Billy Dee Williams offers high praise for both Solo: A Star Wars Story and Donald Glover's performance as Lando Calrissian. Williams, of course, first brought life to the fan-favorite scoundrel in The Empire Strikes Back and reprised the role in Return of the Jedi. The character hasn't been seen on the big screen since 1983, which was one of the many reasons why viewers were excited when it was revealed Lando would be a part of prequel spinoff Solo. To top it all off, Glover's casting was seen in many circles as perfect and was subject to much enthusiasm.
The first wave of (generally positive) reviews for Solo made their way online last week, with Glover's turn frequently cited as one of the highlights. Given the actor's tremendous talent, it isn't surprising that Glover's Lando is well-received. Fortunately, we can count Williams among those who liked what they saw.
"He texted me. He said 'You did a good job.' That was all I wanted, all I needed. It definitely made me feel like I didn't let him down. He was such an iconic figure in the first one, in The Empire Strikes Back, that I definitely didn't want to let him down."
Glover met with Williams prior to filming Solo, where he was simply told to be charming. Based on the responses, the youngster definitely heeded that advice, and it has to mean the world to him Williams is fond of his interpretation. Glover hasn't been shy about discussing his deep personal connection to Star Wars and the Lando character, which just so happened to be the only role he truly coveted. Of course, Williams isn't going to say anything negative about Solo at this point in time, but it's still nice to see the veteran actor go out of his way to glow about his successor. If anything, this'll just increase the demand to see Lando when Solo opens this week.
With Calrissian poised to be one of Solo's breakout characters, it'll be interesting to see if Lucasfilm has any future plans for him. Confusion surrounding plans for a Lando spinoff has been cleared up, meaning it's more likely the gambler shows up in a Solo sequel. How well Ron Howard's film performs with fans and at the box office will determine the future of the Solo sub-franchise, though things are trending in the right direction on that front. Opening weekend estimates suggest the film will break a Memorial Day record, so the studio could very well opt to revisit this corner of the galaxy at some point.
- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: Episode IX (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019