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It’s always a bummer when you don’t nail the audition, no matter what the part is, but it probably sucks a lot worse when that audition is to be Han Solo. The lead role for the untitled Star Wars spin-off eventually went to Alden Ehrenreich (Hail, Caesar!) after a grueling casting process. And while that is great news for him, thousands of other actors had to face rejection. That’s show business for you, but one actor felt that he didn’t really get to show his stuff during the audition. That actor was Jack O’Connell, a young up and comer who definitely won’t get to be Han Solo.
Jack O’Connell is a young British actor who has appeared in dramas such as Angelina Jolie's Unbroken and the upcoming Money Monster with George Clooney and Julia Roberts. He was also one of the few lucky actors to make it onto the shortlist of candidates to play a young Han Solo in a Solo-centric spinoff film. Ultimately the role didn’t go to O’Connell, who seems to have been bothered by the casting process. While speaking with Yahoo! Movies about his role in Money Monster, O’Connell was able to drop some information about his audition.
The most frustrating thing is when you feel like your full potential hasn’t been recognized. Or, the imagination required for your potential to be recognized, isn’t necessarily there. And it’s very hard to convey all these things in one audition. But that’s the process, and I don’t think one individual will change that.
It sounds like, despite being on a short list of actors that included the likes of Dave Franco, Miles Teller, and Ansel Elgort, Jack O’Connell only got to audition once. I sympathize with the guy – most people can only dream about being Han Solo – but as an actor, it seems like it’s your job to show your A-game no matter how many tries you get. To say that the people who were casting lacked the imagination to see his potential suggests the fault wasn’t his own.
On the other hand, the casting process to find the right actor for Han Solo sounds like it was grueling. Apparently, over 2,500 actors auditioned for the role of the iconic smuggler. It’s probably exhausting listening to hundreds of actors read the same sides day after day; a few good actors are bound to fall through the cracks.
The Young Han Solo movie is still in pre-production and will be directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (21 Jump Street, The Lego Movie) from a script penned by the father-son duo of Lawrence and Jon Kasdan. The Han Solo-centric spin-off will release sometime in 2018.