25 Famous People Who You Probably Never Knew Were in Star Wars Movies

Warning: This article contains spoilers.

Once upon a time, a director created a tiny craze when he released a trilogy of films known as Star Wars

While Star Wars made the likes of Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, and Mark Hamilton famous, some well-known actors were also in some Star Wars movies. Hiding in plain sight, these Hollywood stars passed for everything from an alien junk boss to a queen, and most people didn't even notice.

See if you remember any of these minor Star Wars roles on our list.

1. Simon Pegg

Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens Simon Pegg, Daisy Ridley
Image Credit: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.

Comedian and all-around funny actor Simon Pegg took on the role of Unkar Plutt, an alien junk boss residing in Jakku. Playing Plutt, Pegg cheated Rey Skywalker out of money when she sold him her salvage in The Force Awakens

Pegg, famous for movies like Hot Fuzz and Sean of the Dead, suffers a less admirable fate as Plutt. Chewbacca, stepping in to protect Rey, rips Unkar Plutt's arm off and endears himself to even the staunchest Star Wars newbie.

2. Keira Knightley

Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace Keira Knightley
Image Credit: 20th Century Fox.

Known most recently for her role as Loretta MacLaughlin in The Boston Strangler, Knightley entered the Star Wars world when she became Sabe, Padmé's, and later Queen Amidala's double. The Pirates of the Caribbean actress was just 12 years old when she took on the role, and while casting director Robin Gurland had no plans to create a part for Amidala's double, she said this about Sabe's casting:

“One of the hardest roles to cast was that of Sabé, the handmaiden that fills in for the Queen when she is in hiding. Originally we were going to use a stand-in, but that was before we found a girl by the name of Keira Knightley.”

3. Dominic West

The Affair Dominic West
Image Credit: Showtime.

Television and big-screen actor Dominic West grabbed a small role as Jarus Jannick. As a palace guard for the Royal Naboo Security Forces, Jannick was in charge of guarding Padmé Amidala's room inside the Royal House. When Anakin Skywalker visits the eventual Queen, West says, “The boy is here to see Padmé. Let him in.”

While West's role in Star Wars was small, he's a well-known movie and television actor with credits like 300Centurion, and Downtown Abbey: A New Era. He also turned down the role of Mance Rayder in Game of Thrones because he didn't want to be away from his family for such long periods.

4. Billie Lourd

Star Wars: Episode VIII - The Last Jedi Billie Lourd
Image Credit: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.

As the only child of Carrie Fisher, who played Princess Leia and twin to Luke Skywalker in the Star Wars series, it was only fitting that she garnered a small role in this series that made her mother a Hollywood star.

In Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, Lourd played a resistance fighter, Lt. Connix, who ran tactical machinery for General Leia Organa. While Fisher died in 2016, her daughter posthumously celebrated the former actress receiving her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on Star Wars Day, May 4th, 2023.

5. Tony Cox

Bad Santa Tony Cox
Image Credit: Columbia TriStar Film Distributors International.

At three foot and six inches tall, Tony Cox is a little person. As such, he perfectly positioned himself to play an Ewok in Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi. He also reprised his role as Widdle Warrick for two Star Wars-themed TV shows.

Cox was born in Uniontown, Alabama, with an acting career spanning over three decades and includes titles like Legends, Bad Santa, and Date Movie; Cox excels at both serious and comedic entertainment.

6. Keisha Castle-Hughes

Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith Keisha Castle-Hughes
Image Credit: 20th Century Fox.

Queen Apailana would likely be a very different character if not for 33-year-old actress Keisha Castle-Hughes. Finding her place in Star Wars Episode Three: Revenge of the Sith, Castle-Hughes was just 15 years old when she took the role.

Perfectly cast to play Naboo's Queen Apailana, Castle-Hughes fit seamlessly into the structure of Naboo society. While kings weren't unheard of on Naboo, the elected official was often a younger woman — usually a teenager — because people thought of them as endowed with pure wisdom that adults lacked.

7. Treat Williams

In the Blood Treat Williams
Image Credit: Anchor Bay Films Freestyle Releasing.

Imagine deciding to visit a friend on a movie set and end up in the movie. That's what happened to Treat Williams when he decided to see Carrie Fisher on the set of Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back.

Deciding he wanted to be a part of this fun film day, Williams took on the part of an extra and played an officer in the rebel forces. Pictures of him and Carrie Fisher attest to their time together on set, and we're sure are an enduring memory for him and fans of the movie series alike.

8. Jodie Comer

The Last Duel Jodie Comer
Image Credit: 20th Century Studios.

Jodi Comer took on the role of Rey's mother in Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker. The exciting aspect of this mother-daughter duo is that in real life, Comer is 11 months younger than Daisy Ridley, the actress who played Rey.

In the movie, however, Comer gets both the emotional plea to Rey perfect and a death scene that leaves audiences with more questions than answers. For instance, since Rey is a Palpatine, possessing the same power as her dark Sith Grandfather, which of her parents was his child? And if one of her parents was also a Palpatine, why didn't they use that same innate power to overthrow their killer?

9. John Ratzenberger

Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back John Ratzenberger
Image Credit: 20th Century Fox.

While having never auditioned for an acting part and missing the experience of acting school, Ratzenberger got his first part on Cheers with a straightforward question. After tanking his first audition, he asked the casting director, “Do you have a know-it-all?” That led to an improv scene that solidified John Ratzenberger's place in Cheers as the mailman, Cliff Clavin.

Ratzenberger also has a part in every Pixar movie to hit the big screen, from Toy Story to Soul, but what you might not know about the beloved actor is that he has an important, if very brief, part in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. He plays Major Bren Derlin, a Rebel Alliance officer who speaks to Princess Leia as they await Luke and Han Solo's return. “Your Highness,” Ratzenberger says, “There's nothing more we can do tonight. The shield doors must be closed.”

This decision effectively leaves Skywalker and Solo at the mercy of the frigid temperatures on Hoth, an icy abyss in the planetary system by the same name. Covered in snow and ice year-round, Hoth would offer little to no hope of survival in the elements without the protection of the Alliance's Echo Base.

10. Sofia Coppola

The Godfather Part III Sofia Coppola
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures.

Director and actress Sofia Coppola is the youngest child and only daughter of famed filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola and his wife, Eleanor. She debuted in film in her infancy in the cult classic crime drama, The Godfather. She's been active in film since 1972, and with titles like Lost in Translation and Marie Antoinette to her name, she is as accomplished as her father before her.

As a director, she has numerous works to her name, but her handmaiden role as Saché in Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace may surprise fans of her work.

11. Richard Armitage

Berlin Station Richard Armitage
Image Credit: Epix.

Don't feel bad if you have trouble finding Richard Armitage in Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace. He can't see himself either! He had this to say when asked about his role as a Bravo fighter pilot. “I certainly turned up and filmed a day, but I can't find myself in the movie! I think I ended up as a droid. I thought I was a fighter pilot. I can't find where I am.”

Armitage is a British actor who has done several television and movie roles for British and American-made TV and film. His most famous roles include Netflix's Castlevania, The Strangers, and Francis Dolarhyde in the TV series Hannibal.

12. Rose Byrne

Bridesmaids Rose Byrne
Image Credit: Universal Pictures.

At just 22 years old, Rose Byrne stepped onto the set of Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones. As Dormé, Byrne's sole focus was to protect Natalie Portman's Queen Amidala. “What really helped me get into the character of Dormé was definitely her costume. It was so regal that it made me walk and behave very differently than a twenty-two-year-old Sydney girl. Her entire role really is to support Amidala, and her safety is Dormé's top priority…”

Also, don't worry if you have trouble figuring out which way to watch the Star Wars movies. Rose Byrne didn't even know she was in a prequel movie until her husband, Bobby Cannavale, was showing the movie to their two children.

13. Bill Hader/Ben Schwartz

Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens Bill Hader
Image Credit: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.

Star Wars wouldn't be as cool without the loveable droids who aid our heroes in their fight against the Empire and Darth Vader. C3PO, R2D2, and BB-8 are as central to the story as Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, and Han Solo. BB-8 needed a unique way to communicate, and the little droid got the voice he needed from Bill Hader and Ben Schwartz.

Bill Hader, best known for his stint on a little comedy show known as Saturday Night Live, described finding BB-8's voice. “JJ [Abrams] screwing around with this sound effects app on his iPad that was attached to a talk box operated by me. It looked ridiculous, but it made BB-8's voice. At first, I tried doing a voice, but we all agreed it sounded too human.”

Hader and Schwartz received credit in Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens for lending their voice consultations to the film.

14. Celia Imrie

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel Diana Hardcastle, Celia Imrie, Ronald Pickup
Image Credit: Fox Searchlight Pictures.

Celia Imrie is an English actress with quite a list of roles to her name. Movies like Bridget Jones' DiaryThe Gathering Storm, and Lucky Break wouldn't be what they are without her.

But her role in Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace might be the most surprising. According to Female First, she took the part “so her son would think she's cool.”

Originally Imrie intended to snap up the role of Shmi Skywalker, young Anakin Skywalker's mother. However, when that failed, she jumped at the chance to play a fighter pilot for the Bravo Five.

15. Thomas Brodie-Sangster

Pistol Thomas Brodie-Sangster
Image Credit: Hulu.

Thomas Brodie-Sangster might be best known as Sam in Love Actually and Newt from The Maze Runner, but the British actor has many more roles to his name. The 33-year-old actor has been in the business since he was eleven and racked up quite a list of movies and television parts in that time.

He scored a tiny bit-part in Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens as Petty Officer Thanisson. Outside of Hollywood, Brodie-Sangster plays guitar and is in the band Winnet along with his mother, Tasha Bertram.

16. Bai Ling

Locked Down Bai Ling
Image Credit: Lionsgate.

Senator Bana Breemu informed Padmé Amidala that she and other senators “Represented the petition of 2000, and things would change.” She is part of the Galactic Senate from the Humbarine Sector during the fading days of the Galactic Republic. She is also part of the Loyalist Committee.

Although her part was cut from the final film, Bai Ling showed up as Senator Bana Breemu. When her scenes were deleted, Bai alleged they were chopped because she posed for Playboy in 2005. George Lucas, however, refutes that, saying her scenes were axed simply due to time restraints for the finished movie.

17. Daniel Craig

Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens Daniel Craig, Daisy Ridley
Image Credit: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.

Sometimes you're cool enough that simply asking for a role is enough to nab one, at least it was for Daniel Craig. The 55-year-old James Bond actor has opened up about his role as a stormtrooper in Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens.

“I love [Star Wars], of course I do. I wouldn't have asked to be in them if I wasn't a fan.” Having worked with assistant director, Ben Dixon, Craig added, “I just said ‘could I get a part in this?' and he went ‘yeah'.”

18. Harriet Walter

Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens Harriet Walter
Image Credit: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.

Dame Harriet Mary Walter has been nominated for or won almost every acting award. With a Tony, a Laurence Olivier, a Screen Actor's Guild, and three Primetime Emmy awards, she's no novice when it comes to drama.

When asked about her seven-second bit as Dr. Harter Kalonia in the Star Wars series, Walter said it was “a crucial seven seconds in my career.”

She added how someone once told her, “More people will have seen you in those seven seconds than in everything you've done to date added up together.”

19. Joseph Gordon-Levitt

Super Pumped Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Image Credit: Showtime.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt scored a more extensive, broader role in Star Wars: Visions than his original outing with Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi. However, his turn as Slowen Lo has some nostalgia behind it. A ‘smalltime' band known as The Beastie Boys have a 1986 song titled “Slow and Low.”

Interestingly, Gordon-Levitt has been in every Rian Johnson film, including Star Wars: The Last Jedi, even if it was just a tiny bit-part.

20. Sally Hawkins

A Brilliant Young Mind Sally Hawkins
Image Credit: Koch Media.

Though her role is uncredited, Sally Hawkins did have a scene in 1999's Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. And while she's certainly gone on to better roles, she might not have been a part of anything quite as big as Star Wars since.

She said this about her role as an extra. “Oh, I don't even know if I made the final cut. It was one day many years ago. I was still in drama school. A friend was working on it and got me in. I was in a huge audience scene. We were replicated about a thousand times.”

One reason she might not know whether she made the final cut for the film is that Hawkins admits that she's never seen her Star Wars performance.

21. Jon Favreau

Rudy Jon Favreau
Image Credit: TriStar Pictures.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars likely wouldn't be as cool without the voice of Jon Favreau. Always a Star Wars fan, Favreau got his chance to be part of the franchise by providing the voice of Mandalorian Pre Vizsla.

He also provided the voices of Ardennian pilot Rio Durant in Solo: A Star Wars Story and Paz Vizsla in The Mandalorian. Since the release of The Mandalorian, Favreau has dedicated time to the Star Wars TV series Ahsoka and Rangers of the New Republic. While there hasn't been an official announcement, Favreau also hinted at the possibility of doing a live-action take on the popular Star Wars video game: Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.

22. Tom Hardy

Bronson Tom Hardy
Image Credit: Vertigo Films.

Tom Hardy had a great cameo in Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi. As Stormtrooper 926, he finds Finn as he is attempting an incursion into the Supremacy. He congratulates him on his promotion. Unfortunately, Tom's cameo got axed by director Rian Johnson for unknown reasons.

For his part, Hardy did try to keep his involvement on the down low. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, he was asked about the rumor that he planned to be in the movie, and he said. “I don't know if I can even say that. Where did you hear that?” When the interviewer answered, he laughed, adding, “Ah, the internet is a glorious web of deceit and misinformation, isn't it?”

23. Lin-Manuel Miranda

Mary Poppins Returns Lin-Manuel Miranda
Image Credit: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.

Lin-Manuel Miranda might be best known as the director of the massively popular Broadway hit Hamilton. But this writer and composer has more tricks up his sleeve than just music. He also acted and had a small part as a Resistance fighter on Ajan Kloss in Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker.

What you might not know, however, is that Miranda also wrote two songs for the Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens installment of the series. The tracks “Jabba Flow” and “Dobra Doompa” were written by Miranda, and he and Director J. J. Abrams provided vocals.

24. Julian Glover

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade Julian Glover, Alison Doody
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures.

Julian Glover took part in providing the image and voice of General Maximillian Veers in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. At age 88, Glover has been part of some of the biggest movie franchises ever to grace the big screen.

Besides Star Wars, Glover has offered his acting prowess to Indiana Jones and the Last CrusadeGame of Thrones, and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, to name a fewHaving had an incredible career, Glover told The Guardian just how he came about his role in The Empire Strikes Back. According to the well-seasoned actor, his neighbor offered him a spot.

25. Ed Sheeran

Game of Thrones Ed Sheeran, Maisie Williams
Image Credit: HBO.

British singer Ed Sheeran doesn't just like to stick to music. When given a chance, he also likes to act; although he has yet to pick up a leading role, he has made some cameos. He first played in the “Dragonstone” episode of season seven of the celebrated series.

Next came Star Wars Episode VII: The Rise of Skywalker, where the ballad crooner had two roles. His first role was as a First Order stormtrooper, and the second was as Enji Golba — a Didynon male from Didyma V.

Not Comprehensive

This selection is by no means a comprehensive list of everyone who's had a cameo in a Star Wars film. It is a fun set of actors, some very well-known, who've played a part in making Star Wars come to life.

This article was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.