Supreme Leader Snoke is tightening his grip on a galaxy far, far away, but some Star Wars fans might doubt that he’ll ever achieve the same pitch-black reputation as Ian McDiarmid’s Emperor Palpatine. And according to McDiarmid, no one else should ever don the iconic cloak.

In an interview published Friday, McDiarmid spoke to BBC News about his role in the Star Wars universe as the terrifying Emperor Palpatine.

I suppose there must be a chance but I think you’d find out about it more quickly than I would. As far as the new films are concerned, I’m dead. There is no question about that. But there is what they call the anthology series and actually the most recent one, Rogue One, was about the time when I was in charge. I was referred to a few times, Darth Vader popped up, but you did not see me. Maybe they are keeping me as a surprise for later but I have no idea. Of course, I don’t want anyone else to play him.

Callbacks to classic Star Wars characters and themes have been emblematic to the recent resurgence of Lucasfilm-branded content. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story brought Darth Vader back in dramatic, cape-swirling fashion, and rumors that he’ll be back for the upcoming Han Solo standalone film have inundated the internet for months.

It feels unlikely that Palpatine will ever darken the galaxy’s doorstep again, but, if he does, McDiarmid seems more than willing to throw some lightning around.


If you liked this article, check out this video of Darth Vader’s most badass moments in the Star Wars comics.