Will there be? And would it be? Theoretically speaking, the only characters that would make sense as absolute must-haves would be Luke and the droids: Luke, because he has to hand the baton to the central character of the ST; the droids, because it was always the convention that R2-D2 and C-3PO would be in all of the films - perhaps the only absolute constants through all three trilogies. But that's it. Those are the only absolutes. All else is gravy. The new films don't NEED to reference anyone else in order to work, depending on how they're written. They don't even particularly need to reference any character's absense or explain it away, either. How many characters from the PT were referenced in the OT? Not many, when you get right down to it. Bail Organa was not mentioned by name in Episode IV; neither was Palpatine/Sidious; no mention of Mace; no mention of Jar Jar; no mention of Ahsoka; no mention of Maul; no mention of Tyranus/Dooku; no mention, in fact, of a LOT of characters who had become prominent and important to the PT story. Why? Because they simply weren't necessary to telling the OT (if one discounts the real-world reason that the OT was written before the PT, of course). You'd be surprised, even amazed, by just how few characters from the OT may actually be essential to telling the ST. Now, if we're just saying "I want to see these other characters because I like them and have a personal investment in them (as anyone would, I might add), and so I want to see how they ended up," well, that's understandable, but if it gets in the way of telling an effective story, they shouldn't be there in any way, shape or form. An example: the things that made Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull not work are legion, and have been listed by people much wiser than I, so I won't go deeply into it. But, again just for discussion's sake, if I felt the film would have been better by omitting even that single shot in which Indy makes reference to his dad and Marcus dying, I would rather the film be better and have the fates of those characters be a mystery. For the record, in my opinion that's not one of the things that made the film bad in my eyes, because it was used to make a point: Indy had reached a stage in life where he felt life was taking more from him than it was giving to him, and by the end he learned that life in fact does give as much as it takes away from you if you choose to let it give things to you. It's one of the best concepts of the film, practically lost amid the refrigerator-nuking and vine-swinging and chasing and treasure-hunting and all that jazz. BUT, if I felt for a moment that it DID harm the film, I'd remove it, Sean Connery and Denholm Elliot fans be damned. Same here with Episodes VII-IX. What matters to me is having these films be the best they can possibly be; my interest is in not being horribly disappointed again. If having Han or Chewbacca or even Leia in it will harm that product, I'd just as soon not have them in it. If they're essential to the plot, they should be in it; if they're not, they shouldn't. If even mentioning them or their fates is made into a significant and effective plot point, then they should do it, but if it threatens to disrupt the flow of the film, they shouldn't even be mentioned. Arndt can and should treat these characters with the respect they've earned, true enough, but he can't and shouldn't be so precious with these characters as to shoehorn them in pointlessly to try to make me happy, because he won't.