On May 25th, Solo: A Star Wars Story will be released – a prequel to all other Star Wars films that follows the beginnings of our favourite charming space rogue, Han Solo. Starring Alden Ehrenreich in the title role, along with Emilia Clarke, Donald Glover and Woody Harrelson, fans are definitely looking forward to seeing what the Ron Howard film has in store.
As per any Star Wars film, it’s gotten its fair share of buzz and controversy, so before the film drops, we decided to put together a list of things that we’re hoping will make it into the film, with the top things we hope to see in Solo: A Star Wars Story.
Marvel’s fairly recent comics run revealed a character from Han Solo’s past that many are wondering whether or not she’ll make an appearance in the film – or, it’s inevitable sequel. Which kinda seems more likely. So in these 2015 comics, it’s revealed that Solo had another wife in the past, named Sana Solo aka Sana Sarros, who had tracked him down across the galaxy in order to bring him home.
There’s speculation that Thandie Newton may be playing the character, although the actress has been credited as someone named Val. Sana and Han’s marriage wasn’t out of love – it was all part of a scam that went haywire. When things got nasty, Solo took off, abandoning Sana who made it her goal to hunt him down and return the favor.
Of course. You know it’s a Star Wars film when everyone wants to see Boba Fett make another appearance. And rightfully so. This time around, people are hoping that Solo Story will give us more Boba Fett the way that Rogue One gave us more insight on Darth Vader, giving us a glimpse at why Boba was considered to be the most feared bounty hunter in the galaxy. Many speculate it would work, since there’s high hopes that Solo Story will further dive into the underworld of the Star Wars galaxy. But maybe don’t get your hopes up.
One of the more notable comments from fans that has been floating around the inter-webs since the teaser trailer dropped was that Alden Ehrenreich didn’t seem to be emulating Harrison Ford’s version of Solo much. Most think this is because of how young and inexperienced the character will start off as at the start of the Solo film. What we’re really anticipating is how he got his start as a smuggler, and how he progressed into the character we meet at the start of A New Hope.
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If you’ve been following the news about the film since the initial announcement that it was going to be made, you’re probably familiar with the swapping of directors that Lucas-film pulled off after a few weeks of principle photography. Originally, the directors of The Lego Movie, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, were on board to direct the film, but were then canned due to rumors that they were using too much improvisation on set and not following the script.
Their replacement was Hollywood favourite, Ron Howard. What’s got us curious though is how consistent the film will feel, and if any of the previous directors’ stylistic marks will still be left on the final product. Remember what happened to the Justice League when directors got swapped out? Yeah, felt really odd. Here’s hoping this film won’t suffer from similar failures.
Jabba The Hutt:
Jumping back to characters returning from Star Wars episodes 4-6, let’s talk about a really obvious one. Jabba the Hutt. He and Solo have quite the history together.
While we do know that Han pissed Jabba off when he dumped his cargo during a smuggling job when Imperials boarded his ship, there may be other circumstances regarding that situation, or regarding how the two met in the first place. There’s also suspicions as to why Han, being the smooth talker he is, would dump Jabba’s cargo in the first place and risk the reprocussions. Aside from that, there have been rumours from sources close to the production that stated Jabba is in the film. What do you guys think? Is there more beyond the surface there, story-wise?
Solo has some pretty iconic outfits. And outfits can be quite telling of a character. Ever notice the stripes on the sides of his pant legs in Star Wars: A New Hope? They actually have meaning. Known as a Corellian Bloodstripe, they’re a military award given to those on Solo’s home planet of Corellia, awarded for courage under fire. A Corellian is entitled to kill without repercussion any other Corellian or non-Corellian caught wearing them that hadn’t earned them.
So how did Han get his? We’ve never gotten a clear answer about it yet. Han won both classes of blood-stripes, but its rumored he won them both within several days, and that perhaps one set of them were due to the events surrounding his rescue of Chewbacca.
The Kessel Run:
Another unknown when it comes to Solo’s past is his claim that he made the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs. The Kessel Run is a hyperspace route commonly used by smugglers to move spice from the spice mines of Kessel, as well as other illicit substances. Solo’s claim would have broken the record for the previous fastest Kessel Run. Why is this a big deal? The Kessel Run involves several extreme changes in velocity in order to jump to and drop out of light speed with the minimum time spent out of hyperspace while making drops, pick ups or tight turns, according in Wookieepedia. So imagine the skill something like that would take. Solo had stated that he made the run in the Millennium Falcon.
While we already know that Lando Calrissian is very much a part of Solo Story – played by the amazingly talented Donald Glover no less – and we can definitely expect to see a lot about their friendship come into play in the film.
We’re hoping to see more about how that friendship started, and, most importantly, how Han beat Lando in that Corellian Spike game of sabacc, that won him our next number.
The Millennium Falcon:
I think its a sure bet that we’ll get to see Solo acquiring the Millennium Falcon in this film. As we mentioned in the previous number, Solo won the ship in a dice game against Lando. We REALLY want to see how that goes down. Han keeps the pair of golden dice he won with hanging in the ship’s cockpit, so needless to say, the circumstances leading up to and during the game will probably be incredibly entertaining. The trailers have also given us a glimpse at how the Falcon looked when it was in Lando’s care – it’s pretty damn spotless.
Chewbacca’s Wookie life debt:
And lastly, we’re hoping that Solo Story will shows us how Chewbecca and Han met. Now we already know that their friendship began after Han saved Chewie’s life and he swore a Wookiee life debt to the smuggler.
During the rise of the Empire, Chewie had been captured by Trandoshan slavers until Han freed him but the circumstances around the event are still widely unknown. Director Ron Howard has already described the film as a love story between Chewy and Han, so we’re excited to see how their bromance blossoms.
The Millennium Falcon Explained:
Despite everyone in ‘Stars Wars’ constantly crapping on it, What a piece of junk! This bucket of bolts is never gonna us past that blockade. Blow that piece of junk out of the sky! nothing touches the Falcon’s timeless Design In early scripts, the Falcon was simply referred to as the ‘Pirate Ship,’ and Lucas’ rough sketches looked a lot more traditional. It had big rockets in the back, a cockpit in the front, and a long cylindrical body. He handed off his idea to Ralph McQuarrie and the team at ILM, who fleshed it out through further sketches, storyboards, and models, until they landed on the final design. Then, after months and months of hard work and endless iterations, George Lucas made a last minute call to ditch everything and start over from scratch. Ah, yes. Turns out, a TV show called ‘Space: 1999′ started airing in the interim, and it featured a ship called the ‘Eagle’ that looked a little too close for comfort.
This is also where the name comes from. ‘1999,’ one more year, millennium, eagle, falcon. Millennium Falcon. George Lucas is a genius. It’s not that Lucas was worried about plagiarism, he just wanted his movie’s most important ship to have a distinct aesthetic, it needed character and personality to match the cocky scoundrel behind the wheel. So, after spending a third of their budget on the 7-foot long Pirate Ship model, ILM went back to the drawing board. There’s a longstanding urban legend that the Falcon’s shape was inspired by a half-eaten hamburger, Make the ship kinda like a hamburger, with a bun on the outside and the meat in the middle.
ILM’s Joe Johnston had only four weeks to design, sculpt and build the spaceship, which is why there aren’t too many surviving sketches or drawings, there wasn’t enough time. They kept the radar dish, gun batteries and WWII-inspired cockpit from the Pirate Ship, and slapped them on a new body made of bashed-together parts from Ferrari and Tank model kits. If only they had Gundams back then, we would have had a totally different spaceship. The crew lovingly called it the ‘Pork Burger,’ but they eventually settled on a new name that, unlike Luke and Ben, you’ve probably heard of: You’ve never heard of the Millennium Falcon? Should I have? As for their original model, some minor alterations transformed the puny pirate ship, into the bulky blockade runner from the opening scene. The Tantive IV was too slow to outrun the Imperials, but the Falcon is all about Function The YT-1300 freighter first rolled off the assembly line a long time ago, Long, long ago in a… Somewhere else. nearly 100 years before the Battle of Yavin, in fact. You can even spot it flying around in the prequels, if you squint hard enough.
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It’s kind of tough to see, but the original builders would probably have a hard time recognizing their product, too. That’s because the Falcon has passed through countless hands over the decades, with each Captain modifying the ship to suit their own needs, and reflect their personality. When we first meet the ship in ‘Solo,’ it’s in the debonair hands of Lando Calrissian, and in this case, you can absolutely judge a book by it’s cover, or a ship by its hull. The Falcon is decked out with a white and blue paint job, a sleek profile that resembles early Ralph McQuarrie paintings, and a mysterious new section that fills the gap between its headlights. Of course, it’s what’s on the inside that counts, and, as you’d expect from the coolest mother trucker in the galaxy, Lando turned the Falcon’s interior into the ultimate interstellar party spot.
It’s got a kitchen and wetbar, a top-of-the-line sound system, probably with an Amazon Echo in there, a classic Dejarik table, and of course, a cape for every occasion. He basically took a semi-truck and turned it into the Shagging Wagon, I mean, that bed definitely didn’t fit two people in the Original Trilogy. Which, begs the question, where did Chewie sleep? When are you gonna take the couch? I want the bed! Lando has always been more of a schmoozer than a smuggler, after all, but the Falcon’s next captain didn’t care much about appearances.
For the scruffy-looking Han Solo, it was all about speed. Punch it! In order to smuggle contraband across the Galaxy, he tricked out his ride with some extremely illegal modifications. I don’t know WHERE this ship came from, but it is NOT within the set parameters for a civilian transport. Once Han won the ship, he replaced the engines with an overclocked new hyperdrive, salvaged armor and gun emplacements from Imperial destroyers, and stuffed it full of secret compartments and hideaway blaster cannons. The result is a vessel with the speed and maneuverability of a small attack fighter, with the shields and firepower of a slow-moving dreadnaught. Now, all those alterations come at a cost. The Falcon’s engines are second to none, but they’re also less reliable than in-flight wifi. And it certainly isn’t much to look at, either. But the ugliness is actually kind of a feature, You came in that thing? You’re braver than I thought.
I mean, if you’re an Imperial officer on the lookout for the fastest smuggling ship ever made, you’re probably gonna let a flying trash heap slide under the radar. There’s some real-world reasoning behind the Falcon’s foul appearance, too. George Lucas has a well-documented obsession with hot rods, it’s basically what launched his career with ‘American Graffiti.’ Within the hot rod scene, there’s a sub-genre called rat rods, stripped-down, raw vehicles that were intentionally designed to be as ugly as they were powerful, just like the Falcon. What a piece of junk! She might look like crap, but as Han says, she’s got it where it counts, kid. Not everyone in the ‘Star Wars’ galaxy appreciates the Falcon, but in ours, it’s had a massive Influence.
Before ‘Star Wars,’ we mostly thought of sci-fi spaceships as shiny chrome rockets from serials like ‘Flash Gordon.’ They’re impressive in a showroom-car kind of way, but they didn’t look or feel like things people actually drove. The Falcon, on the other hand, is ugly and weathered and aged. it’s the the used car of sci-fi, and everyone’s owned a used car. That’s kinda why people love it so much, it’s not the pristine Enterprise or the sterile Discovery, it’s a broken-down bucket of bolts. You can see the authenticity in every oil stain and blaster scar, and it tells you a lot about the characters behind the wheel. The ‘used future’ aesthetic had a massive impact on science fiction, from the filthy space truckers of ‘Alien’ to ‘Blade Runner’s’ grimy future L.A. But none of that would have been possible without ‘Star Wars,’ the Falcon, and her crew.
From fictional vessels like Joss Whedon’s Serenity, to real-world spacecraft like Elon Musk’s ‘Falcon’ rockets, which are named in honor of Han’s flying heap. In the ‘Star Wars’ galaxy, the Millennium Falcon is nearly a century old, but its legacy in the real world could last even longer.
Also published on Medium.