Sorry Lando fans, Star Wars: The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson has confirmed that Billy Dee Williams won’t be making a cameo in the eighth film in the saga.
Many fans had hoped Lando would return for ‘The Last Jedi’, but in a new interview with Entertainment Weekly Johnson said the idea was never discussed during development.
“[Lando’s] not in the film and it was never really something that came up,” Johnson said. “I mean, I loved that character. It would have been fun to see him, but it’s just not something that ever really had a place in the story.”
First introduced in Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back, Lando was an old acquaintance of Han Solo’s who was forced to work with the Empire in order to save his own skin as the leader of Bespin, the Cloud City.
He soon realised the error of his ways after being double-crossed by Darth Vader, and became a big hero of the Rebellion piloting the Millennium Falcon during the Battle of Endor. Billy Dee Williams, now 80, has reprised the role a number of times, including recently in Disney’s animated series, Star Wars: Rebels.
Williams’ manager Brad Kramer says his client remains optimistic about returning to the live action films in the future. “Billy respects the studio and all involved in the decision but would be happy to be in any future Star Wars film if asked,” Kramer told EW.
Lando is due to return in 2018’s Solo: A Star Wars Story, with Donald Glover playing the younger incarnation of the character.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi flies into UK cinemas on 14 December, alas without Lando.