One of the most eagerly anticipated Blu-ray and DVD features for Star Wars: The Force Awakens is, without a doubt, those 30 minutes of deleted scenes director J.J. Abrams promised us. And one of those deleted scenes may be a cameo appearance from Luke Skywalker's wise Jedi master, Yoda.
The Force Awakens editor Maryann Brandon revealed to Entertainment Tonight (via the good folks over at ScreenCrush) that Yoda nearly made it into the Star Wars movie, but his cameo was ultimately cut:
“There was one point where we were actually thinking of having Yoda in the film, and then we decided not to. Frank Oz came in for a day and did a whole bunch of Yoda and he was over the moon to do it — and we were tickled pink!”
Looks like the Star Wars powers-that-be were serious enough about having Yoda appear in The Force Awakens to bring in Frank Oz to provide some voice-over work for the fan-favorite character. We do hear Yoda’s voice at one point in the movie (during Rey’s vision), but it’s clear that a slightly bigger role in mind for him, they had.
Here’s what ScreenCrush says about how Yoda’s appearance in Abrams’ movie (even though Yoda died in Return of the Jedi) would have worked, and why he may have been cut from the film:
Yoda was reportedly going to appear to Luke as a Force Ghost speaking to Rey. There were early rumors that Yoda would have a dialogue with Luke in the film, but given what we know about Abrams’ and Lawrence Kasdan’s rewrite of the original Michael Arndt script, Luke was never enough of a presence to have any conversation with anyone other than Rey. He always just appeared at the end of the film, because, as Arndt put it, “It just felt like every time Luke came in and entered the movie, he just took it over. Suddenly you didn’t care about your main character anymore because, ‘Oh f–k, Luke Skywalker’s here. I want to see what he’s going to do.’”
There you have it. Would you have liked to see Yoda in Star Wars: The Force Awakens?