From Empire Strikes Back to a surprise cameo from [redacted], Ron Howard’s space western was undoubtedly steeped in the rich DNA of Star Wars, and it’s a credit to the Oscar-winning director that he was able to course-correct Lucasfilm’s second Anthology pic after coming in to replace Phil Lord and Chris Miller at the helm.
Though it seems Howard almost snuck another Easter egg into Solo – well, two, actually. As co-writer Jon Kasdan tells ComicBook.com, the Star Wars spinoff initially carved out room for Tag and Bink, two well-known characters from the Expanded Universe (aka Legends), only to remove them at the 11th hour.
One of the things we went back and forth on a lot is that both Larry [Kasdan, co-writer] and I felt that it was important to see Han in the Imperial Academy, in the Navy, because we wanted to see him become this pilot. And from the first draft through the last draft, there was a chunk of the movie — Very short. Like, I’d say 80 seconds long — That showed him in the Imperial Academy doing some sort of flight things, sort of disobeying a direct order, and getting kicked out.
It’s a scene that was deemed superfluous pretty early on, so it’s small wonder why Ron Howard and his creative team decided to cut Tag and Bink from Han’s solo adventure.
Jon Kasdan continued:
And as he’s getting kicked out, he’s being sort of moved out of the official courtroom by Tag and Bink, played by [me] and Toby Hefferman, our [first] AD. And we were certain that these scene was going to remain because it’s a crucial moment in his life. And it was the last thing to come out. It was heartbreaking.
Solo: A Star Wars Story is playing all across the galaxy right now, though after its soft opening weekend, word is Ron Howard’s standalone pic is headed for another tough spell at the domestic box office.