Lawrence and Jonathan Kasdan On That Crazy Cameo In ‘Solo’ You Wouldn’t Have Expected In A Million Years


[This post contains big spoilers for Solo: A Star Wars Story.]

During the events of Solo: A Star Wars Story, we keep hearing about this mysterious underworld organization called Crimson Dawn. At the end of the film, Qi’ra kills the notorious crime boss Dryden Voss and that all seems to be that. The villain is dead! But, not really. Throughout the film we are given hints of an even more sinister boss who Dryden Voss reports to. After doing away with Voss, Qi’ra makes contact with the person who is actually running the organization.

And it is none other than our old friend … Darth Maul (with Ray Park returning to the role).

Well, now it’s just “Maul,” since he’s not really a Sith Lord any longer (there’s a fellow named Darth Vader who holds that title when the events of Solo take place). Maul has been back in both Clone Wars and Rebels so it’s probably not too shocking for fans of those shows to see Maul back with robotic legs, but for people who only watch the movies, this will be a rather surprising development.

We spoke to screenwriters Lawrence Kasdan and Jonathan Kasdan about the return of Maul, a character who Jonathan wanted to include in this movie since the very beginning.

“I was really passionate about him all the way through,” says Jonathan Kasdan. “I sort of had planted the seeds early and I wanted it to be built that way. And I wanted to reference certain forms of martial arts that might lead to it. And the presence of someone who was so terrifying in this crime world that you just had to know he was the guy who could control someone like Dryden. So he was part of the DNA of the thing.”

So, the inclusion of Maul as a tease at the end of this movie seems to set up a future showdown between Maul and Han Solo in another movie. But in the original Star Wars, Solo is pretty adamant he doesn’t believe in the Force. So would that make things difficult to introduce a Force user like Maul into a scene with Han Solo?

“I don’t think so,” says Lawrence Kasdan. “Because that’s part of what I love about this story. He doesn’t believe in the force and we know that ahead of time. But he doesn’t ever have to! The only acceptance he has – over three movies that I wrote! – is so slim. You know, he never really comes to believe. He’s always the skeptic.”

Jonathan Kasdan clarifies even further, noting something that Han Solo says in the original Star Wars. “The line we love,” says Jonathan Kasdan, “and keep referring to is, ‘we’ve seen some strange stuff across the galaxy.’ And we did really want to honor the line that he’s seen some weird stuff. And that’s why we thought it would be great for him to encounter a Jules Verne-type creature out in deep space, and made his experiences that have made his life rich and pressed the limits of what are possible.”

“For me,” says Lawrence Kasdan, “the moment is when J.J. and I were writing and, by chance, Jon happened to be with us and helped with Han’s death in The Force Awakens. In my mind, there’s not a moment before he dies when he thinks, Oh, now I believe in the Force.”

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