Warning: This post contains SPOILERS for Solo: A Star Wars Story
Ron Howard explains why Jabba the Hutt wasn't included in Solo: A Star Wars Story. In the lead up to Solo, there were plenty of theories over what other familiar elements to Star Wars fans would be included. The film obviously features a known character in the lead, this time played by Alden Ehrenreich, as well as a younger Chewbacca and Lando (Donald Glover). When it came to Solo's biggest fan-service moment and cameo, it went in an unexpected way following plenty of set up for the appearance of one giant slimy mob boss.
In the closing moments of Solo, Qi'ra helped bring Darth Maul back to the big screen. Using him as the leader of Crimson Dawn was the film's biggest secret, so much so that the Kasdans didn't even include who this character was going to be in the script. There were a few paths the film could've ultimately went down, and now director Ron Howard is saying why it wasn't Jabba.
Empire spoke at length with Ron Howard about Solo: A Star Wars Story to discuss all the biggest moments and the decisions that went in to each. This led to a discussion about Maul's appearance (one Howard lobbied for) and what other directions the film could've taken. Howard confirmed that Jabba was in consideration, but explained why they went in another direction.
Jabba was on the list, but they kind of knew they didn't want to go that way because it would be sort of funny, and maybe a little bit too much like sequel-baiting.
Using Maul was certainly the more shocking way to go, but also a bit more confusing to the average fan. Hardcore fans of Star Wars canon know that Maul survived his apparent death in The Phantom Menace and has had adventures in The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels. However, those who aren't up to date with animated shows or other supplemental materials have found Maul's appearance confusing and raised questions over the film's timeline. Jabba would've likely been a less confusing choice.
Howard's explanation for not going with Jabba though doesn't make complete sense. The placement and execution of Maul's appearance feels very much like sequel bait, and if Solo somehow gets a sequel his place in the underground world would surely be explored. Jabba is no different. In fact, with Solo's box office receipts making a sequel look very unlikely, the reemergence of Maul to casual audiences leaves a door open that was previously thought to be closed. Since it wasn't in Solo, another appearance from Jabba may have to wait until Obi-Wan or Boba Fett - or even with his own movie.
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019