March 8, 2016
Han Solo Is Not Going Away Anytime Soon

While many fans are still smarting on Han Solo's fate in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which was released in theaters only two months ago, those same fans are impatient to see what happens in the next chapter of Star Wars.

While Disney can't speed up the movie-making process to accommodate them, Disney CEO, Bob Iger found that he can tease fans with other news in the franchise's universe.

Today, while attending the Deutsche Bank 2016 Media, Internet & Telecom Conference in Palm Beach Florida, Iger shared information about both Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and about the first standalone film that will feature a familiar friend.

"Rogue One … is about a band of rebels plotting to steal the plans to the Death Star. It takes place right before George Lucas's first film, which came out in 1977 and is now called The New Hope," said Iger as reported by The Wrap. "We have others in the works, including one, which is an origin story about Han Solo and Chewy. And that'll come after Star Wars 8 in 2018. And then there will possibly more thereafter."

That's right, Star Wars' own "When Hairy (Chewbacca) Met Solo" storyline will share how Han Solo met "the walking carpet" for the first time. It may seem obvious to some that Chewbacca would appear in the film, but news confirming this had not been shared before today.

According to Lucasfilm president, Kathleen Kennedy, the unnamed Han Solo movie will feature a younger version of the character and will be directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller. No word yet on who will be playing the title role, but there is a short list of names being tossed around that include Miles Teller, Ansel Elgort, Dave Franco, Jack Reynor, Scott Eastwood, Logan Lerman, Emory Cohen, and Blake Jenner.

This news comes on the heels of Marvel Comics' recent announcement that the company has begun work on a new Star Wars five-part comic book series that will also feature Han Solo and chronicle events that happened between the films Star Wars: A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back. The series will be written by Marjorie Liu and illustrated by Mark Brooks. The first issue of Star Wars: Han Solo #1 is expected to hit stands later this June.

Meanwhile, as fans wait for the actual Han Solo movie, they can look forward to seeing Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, which will arrive in theaters on December 18 of this year. This story is said to take place somewhere between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. Directed by Gareth Edwards and written by Gary Whihtta and Chris Weitz, Rogue One shares the adventures of a group of resistance fighters who attempt to steal plans for the Death Star, a plot that is referenced in the original 1977 movie. It stars Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, Donnie Yen, Jiang Wen, Forest Whitaker, Mads Mikkelsen, Alan Tudyk, and Riz Ahmed.

But wait, it gets better. Han Solo fans who prefer the Harrison Ford version will be pleased to learn that The Hollywood Reporter announced today that a full-length documentary about the making of Star Wars: The Force Awakens will be released on a Digital HD/Blu-ray combo pack next month. The world premiere of Secrets of The Force Awakens: A Cinematic Journey, will be shown at the SXSW Film Festival on March 14, 2016 that will feature a question and answer session with Roger Guyett (VFX supervisor), Matthew Wood (sound editor), and Michelle Rejwan (co-producer). The combo pack will be on store shelves on April 5.

[Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images]