They may be an odd couple, but the partnership of Han Solo and Chewbacca has made its indelible mark in cinema, inspiring generations and influencing our ideas on friendship, loyalty and courage.
With the release of Lucasfilm’s “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” audiences are once again able to revisit this iconic male duo and revel at the infectious dynamic between a Wookie and scruffy-looking scoundrel.
The film traces not only the origins of Han Solo but also reveals how he meets his would-be loyal co-pilot for the first time, bound by a desperate mission against impossible odds that will help shape the irresistible antihero audiences have come to love.
And what can audiences expect from Han’s journey? Producer Kathleen Kennedy is happy to answer: “They can expect to have fun, laugh a lot and fall in love with Han and Chewie all over again, or for the first time.”
For the past 30 years, Harrison Ford and Peter Mayhew have played and defined Han Solo and Chewbacca for fans. In “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” the batons are passed to fast-rising star Alden Ehrenreich and Joonas Suotamo, a former college basketball player.
Says Suotamo, “Chewbacca is truly the most loyal companion. He’s very attentive, always alert to danger because he’s lived such a long, dangerous life, always on the watch. He is the perfect partner to have watching out for you. It becomes clear to Chewbacca that Han needs someone to take care of him.”
The actor adds, “Han’s too much of a risk-taker, overconfident that he can accomplish any task. Chewbacca is there to tell him that maybe he needs to think first. It brings enormous fun into the scenes.”
Says Alden Ehrenreich of their special relationship, “It’s like watching a married couple. There’s an unspoken closeness. They are always bickering, but at the end of the day there’s a deep and unbreakable bond. Chewbacca is very emotional, very loyal, and cares a great deal about Han.”
About his co-star Joonas Suotamo, Ehrenreich comments, “One of the things audiences respond to with Chewbacca is his big open heart, and, while he has to be mindful of all the technical requirements involved in moving in the suit, Joonas was really able to bring so much to the performance, so much heart in what he does, and that’s really impressive.”
"Solo: A Star Wars Story” is now playing in Philippine cinemas. Join the conversation online by using the hashtags #HanSolo and #StarWarsPH.