The first two "Star Wars" spin-off films will focus on Han Solo's origin story, and the "rogue's gallery of galactic scum" in bounty hunter Boba Fett's world, Entertainment Weekly reported today.
Yesterday,that it would be releasing a series of spin-off films built around individual "Star Wars" characters and produced alongside three forthcoming full-length "Star Wars" sequels. According to EW, the first two side projects will be about a young Han Solo and about Boba Fett.
"Several sources close to the projects confirmed this was the direction the development was taking," EW wrote, "although each cautioned it's still very early in the process, and, well, the deal could always be altered further."
Neither Disney nor Lucasfilm immediately responded to a request for comment from CNET.
Though Disney's announcement yesterday left out any mention of which characters would be the subjects of the new movies, Han Solo and Boba Fett were obvious choices. Among the others who could make compelling main characters are Yoda, Princess Leia, and even R2-D2 or C-3PO.
EW said the Han Solo film is expected to be placed in the time period between "Revenge of the Sith" (the last of the "Star Wars" prequels, otherwise known as Episode III) and the original "Star Wars," also known as Episode IV. "So although it's possible Harrison Ford (who played Han Solo) could appear as a framing device, the movie would require a new actor for the lead," wrote EW, "one presumably much younger than even the 35-year-old Ford when he appeared in the 1977 original.
"The Boba Fett film would take place either between (the original 'Star Wars') and 'The Empire Strikes Back,'" EW continued, "or between 'Empire' and 'Jedi,' where the bounty hunter was last seen plunging unceremoniously into a sarlac pit."
EW also noted that the likely timing of both the Han Solo and Boba Fett projects would allow for Darth Vader to play a role, as well as for another "Star Wars" heavy to get in on the act. "That timeline would also open the door for a return from...everyone's favorite degenerate slug-like gangster, Jabba the Hutt."
Forward progress on all the new "Star Wars" films began in earnest when, though it's unknown how much work had already been done on any of the new projects after longtime Hollywood producer Kathleen Kennedy to run Lucasfilm.