Does Solo: A Star Wars Story Include A Nod To Empire Strikes Back?

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Ask any Star Wars enthusiast to name their favorite movie and they’ll likely point you in the direction of Empire Strikes Back.

Irvin Kershner’s sci-fi masterstroke took the fledgling franchise to new heights in 1980, all the while raising the bar for movie sequels across the industry. It also delivered one of the most devastating and far-reaching cliffhangers in the history of cinema, as Luke Skywalker learned the horrible truth: Darth Vader, prince of darkness and masked ruler of the Galactic Empire, really was his father, after all. Talk about pulling the rug out from under us all.

Fast forward to 2018, though, and it appears the spirit of Empire Strikes Back is alive and well, as it’s seemingly informed the final moments of Solo: A Star Wars Story‘s teaser trailer. Once the first-look preview introduces Alden Ehrenreich’s loveable scoundrel, we see the Millennium Falcon whizzing through a dense space storm. To make matters worse, there’s a tendriled beast threatening to sink its teeth into the freighter, leaving many to wonder whether this scene is actually a subtle nod to Empire.

As you’ll no doubt remember, Kershner’s classic sent the Millennium Falcon through an asteroid field in order to escape the Imperial fleet. While there, Han and the gang – namely Chewie and Lando, two characters who will be back for Solo – seek shelter in an asteroid cave, only to realize that it’s actually the stomach of a huge space worm known as an exogorth.

Of course, this is likely just a coincidence, as we imagine there is more than one space worm populating the Star Wars galaxy. Besides, the beast in Empire appeared to be a Tremors-like cave dweller, whereas the one glimpsed in Solo: A Star Wars Story is much larger and more aggressive.

Elsewhere, we also have confirmation that Thandie Newton (Westworld) and Phoebe Waller-Bridge will be playing Val and a droid called L3-37, respectively. That ought to debunk any rumors that Newton’s bounty hunter was actually Sana Starros, the wife of Han Solo, while we’re fully confident that Waller-Bridge’s droid serves as co-pilot to Lando before he ultimately loses the Millennium Falcon over a game of Sabacc.

Expect all this (and much more!) to feature once Solo: A Star Wars Story lights up theaters on May 25th.

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