The reason Han Solo had such a soft spot for Luke Skywalker when the hot-headed young man mouthed-off to him in a dirty bar on Tatooine was because Han probably saw a younger version of himself. New plot details for Solo: A Star Wars Story have revealed that the younger version of Han that we’ll meet in the movie is initially, not the jaded guy who shoots people under tables ten years later. In fact, this Han Solo maybe even be a little on the naive side of the Force.
On Wednesday, Entertainment Weekly began revealing details from their new cover story, all about Solo. And one telling detail focuses on exactly what kind of man Han Solo will be at the start of the movie and why that matters. “I think the main thing that’s different is that the Han we meet in this film is more of an idealist,” actor Alden Ehrenreich told EW. “He has certain dreams that he follows, and we watch how it affects him as those dreams meet new realities.” Ehrenreich couldn’t elaborate on exactly what Han’s dreams are exactly, but thinking of Han as an idealist will certainly make a few longtime Star Wars fans feel uncomfortable. Will we be able to handle a tender, wide-eyed Han Solo? Shouldn’t he always be grumpy and sarcastic?
“One of the things that really shapes him is that it takes place in a real dark underworld of the Star Wars universe,” Ehrenreich added, which meant the literal criminal environments, but seemingly a tonal shift for a Star Wars film, too. Shockingly, Star Wars films are often not about the character development of just one person, but instead, the various arcs of several characters at once. Plus, though the journey of Luke Skywalker is central to what happens in the original trilogy, the resolution for Luke (at least in Return of the Jedi) is simply to grow up. With Han Solo, it’s almost like Solo is setting him up to be a low-key Anakin SKywalker, or at least one we can relate to a little bit more.
In the original films, Han is constantly in debt and seems to be behind on a lot of his responsibilities. By the time of The Force Awakens, this hasn’t gotten better, in fact, it’s only gotten worse. You could say, that Han slid to the dark side a little bit, he’s not a bad person, but he’s not living his best life and he’s certainly unhappy. And unlike Anakin, most people can actually relate to the choices Han makes. After all, he’s not killing young Jedi knights and yelling about how much power he’s going to get some day.
Then again, Solo isn’t out yet. So, how much the young smuggler has in common with Luke or his father Anakin, remains to be seen. In any case, regardless of how Han gets jaded in Solo, the Star Wars franchise will keep one tradition going: angsty young men flying spaceships to work out all their emotional issues.
Solo: A Star Wars Story is out on May 25, 2018.