By now you’ve heard all about the troubled production of Solo: A Star Wars Story. About halfway through filming, co-directors Chris Miller and Phil Lord were fired because of creative differences. Director Ron Howard was then brought on as an emergency backup—an unenviable task if there ever was one. Needless to say, the odds are stacked against the film.
Just three months before its release, Lucasfilm released two teasers, finally giving fans a glimpse at what to expect. There’s a lot going on, from the mysterious locations to hints at Solo’s feral upbringing. As with anything new, more questions are raised than answers given. Like, does this movie need to exist?
The vibe, visuals, and style all seem to be right. If Lucasfilm can deliver on the promise of an Ocean’s 11 style heist movie without the baggage of the Force, then it will have all been worth it. If anything, at least we have Donald Glover looking regal as hell as Lando Calrissian.
Here are five reasons why we’re excited about Solo: A Star Wars Story.
The Falcon looks way different
From its pristine halls to the additional plating, the Millennium Falcon looks way different. Which has us wondering, why did Han make so many modifications? And why does he not clean the inside every once and a while? I guess when there’s a galaxy-wide civil war, cleanliness isn’t a priority. It’s certainly not the hunk of junk we see in A New Hope.
As one of the franchise’s most iconic ships, the Falcon will play a big part in the upcoming movie. We’re expecting to see it (probably) make the Kessel Run in less than twelve parsecs, and based on the new footage, we’ll see it undergo some pretty big changes, from a new freight mandible to yet another communications dish.
“Thought we were in trouble there for a second, but it’s fine,” Han says. “We’re fine.”
Han joins the empire?
In the trailer released during Super Bowl LII, it’s hinted that Han tried joining the empire in the hopes of becoming a polite. But, as Han says, he was “kicked out of the flight academy for having a mind of my own.” Either that, or Han is trying to infiltrate the Empire to pull of some sort of heist.
In the old Expanded Universe, Han flees Imperial rule after helping Chewbacca escape captivity. It’s very likely we’ll see something like that play out on the big screen. So, like Finn in The Force Awakens, we could see Han have second thoughts about the Empire before quickly defecting.
New vehicles, characters, aliens, and more
Similar to what Lucasfilm did with Rogue One, Solo is set to introduce a number of new vehicles, characters, worlds, and aliens. In fact, we may see Solo introduce the biggest creature yet seen in a Star Wars movie, rivaling the Exogorth seen in The Empire Strikes Back.
Among the new characters is Qi’ra (Emilia Clarke) and Tobias Beckett (Woody Harrelson). We also get a glimpse at Thandie Newton’s mysterious character, and a droid who is supposedly being played by an actor named Phoebe Waller-Bridge. The trailers also tease a new class of Stormtrooper, possibly known as Range Troopers, and a Boba Fett-type character who I already know I’ll love.
Additionally, we get a glimpse at a new variant of TIE fighter, along with a gigantic alien creature with tentacles. By featuring so many new characters, aliens, vehicles, and worlds, it makes Solo feels distinct from everything we’ve seen before it.
I already know Donald Glover is going to steal every scene he’s in in Solo. Originally portrayed by Billy Dee Williams, Lando rises in the same circles as Han, eventually becoming Baron Administrator of Cloud City. But before we see him betray Han (against his will), we’ll see how Lando earns his reputation in the underground and comes to own the Millennium Falcon.
The western vibe
We already knew Solo would feature a heavy Western influence, and the trailer delivers on that promise. Part of that has to do with Han’s cavalier attitude. But the visuals really promote the throwback feel, with Han walking into a saloon, dueling, and fighting atop a train. Beckett also wears a knee-length coat reminiscent of old gunslingers, hammering the point across even more.
It really fits within Han’s ethos as a smuggler and scoundrel. It’s nice that we’re going to explore the seedier side of the galaxy, rather than the larger galactic battle or Luke using the Force. Rogue One prodded similar territory, but Solo will likely go all-in.
It releases on May 25
It’s crazy to think Solo: A Star Wars Story is coming out in just a few short months. Given the amount of drama during production, fans are rightfully concerned about how the final product will turn out. But, based on the early teasers, Solo will live up to the franchise’s lofty standards.
Of course, people are skeptical a movie about Han Solo needs to exist in the first place. But it will be cool to explore a different side of Star Wars and see what made Han into the legendary scoundrel we all know and love.