Han Solo’s backstory and Chewbacca’s name might have just changed. A new innocuous featurette trailer for Solo: A Star Wars Story seems to have casually just dropped a few spoilery twists for the upcoming movie. Here’s what both of these new developments might mean. Possible spoilers ahead.
On Sunday, Lucasfilm released a new featurette trailer called “Becoming Solo.” In it, director Ron Howard and screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan talk shop about what kind of hero’s journey Han is going through in the movie and suggest that we’ll see multiple “tests” and “challenges” that result in the scoundrel we’re all familiar with in A New Hope and beyond. But, more revealing than anything Kasdan or Howard talk about is the copious amounts of new footage from the movie. Specifically, a scene that might establish what Han’s job was when he worked for the Empire, and another one which suggests Chewbacca’s name is just a rough approximation of whatever his real name might be in the language Shyriiwook.
Was Han an AT-ST Driver for the Empire?
At a few points in the trailer, we see Han in what looks like the uniform of an AT-ST driver. The AT-ST’s are the little two-legged “chicken walkers” mostly famous from the big battles in Return of the Jedi. Now, at one point in the new footage, it looks like Han and the criminal mastermind Becket are all wearing Imperial uniforms, implying they are undercover. But, we also know that Han probably worked for the Empire at some point in the past, based only on the very first trailer. So what’s up here? Han says he’s a “driver” in nearly all the trailers. Does this mean he was an AT-ST driver for the Empire, went AWOL, became a criminal, and then later used that knowledge to impersonate an Imperial AT-ST driver later? Could this be one huge aspect of the plot? We’ll have to see!
Is Chewbacca’s real name not Chewbacca?
In one hilarious snippet, Chewbacca tells Han his name is his native roaring Wookiee language, Shyriiwook. Han shakes his head and says “You’re going to need a nickname because I ain’t saying that every time.” So what does this mean? Is Han just referring to the fact that he calls Chewbacca “Chewie” a lot? Is he objecting to the name Chewbacca? Or is Chewbacca itself the nickname? If so, that would mean Chewie has two nicknames, and that Chewie is a nickname of a nickname.
All will probably be explained on May 25 when Solo hits theaters. Then again, because there are rumored to be two more Han Solo movies after this one, some aspects of Han, Lando and Chewbacca’s collective past might still remain a secret.