Shortlist revealed in Disney's search for new young Han Solo

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There were stories going around sometime last week (I need to pay more attention to the news) of a Mrs South Africa being chosen as the Mrs World for 2016 in one of these rather pointless beauty contests. So I guess we should be happy or something, but who cares about beauty contests anyway? Seriously, it’s others men’s wives – why are we even judging… But, if there is a contest worth being interested in, it would be finding out who is going to be the new young version of Han Solo in the upcoming Disney Han Solo… solo movie (sorry, I couldn’t resist). And not only are the debates of who would make a better Han Solo more interesting, but also the prize itself will probably do a lot more for the winner’s future career – if Harrison Ford’s career is anything to go by – than any beauty pageant can offer.

Personally, I’m disappointed that the make-up and SFX team wasn’t up to just making Harrison Ford look a lot younger and keeping him in the role if the titular character – but I guess they want to build for some potential future movies and want to appeal to a new generation of Star Wars fans rather than meet the expectations of fans around the world. Seriously, what’s wrong with being 73 years old these days?

However, my personal disappointments aside, it seems that the Han Solo contest is finally starting to reach its conclusion and Lucas Film and Disney have apparently narrowed their options down to 3 young talents – who probably all have a bright future if there current bodies of work are anything to go by. According to The Hollywood Report the judging has come down to the final 3 names –  Alden Ehrenreich, who did some great scene-stealing work in Hail, Caesar!, Jack Reynor, best known for his work in Transformers: Age of Extinction; and Taron Egerton, the star of The Kingsman and Eddie the Eagle.

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Personally, if it’s between these 3, then I have mixed feelings. Taron Egerton is probably the best of the bunch in terms of pure talent, but I’m not sure he has the right personality to be a Han Solo and Jack Reynor might be someone who can fit that persona better. However, it is a tough choice and it seems that Disney is not rushing the process either.

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Now Disney has not confirmed anything as of yet and these are just rumours for now. It’s believed as many as 10 actors have tried out for the role after even more were shortlisted, which was reportedly as large as 2 500 candidates – meaning more people want to be Han Solo than president of the United States and quite frankly who wouldn’t want to be Hans Solo (and boy am I grateful Donald Trump was not considered for this role).

It is also believed they all performed screen tests and met with the directors (Phil Lord and Christopher Miller) to see if they woul  be a good fit. If rumours are to be believed some of those others who tried out for the role include Miles Teller, the Whiplash star who appears in the Divergent movies; Ansel Elgort, the Fault in Our Stars star who also is in the Divergent movies and Emory Cohen, who played Saoirse Ronan’s love interest in the Oscar-nominated Brooklyn, also tested. Actors from Richard Linklater’s new movie Everybody Wants Some also had meetings, according to the sources.

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Whomever they decide, the character will debut in a Star Wars spinoff movie being made by Disney, Lucasfilm and director Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (21 Jump StreetThe Lego Movie) and scheduled for 2018.

Ford’s swaggering Solo is considered a standout character of the seven-film Star Wars series and will be a tough act to follow. I wonder if they are going to cast anyone new to play Chewbacca?

Last Updated: March 17, 2016

Craig Risi

A man of many talents, but no sense how to use them. I could be discovering the cure for aids or finding ways to achieve world peace, but I'd rather be watching movies and writing here instead.

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