Wasn’t Harrison Ford great in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, everyone? A legendary actor once again playing his most legendary role. But while Ford accepts praise for his portrayal of the older, but not remotely frail, Han Solo, the corporate overlords that own the rights to the character at Lucasfilm and the Walt Disney Company are currently looking for a younger model Han Solo to star in the second standalone Star Wars movie following Rogue One. From many, comes one, or at least in this case a dozen or so. Sources are telling one Hollywood trade that there’s now a short list for the new Han Solo, and the reason for the immediacy of casting the part may be surprising.
According to Variety, the list of potentials to play a young version of the Corellian smuggler is down to around a dozen, and there are some juicy names on that list. But why the urgent urgency? The as-yet-untitled Han Solo film isn’t scheduled for release until the Summer of 2018. “While insiders were unable to confirm, the new Solo could have a small cameo in Rogue One: A Star Wars before appearing in his own standalone pic,” Variety reported.
Such a move would not be out of bounds. Remember when Tom Holland was cast months in advance of the start of filming the new Spider-Man movie so that he can cameo in Captain America: Civil War? It seems kind of out there, the idea that a different actor would be playing Han Solo in a movie that takes place immediately before the original Star Wars, but it’s the kind of idea that sounds completely plausible in the context of modern franchise building. And why else would they be trying to hire an actor for a movie that likely won’t start production until this time next year?
So who are these potential rogues? Variety listed the following sampling in no particular order: Miles Teller (Whiplash), Ansel Elgort (Divergent), Dave Franco (21 Jump Street), Jack Reynor (Transformers: Age of Extinction), Scott Eastwood (Fury), Logan Lerman (Percy Jackson), Emory Cohen (Brooklyn) and Blake Jenner (Glee). Eastwood is the oldest candidate at 29, but apparently Disney/Lucasfilm tested hundreds of actors between the ages of 18 and 34 to get this far.
Whoever plays him, the solo Han Solo movie, directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller, is scheduled to be in theaters everywhere on May 25, 2018.