“Appearing in a Star Wars movie sounds like a dream come true for any actor. But nothing would crush that dream faster than discovering your journey to a galaxy far, far away ended on the cutting-room floor.
That’s what happened to Bai Ling, who was left out of the third prequel, 2005’s “Revenge of the Sith”. […]
“Revenge of the Sith” was filmed in Australia in the summer of 2003. Bai, cast as Galactic Senator Bana Breemu, describes filming as “like an amusement park, like children playing with toys.” Arriving on set, she asked Lucas what he wanted her to do. “Whatever you want”, he told her.
Actors including Terence Stamp have criticised Lucas’ hands-off style of directing actors, but Bai welcomed the freedom. “He was almost not visible,” she remembers. But she adds, “He was totally there to support the artists. Great artists are laid-back, and they give you all the freedom because they trust you.”
Bai’s character was one of a group of politicians discussing opposition to the soon-to-be-Emperor Palpatine. In one scene she appeared alongside Natalie Portman with Genevieve O’Reilly as Mon Mothma, a character from the original trilogy, and Bai’s old friend Katie Lucas under blue makeup as Chi Eekway Papanoida.
With filming over, Playboy magazine courted Bai for a naked photo shoot. […]
None of Bai’s scenes had made it in. Lucas eliminated many of the political discussions among senators, which meant Bai was completely left out.
Lucas denied the photo shoot prompted the edits, and Lucasfilm didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment this week. It’s not uncommon, of course, for scenes to be cut from films, and Lucas said he had made the changes a year before, pointing out he had also cut his daughter, who appeared in the same scenes.
Bai acknowledges the Playboy appearance may have clashed with Star Wars’ family image. But she stops short of blaming the deletion of her scenes on the sexy photo shoot. “That might be a little bit the reason. I don’t know. It’s not my concern”, she says. “I just have to have graciously appreciative feelings and accept the past.”
Was she disappointed to be cut from Star Wars? “Actually, not really,” she insists. “Whatever happens, it’s controlled by the universe. The outcome is not really something I think about — I enjoy the process.” […]
Although she’d been left on the cutting-room floor, on the floor of convention halls Bai was still considered a Star Wars star.
“Oh my god, the fans,” Bai gushes. “They come up to me with pictures they’ve made — my character became part of Star Wars … I feel like I’m truly a part of the family of Star Wars forever.”
Bai hasn’t spoken to George Lucas since working on “Sith”, but “I would still like to work with him”, she says. And she’d love to appear in another Star Wars movie.
Today, Bai Ling is philosophical about her scenes being expunged. “I just feel like I was blessed to be working that closely with George Lucas, because he’s a genius”, she says. “It was a beautiful gift. I have no complaints.”
Read the full article at CNET.
“Bai Ling (Chinese: 白灵, born October 10, 1966) is a Chinese-American actress known for her work in films such as The Crow, Red Corner, Crank: High Voltage, Three… Extremes, Wild Wild West, Anna and the King and Southland Tales, as well as TV shows including Entourage and Lost.”
Source : Wikipedia