Jabba the Hutt
Throughout the original trilogy, Han was haunted by his connection to the slimy gangster. The two characters are tied together so closely, there's been a never-ending stream of rumors purporting Jabba will show up in Solo. Set photos and merchandise seem to provide some evidence lending credence to these claims, though nothing official has come out yet. On the surface, incorporating the slug into the spinoff sounds reasonable, but it's another case of something that's not truly needed for the story Solo is trying to tell.
Star Wars canon has actually already covered the backstory behind Han's debt with Jabba. The novel From a Certain Point of View goes into great detail about the specifics that happened, leading us to believe Lucasfilm never intended to dedicate screen time to it. One of the fears of Solo when it was first announced is that it'd just become Original Trilogy Reference: The Movie, and one way to subvert that would be to show us a Han and Chewie misadventure we have no prior knowledge of. Plus, if Solo is about Han becoming the smuggler he is in the saga films, he doesn't have to cross paths with Jabba too. He still has many years to form that business relationship.
The incompetent Rodian and Han will forever be intertwined due to their famous cantina scene (and the various alterations), but we don't need to see the beginnings of their dynamic. Greedo, of course, was one of the bounty hunters who tracked Solo down for Jabba (before meeting his unfortunate end), and we've already established the prequel won't have time to feature that part of Han's shady past. Unless Greedo is part of the crew Beckett assembles for the Conveyex heist (and he's not; that likely would have been revealed by now), there's no place for him in this story.
Related: Han Solo Stole Greedo's Girlfriend
Much like Jabba, this is another area of Han's life that was fleshed out in From a Certain Point of View, where it's revealed Han more or less stole Greedo's girlfriend, which caused the Rodian to hold a personal grudge. That sounds like a fun tale, but it might be better served for a comic series or a separate novel. It's not something the films need to worry about. Again, the movies are trying to help the Star Wars universe grow, so retreading too much of the past is limiting from a creative perspective.
It's a little controversial to say Solo doesn't need Boba Fett, but a close analysis of the situation shows that's the case. For starters, the fan-favorite Mandalorian probably would have been confirmed at this point if he was in the film. Lucasfilm knows he's a marketable character, and they'd want to generate excitement about his involvement. As it stands, Solo sports a cool-looking helmeted adversary of its own in the form of Enfys Nest. Since there wasn't a place for Boba in the main story, it would just be frustrating fan service if he was thrown into a scene as a gratuitous cameo. Fett's lack of screen time is infamous, so if he is to reappear somewhere, it'd be better if it was for a meaty role.
It'll be interesting to see what Boba's future is. At one point, the bounty hunter was set to be the subject of his own, Josh Trank-directed spinoff movie, but that project was canned before it gained much traction. New Han Alden Ehrenreich is rumored to be locked into a three-picture contract, so if there are Solo sequels, perhaps Boba could factor in there. But with Lucasfilm already forging ahead on Rian Johnson's new trilogy and David Benioff & D.B. Weiss' film series, Boba Fett could be on the back-burner and never revived.
Maz is another saga character who's been rumored for Solo, and at first blush that makes sense. Introduced in The Force Awakens, the ancient alien is an ally Han and Chewie trust in times of need. Episode VII made allusions to their history, and one way to interpret that is laying seeds for future installments. Solo had already been announced before Force Awakens hit theaters, and fans were quick to put two and two together and speculate. However, Solo doesn't need a Maz cameo in order to be successful.
The sequel trilogy has already shown the limitations of the character, as both J.J. Abrams and Rian Johnson were at a loss of what to do with her. Johnson even admitted on his Last Jedi commentary he originally gave Maz more to do before realizing her beats could be handled by others. There's no real reason to tack her on to Solo, as it would probably be another "plot catalyst" scene where Maz points the main heroes in the direction of the next story thread. Plus, given Lupita Nyong'o's stature, it would be difficult to keep her role under wraps for this long. Like others on our list, she likely would have been revealed if she was in Solo.
Fortunately, Solo is co-written by Lawrence Kasdan, a Lucasfilm legend who penned The Empire Strikes Back, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Return of the Jedi, and The Force Awakens. He's a smart scribe who knows how to pen an entertaining blockbuster, and what little we know about his latest makes it sound like he has some surprises in store. Obviously, there are going to be some inevitable original trilogy connections, but it seems like the film will primarily tell a new narrative to get invested in without using nostalgia as a crutch. Hopefully that's the case, and whatever Easter eggs are in Solo are natural fits.
- 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