Nine Actors Who Almost Played Han Solo in Star Wars

I once went to the world premiere for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

There. I got that out of the way. Phew. If I go six minutes without mentioning it, I’m scared my mind will just implode.

As I watched it, I wondered how my life could have been different had I have auditioned for the role of Finn. (I mean, sure, I’d have also needed talent, charisma, charm, personality and all of the rest, but it would have been close, right? Right?)

And then that got me thinking more… I’m hungry. I wonder if they’ll give me a second box of popcorn.

And then I got thinking even more… What if Harrison Ford had never got the role of Han Solo in the Star Wars franchise?

If – in the hugely unlikely event – that you too had a similar thought, you’ve come to the right place, as these following actors also nearly got the role…

Al Pacino

Trying to explain the Star Wars saga to my mother is like trying to explain, well, anything quite simple to my mother. It’s difficult.

Usually, I’d have rolled my eyes and let out an exasperated sigh, but she’s not the only one. Star of The Godfather, Al Pacino, has previously stated that he turned down the role of Han Solo because he didn’t have a clue what was going on in Star Wars.

Burt Reynolds

There are many things I regret – I’ve made seven decisions I regret this hour alone. (Hopefully) none of these decisions will come back to haunt me decades later…

Unlike Burt Reynolds’, who said he regretted turning down the role of Han Solo. He was offered the role in the same year he starred in Smokey and the Bandit, saying that it was too similar to roles he’d previously played.

Christopher Walken

According to Chris Taylor’s popular book, ‘How Star Wars Conquered The Universe’, Christopher Walken was George Lucas’ second choice for the role of Han Solo, following Harrison Ford.

Just imagine how long it would have taken Christopher to simply utter the line “I know”. The dramatic pauses would be through the roof…

Glynn Turman

Star of Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Glynn Turman, once auditioned for the role of Han Solo, but according to reports, George wasn’t sure how audiences would react to an interracial romance between Han and Princess Leia.

At least that racism is well and truly over now, right? RIGHT?!

Kurt Russell

Kurt Russell has starred in his fair share of science-fiction movies – from Soldier to Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2, and even the exceptional, Oscar-snubbed Sky High.

Yet, it nearly all started with his portrayal of Han Solo, after he auditioned for the role (which can still be seen online.) And, on a totally unrelated note, once you’ve seen that audition, PLEASE Google ‘Chris Klein Mamma Mia Audition’. I beg.

Nick Nolte

Nick Nolte nearly got his big break as Han Solo, but has since gone on to say that he’s relieved he didn’t get the role, as he’d have made Han too “goofy”. (Which, as a Disney property, would have probably been great for him.)

Nick went on to finally appear in a Star Wars piece; The Mandalorian, as Kuiil – someone who is, in every shape and form, far more superior than stinky, stinky Han.

Robert Englund

Before his stint as Freddy Krueger, Robert Englund, nearly landed the role of Han Solo. Just when you thought he couldn’t have been more instrumental in the history of Star WarsTHINK AGAIN.

It was actually Robert who went on to urge his pal, Mark Hamill, into auditioning for the role of Luke Skywalker. And now, Robert, if you could just hook me up with a job that’ll see me go down in cinematic history, that would be great.

Sylvester Stallone

Just before Rocky had been released in cinemas, George Lucas was apparently eyeing up Sylvester Stallone to play Han Solo. I mean, it would save on the blaster budget, when Han could just punch all of the aliens into a coma, wouldn’t it?

Much like many of the other actors on this list, Sylvester has stated that he believes he would have been a bad fit for the role.

Tom Selleck

According to Robert Englund, Tom Selleck was also one of the many contenders in line for the role of Han Solo.

Tom’s never confirmed this, but why should he? It’s not as if he also lost the role of Indiana Jones to Harrison Ford, is it? Oh. He did? Well… This is awkward.

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