Now that Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is out and Star Wars: Episode VIII has finished filming, Disney and Lucasfilm can focus on the next movie they have set in a galaxy far, far away. That happens to the be the young Han Solo spin-off, and as production nears, the cast is starting to fill out. Now it looks like Woody Harrelson may be the next big name to join the Star Wars universe.
A report from Variety claims that Woody Harrelson is in early negotiations with Lucasfilm for a role in the upcoming Han SoloStar Wars spinoff. According to their sources, he will be playing something of a mentor to the legendary smuggler. The report notes that this is still in the very early stages, but he appears to be the studio's top choice for the part. Variety states that executives wanted an actor with "considerable clout" and that they have been meeting with several big names over the past few weeks.
The report didn't name who any of the other actors were, but apparently Woody Harrelson was the one that they liked the most. As far as "clout" goes, he certainly seems to have it as of late. This year he starred in several major movies, including Now You See Me 2, Triple 9, LBJ and The Edge of Seventeen. Triple 9 was met with mixed reception and didn't do much at the box office, but outside of that his other three offerings this year were all successes to some degree. Now You See Me 2 did very well at the box office and The Edge of Seventeen was heralded by critics and has been in the awards season conversation.
2017 doesn't look to be slowing down at all for Woody Harrelson either. He will be starring in The Glass Castle with Oscar winner Brie Larson, but perhaps most notably, he is set to appear as the villain in the highly-anticipated War for the Planet of the Apes. Woody Harrelson also definitely seems like the kind of guy who could play a semi-scummy mentor to a smuggler who dabbles in things on the wrong side of the law, as Han Solo does. His previous work in movies like No Country For Old Men and oddly enough something like Kingpin would definitely support that idea.
Little has been revealed about Han Solo: A Star Wars Story right now, but we do know that The LEGO Movie and 21 Jump Street directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller are directing and that Alden Ehrenreich is set to play Han Solo. In addition, Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke has been cast as the female lead, but her character hasn't been identified yet, and Donald Glover has been cast as a young Lando Calrissian. It has also been said that the movie will take place about ten years before the events of Star Wars: A New Hope and that Chewbacca will be in it, which only makes sense.
If Woody Harrelson does wind up landing the role, the cast for this movie is certainly shaping up to be interesting and fairly diverse in terms of the kinds of talent Disney and Lucasfilm are pursuing for it. As of right now the Han Solo movie is slated for a May 25, 2018, release date, but recent reports have suggested that Disney is looking to move it to December 2018, following the successes of both Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. We'll be sure to keep you updated as more information becomes available.