George Lucas Solved A Star Wars Problem By Freezing Han Solo (And Harrison Ford)

According to Robert Sellers’ “Harrison Ford: A Biography,” Harrison Ford was nonplussed by the perturbed reaction to the second film’s unresolved nature. As he cheekily told Starlog in 1981:

“I guess it really depends on what you want to go to a movie for. I figure that there was at least 11 dollars worth of entertainment in ‘Empire.’ So, if you paid four bucks and didn’t get an ending, you’re still seven dollars ahead of the game.”

Or course, Ford owed his career in part to George Lucas (who had cast him as the hell-raising street racer Bob Falfa in “American Graffiti”), and would never abandon his friend. But this didn’t mean his co-stars had to play fair-and-square with journalists desperate to reveal plot details for “Star Wars: Episode VI — Return of the Jedi.” Per Sellers, Mark Hamill relished the opportunity to yank reporters’ chains. As the star teased in an interview during the “Empire” press tour:

“Look at what’s happening to Harrison. He wasn’t at all sure whether he wanted to repeat his role and he’s not at all committed to doing it a third time. So George has left him in limbo and given himself the option. Solo is not vital to future stories. It’s up to Harrison, I guess, as to whether Han comes back into the saga.”

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