Ever since director Ron Howard tweeted “Hang in there :-). Now that ep 8 is out there it won’t be long” at the top of the year, fans have been clamoring for the first look at Solo: A Star Wars Story. Many fans have speculated that the lack of a trailer, marketing, or even an official photo was a sign that Solo was in trouble, and considering that the original directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller were replaced by Hollywood vet and Academy Award-winner Ron Howard quite late into production, it wasn’t exactly a stretch to believe this. However, the teaser Disney debuted during the Super Bowl got a resoundingly positive response, and the next morning’s full trailer appears to have squelched most fans’ fears.
The trailer is nearly twice as long as the Super Bowl spot, and starts with the same sequence that shows Han in the cockpit of the Millennium Falcon, firing up its engines. “I’ve been running scams on the street since I was ten,” he says, and we see him in a landspeeder with Emila Clarke’s character Qi’ra being chased by a Stormtrooper on a speeder bike and another vehicle. Han’s hot rod-esque speeder is the same one Howard teased in several shots on his Instagram page during filming.
We already know from leaked images of the Landspeeder LEGO set that this takes place on Han’s home planet, Corellia, and now we get some backstory. “I was kicked out of the flight academy for having a mind of my own,” Han complains before the footage cuts to a later part of the chase where they are being chased by an unidentified vehicle. We do, however, know the character driving it is named Moloch, which we learned from another leaked LEGO set, “Moloch’s Landspeeder.”
Next we see Han on a snow planet wearing a fur coat as the narration continues. “I’m going to be a pilot… best in the galaxy.” We know from the Super Bowl spot that Han is saying this to an Imperial recruitment officer in the film. This is followed by the interior and exterior shots of the Falcon that were also in last night’s teaser. From the haze surrounding the Falcon, we’re guessing this is somewhere in the mines of Kessel.
We then cut to a desert planet where we catch Han with Woody Harrelson’s character Tobias Beckett walking through the sands and then talking among what appears to be ancient ruins. We know from yet another LEGO set, “Imperial TIE Fighter,” that Beckett was Han’s commanding officer when he was in the Empire, and that they were both part of a mission on Mimban, a planet that has only appeared in an early episode of Star Wars: The Clone Wars thus far.
Beckett tells Han he’s “putting together a crew,” and then we see Qi’ra and her droid, which we assume is Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s character, followed by Donald Glover’s Lando Calrissian. We also meet two characters we haven’t seen yet — Thandie Newton’s character, and a new, four-armed alien. Early speculation points to Newton being Han’s wife Sana Starros, who was introduced in Marvel’s Star Wars comic series in 2015. The scene shows the new alien whipping a cover off the heavy blasters, further confirming that Falcon is brand spanking new in this film. When Beckett asks Han, “are you in?,” Chewie growls, and Han translates it as a “yes.”
At this point, we get a shot of Lando and Phoebe’s droid piloting the Falcon and entering hyperspace, which shifts to a shot of a opulent nightclub where we see a humanoid woman and a diminutive encapsulated alien performing a duet. We know from behind-the-scenes photos that this venue belongs to Paul Bethany’s character, who is rumored to be a unscrupulous collector of rare items and creatures.
As we see Qi’Ra in the club, the footage is overdubbed with her saying, “I may be the only person who knows what you really are.” We get a quick glimpses of a gang surrounding Han on the desert planet we saw earlier, being led by the villain we saw fighting on the maglev train in the Super Bowl spot. There is a good possibility that this posse is the Pyke Syndicate, a cartel that runs spice distribution in the Star Wars galaxy.
In this scene Han unclips his holster that is clearly holding his trademark DL-44 blaster pistol. This seems to be an ode to perhaps the greatest debate in Star Wars fandom: whether Han truly shot first. The villain appears to wielding some variation of vibro-ax, a weapon used by Jabba the Hutt’s guards in Return of the Jedi.
The next shot sees an unfamiliar figure clad all in black, taking out two Kessel mine guards. We know they are Kessel guards because of a leaked photo of a Hasbro action figure. After a glimpse of Phoebe’s droid detonating a control room, we see a new spaceship evading four smaller vessels that appear to be taking its cargo. This takes place on the snow planet we see near the beginning of the trailer. Then we see the same ship leaving the planet’s atmosphere as a huge explosion ignites below.
The trailer ends with the Solo: A Star Wars Story title card and then a scene that sees Han and Chewie piloting the Falcon with Lando and Qi’ra also in the cockpit. Han assures everyone, “I thought we were in trouble there for a second but it’s fine,” right before they almost collide with a huge, sinuous structure that seems to be organic. While it’s hard to determine if the obstruction is a living creature or solid mineral, it could very well be part of the fabled Kessel Run.
Directed by Ron Howard from a script by Lawrence and Jon Kasdan, Solo: A Star Wars Story stars Alden Ehrenreich as Han Solo, Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian, Joonas Suotamo as Chewbacca, Emilia Clarke as Qi’ra, Woody Harrelson as Tobias Beckett, Thandie Newton, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, and Paul Bettany. The film arrives in theaters May 25.