Disney and Lucasfilm performed a successful experiment with Rogue One, a Star Wars “anthology film” set between the main “Episodes” in the saga. This bodes well for their next entry in this spin-off series, Han Solo, which will explore the titular character’s origin.
Created by Phil Lord and Chris Miller, the film will star Alden Ehrenreich as the young man who will one day meet the Skywalker twins and help save the galaxy. A few other actors have also signed on, including Woody Harrelson, who says that he will be playing a mentor figure for Solo.
Though nothing is known for sure, some fans suspect that Harrelson’s character will be Garris Shrike, a figure from Star Wars’ “Legends” line of books, comics and other stories. According to this backstory, Shrike was a criminal who raised Solo and other orphans to help him with his escapades, but also proved abusive at times. Solo eventually rebelled and escaped, with the aid of best friend Chewbacca, who is confirmed to appear in the film.
The “Legends” line is no longer canon since Disney took over the series. However, many other characters and events from these stories have been reintroduced into the official mythology, making it entirely possible that Harrelson will bring Garris Shrike to the big screen. If so, he may also be the antagonist, a twist on the franchise’s previous “apprentice turns evil” theme.
Harrelson says that the film will begin production in March.