As a young kid, I watched the Star Wars films so many times that I became as interested in the things I didn’t know as I was in the things I did. What was Boba Fett’s story? What would the Jedi have been like in their prime? Who were Leia’s parents? How did C-3PO not know everything? However, one of the great, early, Star Wars mysteries for me centered around Jabba the Hutt. What was Han Solo carrying for Jabba that was so precious that by dumping it on his famous Kessel Run he incurred Jabba’s wrath and a rather large bounty?
Of course, Lucasfilm’s Special Edition of A New Hope helped answer that (as did the novel Rebel Dawn), but those came later and left me wondering. To be honest, a lot of Han Solo’s story was intentionally vague and left us all imagining how he ended up becoming the charming rogue we all loved so much. The announcement of a Han Solo film gave us hope that some of the vagueness of the character might be cleared up and now it seems that my long-standing wish to see just how Solo won a race by going a record-setting shorter distance could potentially be met. Word is that Jabba the Hutt will be making an appearance in the Han Solo film!
While this information came before the recent shake-up on the film, we believe that the new changes won’t have any effect on the storyline. As a result of so-called “Creative Differences,” Lord and Miller have been fired from the production and Hollywood favorite, Ron Howard has been tapped to finish out production. After a short break to catch Howard up to speed, production will resume on the final 3 weeks of principle photography, followed by about 6 weeks of pickups and reshoots. It should be noted that the reshoots were already built into the schedule and while some of that time will most likely be used to make the changes wanted by the studio, reshoots are extremely common and are almost always built into the production schedule.
The film, which began production in January under the working title Red Cup, isn’t expected to be so much an origin story for Solo, but more about “what formed the person we meet in the cantina,” in A New Hope, according to co-writer Lawrence Kasdan. We know it’s going to explore “an event or events” from his past that led him to become known to his buddy Lando Calrissian (played in the new film by Donald Glover) as a “slimy, double-crossing, no-good swindler.” With the inclusion of Jabba the Hutt in the film, maybe it’s not too much to ask that those events include the dumping some cargo and the Kessel Run. Either way, Jabba’s presence is sure to add some more depth to his already complex relationship with Han.
The Hutt’s have an interesting history in the Star Wars films, with the original Jabba being a man before being cut from A New Hope. When we actually met Jabba in 1993’s Return of the Jedi, he was a $500,000 puppet and he looked pretty darn good for the time. Over the Hutts, including Jabba in the Special Edition, were replaced with CGI and it never really looked just right. It seems that Lucasfilm agrees as we hear that Jabba will appear in this film as an animatronic puppet. It’s hard to imagine that decision was made lightly, so a new generation will see a younger, more handsome Jabba the way he was originally intended by the maker.
Han Solo is scheduled for release in 2018.