Thursday, February 21, 2013

Star Wars Spin-Offs I Could Live With

One of the ideas being kicked around for the reinvigorated Star Wars film franchise from Disney has been the idea of spin-off movies featuring big-name characters, the original rumor naming Yoda as a left-field frontrunner, but when that had to be a prequel for obvious reasons (is "death" a spoiler if the movie came out in 1983 and a solid 20%1 of the living human population has seen Return of the Jedi?) immediately other prequel ideas came out of the wood works.

Boba Fett was a chief contender, although I'll admit he had a way cooler backstory before Lucas got involved with it. Other possibilities would be young Luke/Leia/Han/Lando/etc. kind of films. Now, these would most likely come with all the same problems as making Boba Fett a small, whiny Kiwi kid, but they'd certainly have more recognition than a Knights of the Old Republic film or TV series employing original or lesser-known characters.

Only two of those have solid adventures and source material, though.

Yes, I am advocating for a Young Han Solo/Young Lando Calrissian film series.

Lando has a trilogy of short novels taking place just a few years prior to A New Hope, followed by a trilogy of Solo. Hand eve has two novels set even earlier. The time gap is enough to recast the rolls with decent-looking, competent actors and make it work within regular continuity. Through in a svelter, leaner Chewbacca and you're all set. Han Solo and the Paradise Snare. Lando Calrissian and the Mindharp of the Sharu. Hell, the trilogies were written as trilogies, with full story arches and self-contained villains and friends. Best of all, they could coincide as a couple Han movies introduce Lando, then Lando's wrap up with the beginnings of the Sabacc tournament on Cloud City where Lando loses the Falcon to Han.

Come on, Disney, give me a paycheck, already. I just gave you 7-8 movies complete with post-credits scenes.

So the question is, who could possibly 'replace' Harrison Ford and Billy D. Williams?2

To the latter, I give the answer which, when it occurred to me precipitated this entire tirade:

Donald Glover.

Looks like BuzzFeed had the idea already, when Donny topped their list of 12 actors best suited for the role. Taking into consideration that he's the only one who is age appropriate and looks anything like Billy D., he's the only choice for me. Don Lando in 2015. (Hashtag #DonLando please.)

For Han, I'm going to go out on a limb and name an actor who's youthful-looking enough to play Han from the ages of about 18/19 up to the 29 of A New Hope as he continues to age through about 6 years of film making. He's got a jawline, the cockeyed smirk, the build, and–this is both a point for and against him–he's got a pre-existing relationship with the Disney Corporation. He's since done adult roles, and reportedly says "nigger" in his upcoming The Paperboy.

Coached well, Zac Efron would make a solid Han Solo.3

1 Utterly made up statistic.
2 If you say "Shia LaBeouf" I will murder you with a flying saucer.
3 Efron does not get a Photoshopped picture. I'm not that committed to this idea. 

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