Star Wars

‘These are the royals you’re looking for’: William and Harry play Stormtroopers in ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 18 November, 2017, 2:18pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 18 November, 2017, 10:08pm

A big Star Wars secret is out and actor John Boyega has spilt it: Prince William and Prince Harry will appear in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which opens on December 15, but you will not know it because they are playing First Order Stormtroopers in signature face-obscuring helmets.

Spoiler alert: pay attention to any scene in an lift.

Boyega, who plays reformed Stormtrooper Finn in the film, said he shared a scene with the royal pair “wrapped in Stormtroopers costumes”, during the taping of an interview for The Hollywood Reporter.

THR also reported on Friday that Will, Harry, British actor Tom Hardy and singer Gary Barlow appear together as Stormtroopers in the same scene, guarding Boyega’s character in an lift, “surely making it Star Wars’ most secretly star-studded sequence of all time”.

Boyega joked that sharing a scene with this posse – Hardy and Barlow are friends of the princes – made for a “strange contrast of a weird family.”

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“It’s the best of both worlds for me,” Boyega said, calling it a “great” experience.

Officially, Kensington Palace was polite but frosty when asked to comment.

“This has been reported off and on for a year and we haven’t commented,” said the princes’ top spokesman, Jason Knauf, in an email.

But assuming Boyega had his facts right – how did this happen? And when?

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Apparently, it was set up when the royals paid an official visit to the Pinewood Studios set of The Last Jedi outside London in April 2016. At the time, there were rumours they filmed a scene in disguise, but the pictures from the visit show them dressed in their usual sports jackets and trousers, goofing around with the cast, playing with lightsabres, hugging Chewbacca and posing for pictures.

Hobnobbing with the stars on a film set is one of the perks of being royal; Will and Harry, plus Will’s wife, Duchess Kate of Cambridge, have also visited Harry Potter sets in recent years. Queen Elizabeth II even visited the Belfast set of Game of Thrones but declined the chance to sit atop the Iron Throne.

Besides, movies are a major British cultural export, and royals are always keen to promote Britain’s economic interests. The princes checked out production workshops and met the creative teams working behind the scenes on the Star Wars films.