Han Solo Almost Appeared as a Ten-Year-Old in Revenge of the Sith

Wednesday, 27 January 2016 - 11:59AM
Star Wars
Wednesday, 27 January 2016 - 11:59AM
Han Solo Almost Appeared as a Ten-Year-Old in Revenge of the Sith
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Anakin Skywalker and Boba Fett may have nearly been ruined by the Star Wars prequels, but through all that, there was one fan favorite character who remained intact: Han Solo, mostly because he didn't appear. Apparently, George Lucas nearly included everyone's favorite rogue pilot as a ten-year-old, and ruined his backstory in the process.

According to the Revenge of the Sith art-of book (via Den of Geek), Han was originally scripted to appear as a child wandering on Chewbacca's home planet, Kashyyyk. He would have uttered a single, kind of anticlimactic, line to Yoda: "I found part of a transmitter droid near the east bay. I think it's still sending and receiving signals," to which Yoda would have responded, "Good, good. Track this we can back to the source. Find General Grievous, we might…"

And here's the kicker: Han Solo was being raised by Chewbacca as his adoptive son on Kashyyyk. 

Opening quote
"It's not in the script anymore," explained concept artist Iain McCaig, "but we were told that Han Solo was on Kashyyyk and that he was being raised by Chewbacca. He's such a persnickety guy later on – he always has to have the best of everything – so I thought it'd be great if when he was a kid, he was an absolute slob."
Closing quote

This not only would have been at odds with the Expanded Universe version of their first encounter, before the whole EU was officially scrapped years later, but it just wouldn't have made sense for the characters or the Star Wars mythology. Chewbacca and Han act more like buddies than father-and-son; in fact, if anyone seems to have more power in the relationship, it's Han, as their original backstory involved Chewbacca swearing loyalty to Han after Han saved him from slavery. There hasn't been official confirmation that this is a part of their backstory, but there's an upcoming Aftermath novel called Life Debt by Chuck Wendig, and we'd be willing to bet that this will re-establish the life debt aspect of the relationship.

The cameo got as far as the concept art stage, but then was scrapped before the casting process had even started. This is probably for the best, as fans likely would not have taken well to seeing an insubstantial cameo from a young Han Solo. But then again, they loved it when Darth Vader was turned into a snot-nosed brat, so what do I know?

The next Star Wars film will be Rogue One, coming out on December 16, followed by Episode VIII in December 2017, the Han Solo prequel film in 2018, and Episode IX in 2019. Disney chairman Bob Iger also confirmed yesterday to BBC that there will definitely be further Star Wars films after the planned trilogy, as if it were ever in any doubt.
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