Updated: Woody Harrelson has been confirmed by Lucasfilm to have a role in the Han Solo spinoff. Here’s what they said:
“We couldn’t be more excited to work with an artist with as much depth and range as Woody. His ability to find both humor and pathos, often in the same role, is truly unique.”
The next Star Wars anthology film will finally peer into the life of the legendary smuggler and all-around stuck up, half-witted, scruffy-looking nerf herder before he joined the Rebel Alliance. The film will star Alden Ehrenreich as a young Han Solo, with Donald Glover playing Lando Calrissian and Emilia Clarke as the currently unnamed female lead.
Variety is reporting that Woody Harrelson is in early talks to join the film as a mentor figure for the Phil Lord and Chris Miller directed spinoff film. According to their sources Harrelson emerged as the front runner with The Hollywood Reporter writer Borys Kit saying that Christian Bale was originally their first pick for the role.
True that Disney & Lucasfilm wanted someone big for HAN SOLO…before Woody Harrelson, CHRISTIAN BALE was the other big name in the mix.
— Borys Kit (@Borys_Kit) January 3, 2017
While talks are still early, it’s pretty certain that at least we’ll be getting a mentor figure in the Han Solo film. The big question now is who could he be playing?
If you go by the now non-canonical Legends books, there are the two front runners of Garris Shrike and Alexsandr Badure. Both of which acted as mentor figures in those novels, but because Lucasfilm is free to ignore them, it is just as likely that a new character is being created for the role.
Should Lucasfilm go with a new character it is possible that Harrelson may be playing Solo senior. Considering all the daddy issues present in the original trilogy, The Force Awakens, and Rogue One it isn’t a stretch. My personal belief is that the character will likely not be his father but still a brand new character.
A final possibility is, just like Rogue One brought Saw Gerrera from Star Wars: The Clone Wars to the big screen — so, too, could the Han Solo spinoff. The only character that would really fit, off the top of my head, would be the bounty hunter Cad Bane. That would mean Harrelson would be playing an alien, but I could see that character be a mentor like figure to Solo.
In other news, it looks like the film is also being delayed until December. According to Making Star Wars, Disney is now eyeing a December 13, 2018 release for the film instead of the previously announced May 25, 2018 premiere date. Considering The Force Awakens, Rogue One, and Episode VIII were all pushed from a May release to December, it seems pretty likely. Stay tuned.