Earlier this year, word broke that Woody Harrelson signed on for the Han Solo stand alone film as Han’s mentor. And in perhaps a nod to the classic Star Wars Extended Universe, Harrelson himself confirmed his role as Garris Shrike, a character who mentored Han in one of the Star Wars novels. It’s pretty rare for an EU character to make the jump into the post-Disney Star Wars continuity—and as it turns out, it may not have happened this time. Today’s Nerdist News has the latest details on Harrelson’s character, and it’s not what anyone was expecting!
Join host and famed explorer of Kashyyyk, Jessica Chobot, as she breaks down Harrelson’s recent comments on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. When asked about his role in the Han Solo movie, Harrelson told Fallon that, “I play a guy named Beckett, who’s kind of a criminal and a mentor to Han. That’s all I can say.” Given that we already expected Harrelson to play Han’s mentor, that part wasn’t a surprise. But Beckett isn’t a very Star Wars name, is it? And that would seem to indicate that he won’t be Garris Shrike in the new film.
Why was Shrike left out of the new continuity? It’s entirely possible that the new Disney overlords may have had a problem with Shrike’s more abusive side, as shown in The Paradise Snare. But it’s also likely that Lucasfilm wanted a clean break from the old continuity, and the freedom to redefine Han’s history for the new film. That said, there is also the possibility that Beckett is a composite character who may combine aspects from more than one of Han’s previous mentors. Remember, Kylo Ren wasn’t too far away from Jacen Solo, Han’s son from the novels. So there is a precedent for that.
What do you think about Harrelson’s new character? Be sure to shoot first and leave a comment below!