Since the announcement by LucasFilm that there was going to be a young Han Solo movie, there has been speculation as to who could fill this iconic role. When fans think of Han Solo, they see Harrison Ford. Which actor would be able to pull off that cocky smile, swagger, and charisma that has come to be synonymous with Han Solo? There had been rumors and speculation that Hail, Caesar! actor Alden Ehrenreich was in talks with LucasFilm for the role but no official announcement had been made. Until now. This weekend, London is playing host to Star Wars Celebration and during the “Future Filmmakers” panel the casting decision was confirmed to a crowd of over 4,000 fans.
The decision to cast Ehrenreich was not taken lightly. Directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller explained that over 3,000 actors from around the world had been auditioned. Ironically enough Ehrenreich was “literally the first person to walk through the door” according to Miller. Despite that, the future rouge smuggler had to audition for six months and even performing screen test on the Millennium Falcon with none other than Chewbacca. It was important to the directors that those two have excellent chemistry since the story revolves exclusively around them.
Fans concerned about the casting can take comfort in knowing the role wasn’t just handed out. In response to questions about taking on such an iconic role, Ehrenreich has said that the experience has been “more exciting than nerve-racking.” With confidence like that it is easy to imagine what the casting directors saw in him.
The as yet untitled Hal Solo anthology will be written by Lawrence Kasdan and Jon Kasdan and will be a standalone “Star Wars Story” starring a early twenty something Han. Filming is planned for the end of January/early February in the U.K. It is set for release in May of 2018 following the release of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story in 2016 and Star Wars: Episode VIII in 2017.