How Solo: A Star Wars Story Was Influenced By Indiana Jones

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When it was intimated that Solo: A Star Wars Story would feature the infamous Kessel Run, there came a collective groan from a universe of Star Wars fans that could be heard all the way in the Outer Rim. Never since 1977 had the Kessel Run needed to be explained and the confusion over how Han, Chewie and the Millenium Falcon completed it in 12 Parsecs fuelled many a theory. Mainly as it was acknowledged that the Parsec was a unit of distance, not of time.

Well, be confused no longer, as it’s all seen on screen in the latest Anthology pic and is no doubt someway to blame for the movie’s underwhelming box office returns. But in something of a neat twist, it’s also this which is responsible for turning the fastest ship in the galaxy into what Luke Skywalker later dubs a “piece of junk.”

In navigating the Kessel Run (essentially a highly hazardous shipping channel), our heroes must contend with Imperial Blockades, extreme storms and carbon-bergs. But it’s the “Space-o-pus” (as it’s affectionately known) that’s most memorable. Whereas the creature itself is reminiscent of the “there’s always a bigger fish” sequence from Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, its demise is more striking than the majority of that movie.

The Gravity Well that essentially saves the Falcon by sucking the Space-o-pus in conjures images of another of George Lucas’ heroes, and in a recent interview, Lucasfilm’s design supervisor, James Clyne, recalled the production meeting:

“Well, what if in true ‘80s Indiana Jones fashion, his skin just gets ripped off and we see his skull?’ And everybody was like, ‘Oh, that’s disgusting, James!’”

Luckily though, it disgusted and delighted Solo: A Star Wars Story director Ron Howard in equal measure, and the callback to Raiders of the Lost Ark’s melting Nazi pays back the debt for Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom‘s Club Obi Wan nod.

Source: Star Wars

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