In what is just the beginning of the avalanche of Star Wars news since Disney’s recent purchase of Lucasfilm, it now looks as if Harrison Ford is open to reprising the role of Han Solo in the planned sequel trilogy. We recently reported that Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher had met with George Lucas over the summer in order to discuss the possibility of continuing the Skywalker story. Now it looks as if Ford is willing to complete the trio as the films creep closer to the 2015 release date. There is still no confirmation as to who will be directing Star Wars: Episode VII, but signs are pointing towards Matthew Vaughn, who recently bowed out of helming X-Men: Days of Future Past without explanation. Hit the jump for more on Ford’s possible involvement and what this may mean for the plot of the upcoming trilogy.
EW reports that Ford is at least open to the idea of returning to the big screen in a Star Wars sequel, but has a bit of an odd contract stipulation. Ford wasn’t exactly fond of Solo, saying, “As a character he was not so interesting to me,” in a 2010 interview with ABC. Interestingly enough, Solo was originally scripted to die in Star Wars VI: Return of the Jedi, but his character was spared because the toys were selling so well.
“I thought he should have died in the last one to give it some bottom…George didn’t think there was any future in dead Han toys.”
A possible clause in his contract, should he reprise, could be a mandatory death scene for the fan-favorite smuggler. That’s likely less critical than the stipulation that a script and director be in place before Ford will sign on for anything. But at least he, Hamill and Fisher are reportedly upbeat about the idea of returning to the franchise.
The new trilogy would presumably pick up about twenty years after the end of the three original films. Building an entire arc around Ford (70), Hamill (62) and Fisher (forever 27) is probably not the best of ideas, but including the original stars in a hand-off to a new generation could be a way to appease the fans and inject some new life into the series. Ford’s interest in a reprisal is a bit odd considering his response at a recent screening of the film in which he reflected on his Star Wars days:
“I don’t know that I understood it very well. I’m not sure I understand it yet…I was very happy to be involved. I was pleased to be a part of an ensemble.”
But, then again, this is the same man who signed on for a fourth Indiana Jones film and possibly a fifth. I’m on the fence about including the original trio in a major arc for the sequel trilogy. While I wouldn’t mind seeing their stories wrapped up by way of a passing of the baton to new characters, I also wouldn’t bat an eyelash if we summed up the fates of Skywalker, Solo and Organa-Skywalker-Solo in the opening crawl or roll-up. I’m sure you have your own thoughts on this, so battle it out in the comments below: include the original cast, introduce brand new characters or do something in between?