Casting the EU: Rukh, Khabarak and Borsk Fey'lya
It’s Tim from Open-Airlock Policy back with the latest Heir to the Empire casting-call session! This time you’re getting something of a three-for-one with the aliens of the story, namely the Noghri Rukh and Khabarak and the Bothan Borsk Fey’lya.
CGI was limited in the early 90s...and shrinking had not been perfected. For the roles of the Noghri, we have to turn to little people. I would cast Kiran Shah as Rukh and Ed Gale as Khabarak. Shah, even at the time, was a prolific stuntman, and he had appeared as an Ewok in Return of the Jedi. Other work included Superman (1978), The Dark Crystal, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, and Aliens. The role of Khabarak would require more dialogue, so we turn to a seasoned actor and stuntman at the time: Ed Gale. Most famous for playing Chucky in stunts in Child’s Play, he also had roles in Spaceballs, the Land of the Lost revival, and in Howard The Duck in the titular role. With their size and stunt experience, both performers would be able to pull off these roles.
Borsk Fey’lya was an interesting character and the first Bothan we got to meet in the Star Wars universe. Author Timothy Zahn portrayed the species and the character as manipulative, devious, and very proud of the role Bothans played in the destruction of the second Death Star. An actor I think would have been up to the challenge under the heavy makeup is James Spader. Spader, even then, was a versatile actor able to play many types of roles in different genres of films. I can just hear him adjusting his voice to be more breathy and pompous. “It’s hardly worthwhile for us to continue sending a valuable man like Captain Solo out on these contact missions if each is predoomed to failure.” Yes, I need to see this! Spader would make it his own.
Who would you cast in these aliens roles? Let us know in the comments below!
We’re winding things down in this casting-call series and the big roles are coming up, so stay tuned!