On May 25, 2018, everyone's favorite galactic smuggler will return the silver screen in an as-yet-untitled Han Solo Star Wars movie. And for the first time in ANY Star Wars movie, the beloved scoundrel will be played by an actor not named Harrison Ford. At Star Wars Celebration in London this afternoon, co-directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller took to the main stage to talk about their anticipated Han Solo movie... and in the process, they revealed who will be playing him.
As has been rumored for weeks now, Hail, Caesar! Star Alden Ehrenreich nabbed the part of a young Han Solo in the spinoff movie, as was confirmed today from the stage at Celebration. The actor turned heads earlier this year as a member of Joel and Ethan Coen's screwball comedy, which poked great fun at the Hollywood studio system. But his credits -- prior to joining this project, set in a galaxy far, far away -- include the YA adaptation of Beautiful Creatures, Woody Allen's Blue Jasmine, and the chilling Stoker.
Prior to Alden Ehrenreich's reveal, Phil Lord and Chris Miller described the arduous task of finding someone to fill Harrison Ford's massive boots -- and equally massive vest -- for the role of Han solo. Throughout the rigorous casting process they found themselves traveling all over, going to acting schools and (possibly joking) even checking out a few cowboy bars to find someone who could capture the energy, charisma, and all-around badass persona that Ford brought to the role in each and every one of his appearances as Han Solo. In the end it looks like Ehrenreich represented the best of those options.
However, there's a certain underlying irony to the casting of Alden Ehrenreich as Corellian smuggler Han Solo. Not only have we pretty much assumed that he would take on the role for some time -- Lord and Miller remark upon the fact that it's probably the worst kept secret in Hollywood right now -- but Ehrenreich was also the first actor to even audition for the role. They spent an ungodly amount of time and money testing out other actors, but at the end of the day they ended up going with the first choice; they even apologized to Kathleen Kennedy for wasting time and money, although she said she would simply deduct the cost from their respective salaries.
That being said, Alden Ehrenreich's audition still sounds like a downright awesome (if intimidating) experience. Not only did they have him come in to read for the part, but they actually put him inside the Millennium Falcon and had him read opposite Chewbacca in order to make sure he could absolutely nail the part. The young up-and-comer would go on to admit that he had never acted beside a wookie before, and the experience felt undeniably "cool." That's putting it mildly, Mr. Ehrenreich.
We will keep you up to date with any and all relevant information related to the upcoming Han Solo spinoff movie as more news breaks. The film is expected to begin filming at the end of January or early February of next year.
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Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. Sean created ReelBlend, which he proudly cohosts with Jake Hamilton and Kevin McCarthy. And he's the author of RELEASE THE SNYDER CUT, the Spider-Man history book WITH GREAT POWER, and an upcoming book about Bruce Willis.