Han Solo, everyone’s favorite shoot-first smuggler and all-around rogue, is getting his very own movie in 2018. It will explore his life in the years leading up to his fateful encounter with Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi in a Mos Eisley cantina.
The still-untitled film is the second “anthology” movie planned for the sci-fi franchise, following 2016’s Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Directed by two-time Academy Award winner Ron Howard after the exit of original filmmakers Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, the movie features Hail, Caesar! and Beautiful Creatures actor Alden Ehrenreich in the role of a young Han Solo. It will chronicle the character’s early adventures and the origins of his friendship with Chewbacca, his Wookiee co-pilot and partner.
While we’re still waiting on an official title for the film, the young Han Solo movie is currently scheduled to hit theaters May 25, 2018. Here’s everything we know about the Han Solo movie so far:
It turns out the Han Solo director change had another casualty: Michael K. Williams. The actor was originally set to play a character he describes as a “warrior … with a lot of prestige,” and he had even shot all of his scenes. When Ron Howard took over, however, the project needed reshoots. That wasn’t possible for Williams, as he was already booked for the upcoming historical thriller The Red Sea Diving Resort.
“I would have had to be in London right now reshooting,” Williams told Vanity Fair of the conflict. “The only option was to cut my character from the film.”
Williams’ work is now on the cutting room floor, but he isn’t too distraught. The former Wire star thinks there is still room for his character in the Star Wars universe, even if he isn’t in the Han Solo movie. He indicated to the publication that he still has high hopes for the future.
“I feel very confident that I’ll be back in the galaxy, just not in the Han Solo project,” he said.
If Williams’ character does ever make it to screen, he sounds like an interesting one. Williams told Vanity Fair that the man “had class, money, strength, charisma … and he knew how to fight.”
“If he lived in our world, he would probably hang out with Jay Z and Beyoncé,” Williams added.
At least for the meantime, we’ll have to go ahead without him, but as Williams pointed out, the galaxy’s future is full of possibilities.
Know the score
In July 2017, Lucasfilm announced that Oscar-nominated composer John Powell would take up the baton to score the Han Solo movie.
Best known for his work on the Jason Bourne franchise and the score he created for the 2010 animated feature How To Train Your Dragon that earned him an Academy Award nomination, Powell is just the third composer to score a live-action Star Wars movie. He joins an elite group that includes veteran, five-time Academy Award winner John Williams, who scored all eight of the episodic films in the series, and Michael Giacchino, who won an Academy Award for scoring 2009’s Up and scored last year’s Star Wars anthology film Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
Powell has received praise for his innovative use of live percussion — particularly the Indian Conga drum — in several films, beginning with 2004’s The Bourne Supremacy.
One sweet cape
Along with chronicling the early years of Han Solo and Chewbacca, the film will also feature another famous — or perhaps infamous — rogue from the Star Wars universe: Lando Calrissian.
After rumors began circulating that Han’s former gambling buddy and predecessor as the pilot of the Millennium Falcon would have a role in the movie, Community and Atlanta actor Donald Glover was almost immediately reported as the leading contender for the role.
The casting was confirmed in October 2016 by Lucasfilm, which announced that Glover would play a young Lando opposite Alden Ehrenreich’s Han Solo, taking on the role that Billy Dee Williams originated in Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back.
As usual, the studio offered few hints about the context of the characters’ meeting in the movie, but did indicate that Lando would be portrayed “in his formative years as a scoundrel on the rise in the galaxy’s underworld — years before the events involving Han, Leia, and Darth Vader in The Empire Strikes Back and his rise to Rebel hero in Return of the Jedi.”
In the official casting announcement, former directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller also confirmed that Lando’s iconic cape would appear in the film — and that it fit Glover perfectly.
Finally, in July, Howard posted an image on Instagram that appears to offer the first, blurry look at Glover as Lando.
Although his iconic cape appears to be absent from the shot, that does appear to be Glover in the cockpit of the Millennium Falcon. It’s quite the tease for fans and has already led to some speculation about what the scene could entail.
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