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'Rogue One' Stars Talk About the Most Diverse 'Star Wars' Cast Yet

·Senior Correspondent, Yahoo Entertainment
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The Force Awakens was widely applauded for its diverse ensemble, with it’s three young leads being a woman (Daisy Ridley), a black man (John Boyega), and a Hispanic man (Oscar Isaac). The next Star Wars movie, Rogue One, however, takes the saga’s casting to a whole new level.

The team of Rebel Alliance fighters that squares off against the Empire in the film, which is set just before the events of A New Hope, could double as a United Nations committee. There’s Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones, from Great Britain), Cassian Andor (Diego Luna, from Mexico), Saw Gerrera (Forest Whitaker, an African-American), Chirrut Îmwe (Donnie Yen, from Hong Kong) and Baze Malbus (Jiang Wen, from China), and Bodhi (Riz Ahmed, a Brit of Pakistani heritage).

Related: The ‘Rogue One’ Cast Explains Who Their Characters Are in New 'Star Wars’ Film

“You never see a Chinese character in a Star Wars movie, so I’m flattered and very excited, and honored,” Yen told Yahoo Movies at this weekend’s Star Wars Celebration in London (watch above). Yen, best known for the Ip Man movies, called his role a “social responsibility,” adding that the “world has changed.”

Luna (Y Tu Mamá También) sees the film’s casting as a matter of Hollywood recognizing the demands of a global fan base. “I feel proud to be part of this change. I think the audience is very important, and the audience is sending a message.

Related: Get an Early Look at the Costumes and Props of 'Rogue One’

"They want to be represented on the screen. I’m talking about the world, not in a specific market. Before you would do a film for a specific market, and then let that film travel. Right now if you want the world to turn, you have to include the world, and the diversity that the world brings, and the richness that that can bring to your film. I think it’s a reflection of the world we’re living in.”

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story opens Dec. 16.

Watch Felicity Jones and Kathleen Kennedy talk about Star Wars’s second consecutive female lead: