Grant opened up in a new podcast about being cast in the blockbuster, revealing he had to read an interrogation scene.
While the scenes he was asked to do were not Star Wars-specific, there could be something in JJ Abrams wanting to see Grant playing in a specific ballpark.
Speaking to Josh Horowitz on the podcast Happy Sad Confused – as reported by Star Wars blog Sleemo – Grant said: “I got sent a 10-page generic sort of, I think it was an interrogation scene clearly from a 1940s British B picture because the references were not Star Wars and the language was something that my grandfather would have spoken in.
“And I thought, you know, the three contrasting scenes that you were supposed to show as much versatility you could muster in a self-taping situation.
“So I did that and sent it off and it goes into cyberspace and you don’t even think about it again because it’s what actors, you know, what you do all the time: you audition, send stuff out and never hear [back].
“And then I got a call from my agent saying, ‘Oh when you go to Pinewood Studios, are they going to send a car to pick you up?’ and I thought: Why? That’s never happened to me before. A car to go and have a meeting.
“So they did and I got there and the casting director Nina Gold who had gotten me there in the first place was very smiley and I said, ‘What am I here for? I don’t have any scenes to prepare. I had not been told—’ she said, ‘No no, don’t worry about that.’ So I went in.
“J.J. was sitting with Daisy Ridley and said, ‘Hey! Great. Come in. So you’re gonna do it?’
“And I said, ‘Do what?’”
He added: “And at this point the room went upside-down and I’m sure he was telling me in detail what part I was playing and what the character is called.
“I have no memory of that whatsoever. I just kept thinking: I might be in Star Wars.
“I kept waiting for them to say, ‘Well you’re going to come in and stand in for somebody else because we need somebody to test your height or your age or whatever.’ But no, they kept saying — ‘So you are going to do this aren’t you?’ and I said of course I’m going to do this.
“So that’s what happened. And I still didn’t believe that it was going to happen.
“I know the vagaries such a minor paranoia that you can shoot stuff and then be cut out of it.”
Star Wars 9 began shooting in August and has continued work in London and in Jordan.
It had been rumoured that Grant would be playing popular character Thrawn – who has never appeared in a Star Wars main-saga movie – but this has been downplayed.
The movie is out in December 2019.