Return of the smuggler

Who's that playing Sabacc with Zeb?

Who’s that playing Sabacc with Zeb? Screengrabs courtesy of Tim Veekhoven (@sompeetalay) and Blue Leader (@blue__leader)

Nope. This time, we’re not talking about Han. We’re talking about the other lovable smuggler, Lando Calrissian. It seems Disney’s Star Wars Rebels animated series has some kind of tractor beam that pulls celebrity names (some out of retirement) into voicing their original Star Wars characters. Besides Billy Dee Williams as Lando Calrissian, James Earl Jones, Anthony Daniels and Frank Oz have made their appearances as Darth Vader, C3PO and Yoda respectively.

The return of General Calrissian... well, before he was a General — and probably still pals with Han.

The return of General Calrissian… well, before he was a General — and probably still pals with Han. Screengrabs courtesy of Tim Veekhoven (@sompeetalay) and Blue Leader (@blue__leader)

So why are we more excited about Billy Dee Williams? Well, if you grew up in the 80s, you’d know Billy Dee Williams wasn’t just a two-hit wonder in Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back and Star Wars VI: Return of the Jedi. He had also made notable appearances in long running TV soap Dynasty and as Two-Face in Michael Keaton’s Batman. (He was also in Night Hawks with Sylvester Stallone but let’s not bring that up.)

Williams is the only actor on Star Wars who has actively kept his character alive, with productions such as Robot Chicken’s Star Wars II and III, and in the awesome-st Lego movie. The episode, titled Idiot’s Array, will air in the U.S on Jan 19.

There has yet been no word on the Lando’s return in Episode VII: The Force Awakens – but we can hope.

We think the resemblance is uncanny! Can you tell the real and the CG apart? That hair!

We think the resemblance is uncanny! Can you tell the real and the CG apart? That hair! Images: Screengrab courtesy of Tim Veekhoven (@sompeetalay) and Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back

Star Wars Rebels takes place in a timeline between Episodes III: Revenge of the Sith and Episode IV: A New Hope. This is a time when the Galactic Empire is unfurling its iron grip throughout the galaxy and the ragtag crew of the starship Ghost, which includes Force-strong teen Ezra and Jedi Knight-in-hiding Kanan, makes guerilla strikes on Imperial Forces.

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