One of the most beloved characters in the Star Wars franchise is Chewbacca, who to date has appeared in five of the eight live-action films. Audiences have spent a lot of time with the lovable Wookiee, but the movies only cover a brief portion of his life. There's much more to learn about Han Solo's best friend, which is why Chewie has been featured frequently in some the other canon materials, such as the comics and novels. One of the more prominent instances was last year's book Life Debt, which provided some of the official backstory between Han and Chewie. The life debt, it seems, was two-fold, and Solo felt it was his responsibility to help his trusted pal take back his home on Kashyyyk.
It's been hinted at before in the Disney canon that Chewbacca has some blood relatives who live on the planet. Han mentions Chewie's family in a passage from Life Debt, and in Bloodline, the Wookiee is far away from the comings and goings of the New Republic, settling into a domesticated life after years of being at war. The recently-published novel Aftermath: Empire's End (which reveals what happened to the infamous Jar Jar Binks) confirms that Chewbacca has living family on his native world, and he's actually a father.
The Aftermath trilogy by Chuck Wendig is noteworthy for including multiple interludes that provide snapshots of what's happening around the galaxy, separate from the main plot. In Empire's End, one of these sections is set on Kashyyyk, detailing the exploits of a Wookiee named Lumpawaroo. "Waroo," as he's called, is looking to eliminate any leftover traces of the Empire, freeing some youngsters from a child labor camp. This particular instance sees him encounter Imperial officer Dessard, who takes great pleasure in tormenting the Wookiees. Before Dessard can deliver a killing strike to Waroo, he is rescued by a group led by his father, Chewbacca. After disposing of Dessard, Chewie and Waroo have an emotional reunion and "sing a song of family."
Longtime Star Wars fans know that this isn't the first time Chewbacca has had a family. The maligned Star Wars Holiday Special was all about Chewie coming home for Life Day, having a celebration with his relatives. This, of course, included Chewie's son, Lumpy. It would appear Waroo's full name - Lumpawaroo - is designed to be an homage to the Holiday Special, since he very easily could be referred to as "Lumpy." The story group clearly leaves no stone unturned when looking for inspiration and will draw from anything if they see fit. Fortunately, this time around, the father/son reconnection is more emotionally resonant.
Wendig does not mention how old Waroo is in the interlude, but it's worth pointing out that Wookiees can have a lifespan of several centuries. Chewie was born 200 years before the Battle of Yavin and could have had a child at any point before the rise of the Empire. It will be interesting to see if Chewbacca's family history is covered elsewhere, either in another novel or the young Han Solo spinoff film. Through the Aftermath series, Lucasfilm seems to be planting seeds that directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller will explore in their anthology, uncovering much of the dynamic duo's pasts. Even if it was just for a cameo, it wouldn't be surprising to see some more Wookiees. At the very least, they'll probably be mentioned.
Source: Aftermath: Empire's End
- Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017
- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018