This Ends Star Wars' Han Shot First Debate Once And For All

Ever since George Lucas made an attempt to improve on perfection by creating the Special Editions of the original Star Wars trilogy, he successfully made more enemies than friends. Among all of the visually impressive new effects that he added, there was a single digital effect, a lone laser blast, that set off fans throughout the world. Suddenly, without warning, Han Solo shot Greedo in self-defense. Since then, the question of who shot first has been a hotly debated topic among Star Wars fans. Now, we appear to have the definitive answer. Chewbacca knows who shot first, and he has the script to prove it.

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For the last couple of weeks, actor Peter Mayhew has been posting a few pages at a time from his original Star Wars script to Twitter. Today, he posted the pages that deal with the infamous scene. For the record, there is zero mention of Greedo firing a shot. Not only does Han Solo shoot Greedo down, he does so in the middle of a quip. While the script does include a longer exchange between Greedo (simply called "Alien" here) and Han, one where Greedo strongly implies that he is going to kill Han, it seems fairly clear that the only shot fired comes from Solo. There is no mention of the bounty hunter somehow being missed at point blank range.

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At this point, it seems that the only living person who thinks that Greedo shooting first is a good thing is George Lucas himself. He has, in the past, claimed that Greedo always shot first, but that the way the scene was filmed we just never saw it. We’ve heard people who claimed to have access to the script claim otherwise but this is the first time we’ve actually seen the real thing from a reliable source.

It seems that over the years George Lucas really warmed up to Han Solo as a character. He’s compared him to John Wayne, which is why he ultimately wanted to have Han shoot second, because The Duke never shot first, either. While this is a noble idea, the fact is that the entire point of Han Solo’s character arc is that he starts out as a scoundrel who only cares about himself and his money, but slowly comes to care about the rebels that he helps. Seeing Han Solo come to the rescue at the end is all the more special because he’s supposed to be the last guy who would make that choice. You always know that John Wayne is going to come to the rescue.

While we don’t think anybody really believes that Greedo shot first, if those people somehow do exist, hopefully, this will put that argument to bed forever. Now, if we can just get a Blu-Ray version of the film that matches the script.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.