It was confirmed yesterday that Woody Harrelson has signed onto co-star in Han Solo: A Star Wars Story. His exact character has not yet been revealed, but we do know that he will be a mentor to the title character played by Alden Ehrenreich. Now, Harrelson is opening up just ever so slightly about what it is he's doing in the Star Wars universe. And he's not necessarily a 'good guy'.
Harrelson was speaking with Mashable when the subject of his Han Solo movie came up. He's been out and about promoting his directorial debut Lost in London, but everyone would rather know more about his role as Han's father figure. Harrelson played a somewhat similar mentor role in The Hunger Games. But this guy will be more of a scoundrel. He says this about joining that galaxy far, far away.
"I'm a mentor to Han, but I'm also a bit of a criminal. I don't think I'll have a lot of make-up or anything. We'll see how that look develops. I'm meeting with those guys tomorrow, the hair and make-up and stunts and everything. We'll just have a little discussion about that."
Woody Harrelson is known for his wide-ranging roles in film and TV such as The Hunger Games, No County For Old Men, True Detective, Cheers, and Zombieland. In Han Solo, he will join actors Alden Ehrenreich as Han Solo, Donald Glover as Young Lando Calrissian, and Emilia Clarke, whom some heavily speculate may be playing a female wookie in this space adventure. This Star Wars Story is the second in a series of films that live outside the Skywalker family saga, and is set during the early scoundrel days of the iconic characters, prior to A New Hope. Said the film's directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller yesterday when Woody was official cast.
"We couldn't be more excited to work with an artist with as much depth and range as Woody. His ability to find both humor and pathos, often in the same role, is truly unique. He is also very good at ping pong."
It is believed that Harrelson is either playing Garris Shrike, or a character closely based on this space pirate. Garris is credited for teaching Han Solo how to fly and shoot like a scoundrel. Just as Kylo Ren (aka Ben Organa) is constructed from the cloth that made up Han and Leia's son Jacen Solo from the Legends books, so might Han Solo's new mentor.
Han Solo may be taking a cue from Oliver Twist, with Han Solo being raised as an orphan by this Garris Shrike-inspired individual. In the older books, Han Solo helped make up a band of merry orphans who robbed people. Garris was like the family's sci-fi version of Fagan to Solo's Artful Dodger.
Shrike first appeared in the A.C. Crispin Star Wars novel The Paradise Snare, where Garris serves as Han Solo's entry point into a world of crime. Therein lies a ready made plot for directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller and their screenwriters Jake and Jon Kasdan to curb from. Han Solo is said to take place roughly ten years before A New Hope. Which makes since for The Paradise Snare. In the book, Shrike catches up with Han Solo nearly a decade after they last saw each other. Shrike has come to collect the bounty on his old pupil, but things don't turn out well for the old man. He is most certainly no Obi-Wan Kenobi. You can check out Woody Harrelson's chat in the video below.