Spoilers ahead for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker!
It's almost hard to believe, but the Skywalker Saga ended nearly two months ago. J.J. Abrams' Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker wrapped up the nine-film franchise, attempting to give a satisfying ending to the galaxy's many beloved characters. Abrams brought back the trio of classic heroes through one way or another, including Harrison Ford's Han Solo. And Ford recently explained the simple way he was convinced to return for one more scene.
Han Solo died back in The Force Awakens, with his son Ben Solo murdering him in an attempt to cement himself as Kylo Ren. It seemed like we'd seen the last of Harrison Ford's signature Star Wars character, but The Rise of Skywalker surprised us with a dream/vision of Han with Ben. When asked how J.J. Abrams convinced him to return, Ford said:
J.J. said 'This is a good idea, I J.J. have decided that this is a good idea and I would like you to do it.'
Well, that was easy. It looks like J.J. Abrams didn't have to pitch Harrison Ford something fancy or wordy. He simply stated that he had a good idea, and Ford trusted him enough to go for the ride.
Harrison Ford's comments seem to show how much he respects J.J. Abrams as a director, especially after working with him so closely on The Force Awakens. The first installment in the sequel trilogy was very much focused on Han Solo's perspective, as he became a mentor and father figure to Daisy Ridley's Rey. He got a ton of screen time, as well as the most tragic death of recent Star Wars memory.
When promoting his new movie The Call of the Wild on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, the host eventually broached the subject of Star Wars. Because how could you not? When hearing how simple it was to convince Harrison Ford to appear in The Rise of Skywalker, Kimmel believed he must have trusted Abrams quite a bit. To which Ford responded,
Pretty charming stuff for a scruffy looking nerf herder. Harrison Ford appears to be a fan of J.J. Abrams and his vision for the Star Wars franchise. And given their working relationship, that makes a great deal of sense. Abrams was the man who brought new life to the Star Wars franchise, creating characters like Rey, Finn, Poe, and Kylo Ren.
Jimmy Kimmel did joke about how much Harrison Ford was ready to be killed off in the Star Wars franchise. He famously asked George Lucas for Han to die back in Empire Strikes Back, and he eventually got his wish when Ben stabbed his father in The Force Awakens. When asked about his history with the franchise, Ford explained this saying:
You're putting a different complexion on it all. I figured that his utility had been exhausted, bled out, and I was willing to die for the cause. To bring some gravitas.
It seems that Harrison Ford thought Han Solo's story came to a close. So he was all too happy to be killed off to add some stakes and dramatic tension to the new trilogy. It was indeed a devastating moment, and started a trend that saw a classic hero die in every movie that followed.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is still in theaters now. Be sure to check out our 2020 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.