Star Wars. Han Solo. Excitement. The casting of Han Solo in the new Star Wars Anthology film heats up!
In less than a month, we’ll be sat in a theatre, gripping our popcorn and… Well, I don’t know about you, but I’m getting excited.
Star Wars is close to my heart and while I feel that the Star Wars Anthology films are a good idea, I have very mixed feelings about a Han Solo spinoff film (scheduled to be released on May 25th, 2018).
There’s always a ‘but‘ or a ‘what if‘ with any film or franchise that’s as popular as Star Wars is. Han Solo is such an iconic character and played by one of Hollywood’s last remaining megastars. Any actor stepping into the role could easily be viewed as a cheap imitation of Harrison Ford or completely wrong for the role.
Its an impossible task unless one of two things happen:
- a) Similar to X-Men First Class, the actors don’t imitate those who played the older version of the character (under the pretence that the character is younger and therefore different)
- b) As with River Phoenix in Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade, Han Solo is played by a significantly younger and very talented actor who is believable as a young Harrison Ford
The most critical ingredient is Lawrence Kasdan. He’s involved with writing both Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens and the Han Solo spinoff. As Han Solo will be a central character in both and I would be surprised if there weren’t any direct links between both films.
Kasdan is one of the driving forces behind The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, and the Indiana Jones trilogy. He’s a spectacular writer who can add layers of depth to characters without slowing the pace of the story. Taking Empire as an example, a lot of Han Solo’s characterization happens during action sequences.
It was officially announced by Lucasfilm that Phil Lord and Chris Miller will be directing the film. They’ve been very successful despite not managing to create a film or television series of any real merit.
They produced a pilot for Fox called Clone High that MTV picked up. The television series ran for 13 episodes and while it was well received by the critics, it was never renewed for a second series.
In 2003, the duo were fired from Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs and then rehired in 2006. They wrote and co-directed the film which was a financial success at the box-office, but could be described as a very average film… at best… This trend continued with The Lego Movie (interestingly, a film that features a Lego Han Solo) and 21 Jump Street.
This isn’t to say that they’re dreadful films. They’re okay. Better than a kick in the nuts. And while I fully expect that I’ll eat my words, I don’t understand why they’re being handed a Star Wars film.
The most obvious reason would be that there’s a considerable amount of comedy in all of their films with 21 Jump Street also being traditional buddy cop movie. This could mean that new Han Solo Anthology film might have a similar tone.
This is supported by what Kathleen Kennedy recently revealed about the film:
“We don’t want to spend time going back and answering a lot of questions that, quite frankly, I don’t think people want answered… I think the key here is that we are identifying an event or events in Han Solo’s life that gives you some idea of who he is and why he is the character we have all known to love… You can imagine, given who we’ve chosen to come in and direct, it should be very entertaining and funny. Han Solo is the character inside Star Wars that everybody knows has a wit and sense of humor. So that’s what this should be.”
Okay, I freely admit this is just speculation, but some have commented that Han Solo and Chewbacca won’t be friends to begin with, but will instead be unlikely allies forced to work together…. Speculation…
Yet, one thing remains… Casting of Han Solo in the Star Wars Anthology Film Heats Up!
Casting of Han Solo in the Star Wars Anthology Film
Kathleen Kennedy noted that the Han Solo film won’t repeat one of the main criticisms of The Phantom Menace:
“He’ll definitely be probably in the high teens, low 20s… We’re not introducing you to a 10-year-old Han Solo.”