Star Wars’ George Lucas Weighed In On The Infamous Han Shooting First Scene

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The Star Wars franchise has entertained moviegoers for decades, with the galaxy far, far away being passed down among generations. But regardless of how much the property has changed over the years, there's one debate that continues to plague the fandom. Namely, who shot first? Was it Greedo or Han? This discussion is a deep dive into Harrison Ford's character, and George Lucas himself recently weighed in on the hotly discussed subject.

When Han Solo is first introduced in Star Wars: A New Hope, we see the scruffy looking nerf herder in the Mos Eisley cantina. He ends up having a confrontation with Greedo, where the alien is killed by Han's blaster. Debate has long raged regarding who shot first, as the movie's re-release in the '90s altered the original scene. And in a new book titled The Star Wars Archives: 1999-2005, George Lucas offered his own opinion, saying:

I never designed Han to be a ruthless killer. All the good guys shoot in self-defense. When I edited the scene in 1977 you couldn’t tell who does what.

Well, there you have it. It looks like George Lucas doesn't believe that Han Solo shot first in that now infamous sequence from Star Wars: A New Hope. Harrison Ford's pilot/rebel doesn't kill for sport, and instead only fires his signature blaster in self-defense. This was an important aspect of the character for the filmmaker, which is why it's his belief that Greedo actually shot first.

The above comments from The Star Wars Archives: 1999-2005 (via Polygon), and has the potential to put an end to the long standing debate about Han and Greedo. George Lucas is the man who created both characters, and directed the first two trilogies from the franchise. As a result, he's seemingly the most valued source of information regarding A New Hope and its contents.

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While George Lucas has made his thoughts known, there will still be plenty of Star Wars fans who will maintain that Han Solo was the first one to shoot, and kill Greedo in the process. It makes the character a bit more ruthless, and only adds to the fan favorite's overall badassery. And considering how the editing was originally a bit more ambiguous, franchise purists will side with the OG version of the sequence.

George Lucas and company made a variety of changes to the original Star Wars trilogy when the movies were remastered in the 1990's. New creatures were added including a sequence with Jabba in A New Hope, although not all of these changes were well received by the fandom. This is especially true for the fans who saw the original trilogy during its initial theatrical run.

It should be interesting to see what comes next for the Star Wars franchise. With the nine-film Skywalker Saga in the rear view, any future movies have the freedom to be disconnected from the main narrative. And in the meantime, the property continues to grow thanks to live-action series on Disney+.

The Mandalorian is currently in the midst of Season 2 on Disney+. Be sure to check out our 2020 release list to plan your next movie experience.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.