It has already been five years since Solo: A Star Wars Story released in theaters. To say that it did not turn out to be the success Disney was expecting would be quite the understatement (though honestly it’d probably be seen as an alright performance if they didn’t reshoot 3/4th of the movie, doubling the budget).
That’s but one of the reasons on why we’ll probably never get a proper continuation of what Solo: A Star Wars Story might have been leading to. The troubled production of the spin-off led to a change in directors. The duo Phil Lord and Chrisopher Miller (whom you might know as the producers behind some stellar movies like Spider-Verse and The Mitchells vs the Machines) were replaced by film-making veteran Ron Howard following a number of creative differences between Lucasfilm and the two directors.
Should’ve told ’em the odds
Despite its less than stellar production process a lot of people, myself included, really liked Solo! It was a really fun heist/adventure-movie exploring the origin of an iconic character. Alden Ehrenreich gave an amazing performance as Han Solo, perfectly capturing his traits that we love so much from the movies in the Skywalker Saga, while adding a level of sincerity that we see being deteriorated in a believable manner throughout the film.
The question at the time, and honestly that a few people still ask to this day, was if this was really a story that was worth telling. In my opinion Solo definitely earned its right of existence. Sure, it’s not perfect, but again: it’s just so much fun! Unfortunately that wasn’t enough for a lot of people. Seemingly just not a ton of people were all too interested in seeing this Han Solo-focused movie. The film ended up earning not even 400 million dollars at the box office, against a total budget of 275 million bones. It did make a small profit, but it was absolutely not the hit Lucasfilm and Disney were probably hoping for.
Along with that, Solo got quite unlucky with the timing of its release. It was the first movie since the release of the highly divisive The Last Jedi, which came out about four months prior. While I of course would be seated for a Star Wars movie on day one, no matter how close to each other they release, it’s understandable that not everyone feels the same. Along with that Avengers: Infinity War released from Marvel’s stables just a few weeks before Solo. Two blockbusters from the biggest franchises on the planet, but Infinity War had its finality and build-up going for it, which Solo lacked.
Han’s last flight?
Fan’s have been campaigning for a follow-up to Solo’s story ever since its initial release. With the way the movie ended, it definitely seemed like Lucasfilm was planning to go places with the film’s two leads, Han and Qi’ra (Emilia Clarke). Maybe they’d go their separate ways for a while, with Qi’ra dealing with Crimson Dawn and Maul, while we’d see more of Han during his time smuggling for gangsters like Jabba. There was a lot of storytelling potential, and fans are still eager to see it.
Sadly though, I don’t really see this follow-up story happening. Especially not in a big-budget movie. The biggest reason for me to believe this has to do with a recent push in Qi’ra’s appearances across Star Wars’ Expended Universe. The last few years of the main-line Star Wars comicbook run heavily featured Qi’ra in the War of the Bounty Hunters, Crimson Reign and Hidden Empire arcs. The events of this take place in the year between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi; years after the events of Solo and Maul meeting his demise in Star Wars: Rebels. Along with that there is a book coming out detailing what happened to Qi’ra after she and Han got separated at the beginning of Solo: A Star Wars Story. In Crimson Climb we’ll see her climb through the ranks of the criminal organization.
Along with that we’ve been getting a new comicbook run for Han Solo and Chewbacca as well, which tells us more of their endeavors before we meet the scoundrel and Wookiee in A New Hope. The push of stories for these characters in other mediums makes me believe that we won’t be seeing them again on the big screen, or even a Disney+ series. And if you ask me, that’s a big shame.
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