’”
      Ian McDiarmid – “Of course!”


    • July 17, 2014 at 12:14 am

      An unlikely response, if I may say so. I remember clearly reading several interviews with McDiarmid where he stated that he wants nothing more to do with Star Wars. My apologies, it was an honest mistake on my part.
      It would be very interesting to see him return as a hologram of sorts. He’s the the cream of the crop when it comes to sinister Star Wars villains!
      Thanks for making that correction, Anon.

  • July 16, 2014 at 9:14 pm

    With prequel prosthetics? NO.
    Scary as in OT? Pfff I don’t know, man. I don’t know…
    I’m tired of Windu’s, Emperor’s, Anakin’s,…unnecessary rumor apparitions

  • July 16, 2014 at 9:25 pm

    As long as it makes sense to the overall story I would be fine with it. He was the Emperor of the galaxy for nearly 25+ years and probably had followers outside of his Imperial staff. At least a mention of him between other Sith lords would be interesting.

  • July 16, 2014 at 9:33 pm

    The only Place where Palpatine could work, is in the dark side Cave on Dagobah (because noone knows what´s going on there & what kind of Place it is.

    A brief encounter with him there & then NO explanation on whheter or not he is a forceghost, a Mirage, an illusion or just a dark side trick to confuse the jedi

  • July 16, 2014 at 9:34 pm

    Why is the blue text in paragraph slightly more blue than usual? I swear.

  • July 16, 2014 at 9:48 pm

    theyd have to approach him for rights to even have a poster of him above lukes bed (theyd have to pay him) ……

  • July 16, 2014 at 9:58 pm

    Ian McDiarmid was one of the very few good things about the PT.
    I don’t expect him to be in the new trilogy, but it’d be nice to see him in a spin-off movie.

  • July 16, 2014 at 10:08 pm

    You star wars fans wannabe … his name is Sidious ! Palpatine is an alian a name that died to him as he became a dark lord of the sith.Anyways hope he is back as a red force ghost, would be awesome.

    • July 16, 2014 at 10:32 pm

      Might as well change your name to “Pompous Nerd”

    • July 16, 2014 at 11:34 pm

      No it’s the Emperor

  • July 16, 2014 at 10:26 pm

    Would rather see anakin return to the saga in episode 7 than palpatine. That’s just me tho.

  • July 16, 2014 at 10:33 pm

    McDiarmid is one of those great actors from the Royal Shakespeare Company, who acted with Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellan. They all get to play these mythic characters in big movies because they paid their dues on stage.

  • July 16, 2014 at 10:51 pm

    So according to J.W. Rinzler Boba Fett survives the Sarlaac Pit via George Lucas. I guess that means Fett is alive for now. Until GL changes his mind again.

    • July 16, 2014 at 11:35 pm

      GL has nothing to do with it but I’m sure they’ll capitialize on Boba Fett. The smart money says he’ll survive the Sarlaac.

    • July 16, 2014 at 11:54 pm

      oh noooooooooo
      why use old dead bounty Hunters¨
      Boba is dead, dead I say and let him rest in Peace.
      this is getting worse all the time.

      • July 17, 2014 at 12:02 am

        Agreed. Boba would be in his mid to late 60’s by now. Not much excitement coming from him.

        • July 17, 2014 at 2:22 am

          Everything about Fett should have stayed mysterious. That way he could appear for eternity.

          How you ask? Passing on the armor Zorro style. Talk about building up a reputation. A Bounty Hunter that never dies and has thousands of marks to his name.

          At least that was one way to keep him cool. Oh well. Would of, could of, should of I guess.

  • July 17, 2014 at 12:02 am

    I’m glad to hear Sidious won’t be returning yet again. If he can come back as a Force ghost 30 years later, will he ever be able to leave?

  • July 17, 2014 at 12:49 am

    I hope he’s back at some point, even as a ghost, or perhaps resurrected by some misguided padowans- such a classic villain.

  • July 17, 2014 at 1:26 am

    Just saying this, there is a slight possibility of him not dying in the first place.
    He might has survived and over the 30 years between Return of the jedi and episode 7 he could have rebuilt his empire.

    he could have easily escaped js.

    • July 17, 2014 at 2:52 am

      that would be sooooo sinister, somehow surviving the fall down the shaft & then stay away for 30 years as a part of a bigger scheme:

      “Everything has transpired as to my design”… 😀

  • July 17, 2014 at 5:24 am

    Palpatine will not be in the new trilogy. Not buying it for a second. Makes no sense to bring back his character when they can create new mysterious villains with more power.

    Also, I thought the Emperor was perfectly employed in the OT.

    But when you know where a character’s arc is going, it is not interesting. The bubble is popped. This is the main reason why the PT sucked. We knew exactly where EVERYTHING was going to land. There was zero suspense.

    I liken the OT to watching fireworks. It was dazzling, fun, and there was a lot of anticipation and a great finale.

    The PT was like having us watch how the fireworks were constructed in a factory.

    By the time you got to the end of EP. 3 it started to become exciting because you could start to taste the original trilogy look, characters, and begin to anticipate that exciting journey.

    I do worry about 4k and Super HD sharpness and resolution when you introduce puppets. Lenses were much, much softer until the mid 80’s, and then by the 90’s they were very sharp.
    Now things are digital. It takes away the painterly look and also makes it harder to disguise the make-believe.

    I am hoping it will look great and not like the the terrible Spielberg effect of artificially softening the sharpness, and hazing the highlights to disguise things. The Last Indiana Jones looked fake.

  • July 17, 2014 at 3:37 pm

    Doesn’t Lucas have a formula for creating names in the SW universe? You take the last three characters of your last name and put it in front of your first name, or something to that effect. So Kira Rocker would be Ker Kira

  • July 17, 2014 at 3:39 pm

    We need to see anakin

  • July 17, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    This interview speaks about Latino Review’s rumors credibility

Comments are closed.