'Solo' locks in key 'Star Wars' veteran

Jon Burlingame

Solo will stay in the Star Wars family with veteran franchise composer John Williams set to write the theme for the standalone film about Han Solo, slated for release on May 25. It will be Williams’ ninth assignment.

Williams revealed his involvement in Solo: A Star Wars Story during in an interview with Variety about his current Star Wars opus, The Last Jedi. “The present plan is that I’m writing a theme for Han Solo, and John Powell is going to write the score, which he’ll do brilliantly,” Williams says.

Powell was announced as the primary composer for Solo back in July. “His assignment is something I’m very happy about,” Williams adds. “What I will do is offer this to John, and to [director] Ron Howard, and if all parties are happy with it, then I will be happy. … John [Powell] will complete the score. He will write all the rest of the themes and all of the other material, which I’m going to be very anxious to hear.”

Williams has written the complete scores for all eight of the main Star Wars films, winning an Oscar for the 1977 original and nominations for three of the other seven. The earlier Star Wars standalone, 2016’s Rogue One, was scored by Michael Giacchino.

Last summer’s announcement about Powell indicated that it would be “scored in the style of the original Star Wars movies but retain Powell’s distinctive voice.”

London-born, Los Angeles-based Powell, a 2010 Oscar nominee for his score for the animated How to Train Your Dragon, has also scored the Bourne action franchise, United 93 and a number of other animated films including this year’s Ferdinand, as well as the Happy Feet and Rio movies.

In the new film, Aiden Ehrenreich will play a young Han Solo, the beloved character immortalized by Harrison Ford in the original trilogy and then again in 2015’s The Force Awakens.

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