Screenwriter Jon Kasdan has let slip a surprising detail about a character that was cut from Solo: A Star Wars Story, the 2018 Star Wars spin-off that he co-wrote with his father Lawrence Kasdan.
Responding to a fan on Twitter about a character named Korso - who appears in a “sticker book” for the film but not the finished movie - Kasdan revealed the character was initially envisioned as “Lando’s big brother” in early drafts of the script.
Intergalactic scoundrel Lando Calrissian, played in the Original Trilogy and The Rise of Skywalker by Billy Dee Williams and in Solo by Donald Glover, doesn’t have a family in the current canon and so this revelation would have added an interesting wrinkle to the film and changed Star Wars lore as we know it.
The character, played by New Zealand actor John Tui, was part of Beckett’s (Woody Harrelson) crew but, as Kasdan explains, his part ended up on the cutting room floor “just before lock” to simplify the story.
KORSO. The muscle in Beckett's crew who died in battle shortly after they crash-landed on Mimban. Korso was in every draft of the script (including an early version where he was Lando's big brother) and every cut of the movie 'til just before lock when he was removed to simplify. https://t.co/Lg92uW9t9f
— Jon Kasdan (@JonKasdan) September 1, 2019
However, it was too late to remove Korso from three books released to support the film.
Speaking about the character previously, Kasdan shared that Korso can still be seen in some shots of the film during the Mimban sequence which threw young Han Solo (Alden Ehrenreich) into battle as a swamp trooper while going through his Imperial training.
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“[John Tui’s] performance was great but, given the hectic environment, it became confusing to introduce that character we were going to immediately kill of [sic],” explained Kasdan on Twitter.
“The original logic for Korso, who was rather a large man, was that Beckett had lost his muscle and Chewie is a useful replacement.”
It’s on Mimban that Han first meets Chewbacca and rescues him from Imperial slavery before both join Beckett’s outlaw crew. How Korso’s death would have affected the introduction of Lando later in the film remains unclear.
Due to the long development and post-production time surrounding Star Wars films, it’s not the first time a character has appeared in supporting merchandise before being cut from the film at the last minute.
In 2015’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Jakku residents Sarco Plank and Constable Zuvio both featured in promotional stills for the film and got supporting action figures but barely appeared in the final film.
Korso lives on in in the novelisation of Solo: A Star Wars Story and two supporting books: Solo: A Star Wars Story Ultimate Sticker Collection and The Art of Solo: A Star Wars Story.
Every Star Wars character eventually gets an action figure one day, so hopefully Korso’s day will come too.
John Tui can currently be seen in Fast & Furious: Hobbs & Shaw.