***Think what you will about George Lucas, but in terms of Star Wars, it can all be traced back to him. That’s why I always find it so interesting to listen to him talk about it. His creative process, the reason certain decisions were made, and how these movies became the pop cultural staples they are. This space is dedicated to just that. This is “George Lucas on Star Wars.”***
By Rob Siebert
The Scene: Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi meet Han Solo, a smuggler they hope will take them to Alderaan.
George Lucas Says (via the A New Hope commentary track): “Han Solo is the foil to the idealistic Luke. He’s the cynical mercenary and Luke is the idealist, the dreamer, the one who is trying to do things to make it a better world. Han Solo is somebody who’s been beaten down by the world and really only cares about himself. Luke symbolizes the compassionate hero. … And obviously in the course of the movie, Han Solo’s character arc is that he goes from being a self-centered, selfish, cynical character to a caring, compassionate, try-to-make-this-a-better-place type character. It’s a fun part. It’s a fun character. Good stories usually involve two people who are the opposite of each other, and that’s a principle aspect of the story is how those characters beat up against each other.”
I Say: Is Han Solo the best cynical foil in movie history? If not, he’s got to be in the top two or three. He’s definitely the most iconic. And it is a fun part. So much fun, in fact, that the series almost feels like it’s missing a key ingredient without the character.
Email Rob at firstname.lastname@example.org, or check us out on Twitter.