Director Jason Reitman continues his live-read re-staging of classic films with The Empire Strike Back on Thursday, and he's assembled quite a cast to bring the script to life. Entertainment Weekly reports a cast that includes Breaking Bad's Aaron Paul as Luke Skywalker, J.K. Simmons as Darth Vader, Stephen Merchant as C-3P0, "24's" Dennis Haysbert as Lando Calrissian and Kevin Pollack as Yoda.
“The first thing I had to figure out was who is going to be the voice of Luke,” Reitman told EW. “My first instinct was, ‘Who is the actor most like Mark Hamill today?’ But five minutes into that, I’m thinking we already have that, we already have Star Wars as it is. What is the opposite of that? ... Jesse from Breaking Bad questions authority in a much different way than Luke Skywalker does. He growls at it, and his annoyance at his journey will be unique from the traditional boy-to-man transition.”
The actors set to play Han Solo and Princess Leia have not yet been announced. The live read is a part of a monthly ongoing series by Reitman that brings new actors in to read classic film scripts. He's previously staged The Princess Bride, Ghostbusters, American Beauty and more. The series is produced in conjunction with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Tickets for The Empire Strikes Back live read at the Ace Hotel went on sale in early December, and is currently sold out.