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Never say never! It wasn't exactly a big secret that Harrison Ford wanted his wisecracking smuggler, Han Solo, to be killed off by George Lucas in Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi. It was a 32 year wait, but Ford finally got his wish when Han Solo bit the dust at the hands of his own son in last year's Star Wars: The Force Awakens. But were we wrong to assume we had seen the last of the galaxy's Nerf herder?
During an interview with BBC, Ford told an interviewer:
Anything is possible in space. I wanted Han Solo to sacrifice himself for the good of the other characters to bring some gravitas to the story...I hope I bring an emotional understanding of the characters and something the audience will recognise. I want the audience to experience the character, not to feel that they know him but to be involved in seeing what happens to him.
We have already seen stars like Anakin, Yoda and Obi-Wan return to the franchise in the form of force ghosts, plus there are the inevitable flashbacks, so the door really is open on Han's return. We already know that Daisy Ridley's character Rey has the ability to conjure visions, as seen when she touched Luke Skywalker's lightsaber in Maz Kanata's watering hole.
What is confirmed though, is that a much younger Han will appear in a Star Wars spin-off, coming in 2018 and focussing on a Han and Chewie origin story. No title or casting has been confirmed for the bromance big screen outing, but we do know that the actors for the titular Han Solo have been narrowed down to Jack Reynor, Alden Ehrenreich, Emory Cohen or Taron Egerton.
As for the original Han, he already has a lot on his plate. During the interview Ford also expressed his delight at returning to his other big franchise, Indiana Jones, for a fifth outing:
I always thought there was an opportunity to come back...But I didn't want to do it without Steven [Spielberg] and a really good script.
Shooting recently got underway for Star Wars: Episode VIII and whilst Harrison Ford wasn't officially announced on the cast list, it is worth nothing that back in January a casting report said that the 73-year-old would reprise his role as Han Solo. Could he be the latest person to offer some Jedi-worthy advice from beyond the grave?
The Force Awakens arrives on DVD and digital home release in April, so now you can relive Han's heroic death over and over again.