A newly released excerpt from the upcoming Star Wars canon novel Last Shot may hint at the reasoning behind Lando Calrissian's absence in the sequel trilogy. Introduced in The Empire Strikes Back, the smooth-talking Cloud City administrator went on to become a fan-favorite and was a key component of the Rebel Alliance's victory during the Battle of Endor. Given his connection to the main heroes (particularly Han Solo), the lack of Lando in the new films has been a bit odd. Both The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi didn't even mention the character, and any appearance from him in Episode IX seems to be a long shot.
Donald Glover will portray a younger version of Lando in this summer's Solo: A Star Wars Story, but many fans are still wondering what he's up to in the sequel trilogy era. This seems like a question best-served for the non-movie canon materials to answer, and a new book possibly reveals what happened between the two old buddies.
Released on the official Star Wars website, the excerpt finds Han struggling at parenting a baby Ben Solo while contemplating his new position as leader of the New Republic Pilots Commission. As Han starts to doze off with his infant son, he's rudely awakened by an urgent knocking at his door. He finds an incredibly angry (and typically dapper) Lando standing there and is greeted by a punch in the face for reasons unknown. The excerpt ends with Han thinking to himself, "I probably should have seen that coming."
The dynamic between Han and Lando has always been a bit complicated, but it's still surprising to see the suave Calrissian exhibit such behavior. It certainly seems as if something fractured their relationship, but what remains to be seen. Part of Last Shot (as reported by EW) deals with Lando getting "mixed up in something else Han did that was Han's fault" when a crime lord mixes up the two Millennium Falcon owners, forcing Han and Lando to right a previous wrong. This could be Lando's way of telling Han about his predicament, and he's (understandably) upset about being blamed for something he didn't do. Depending on what that was, a bridge could have been permanently burned. However, the canon novel Bloodline briefly implies Lando remains friendly with Leia, so perhaps the Last Shot incident isn't too severe.
While it would be nice to have some idea of what Lando's up to in the sequel trilogy era, it arguably isn't the most pressing priority for Lucasfilm at this point in time. Besides, some of it can probably be chalked up to logistics. With the new films focusing primarily on younger characters like Rey, Finn, Poe, and Kylo Ren (while bringing back Luke, Han, and Leia), there frankly isn't room to include Lando in the mix as well without it feeling shoehorned. The filmmakers have looked for a way to incorporate Calrissian, but haven't found the right spot for him. Fortunately, Star Wars has a presence in other mediums to give fans more Lando.
- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019