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Han shot first – definitive proof. Can we let this go now, please?

March 2nd, 2016 by Matt Gault Comments


It’s easily the most contentious debate in Star Wars fandom; did Han Solo shot first? Well, according to many a fan’s t-shirt, the answer would be yes, yes he did. When A New Hope was originally released in 1977, it was undoubtedly Han shooting Greedo first. Then, much to the chagrin of hardened fans, George Lucas digitally modified the scene in question during his remastered special editions.

Fans were enraged. Lucas didn’t really care. The debate rumbled on for years.

Now, Chewbacca actor Peter Mayhew has posted pages from his original script, via Squareeyed, and they definitively settle the debate once and for all (although many fans will have made peace with it years ago).

Interestingly, a copy of the original Star Wars script was found in the University of New Brunswick Library last year, deep in the archives and collecting dust.

“I’ll tell you one thing, right now,” librarian Kristian Brown pointed out at the time. “Based on the script, I can tell you 100 per cent, Han shot first.” It also has differences including the subtitle Saga 1, instead of Episode IV, and Luke Skywalker’s name actually being Luke Starkiller.

Now, Mayhew has backed this up with his own script, saying ‘Han Shot First. Period.’

The scene from Mayhew’s script is interesting in that it shows Solo to be a murderous rogue in the time before he came one of the galaxy’s biggest heroes.

Let’s see how you can wriggle your way out of this one, Mr. Lucas.

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Matt Gault is a sports writer and film fanatic. He is a fully-qualified journalist and has worked for BBCNI, Sunday Life and has been published on The Guardian's website. He interns at REDNI, sub-editing for the Belfast Telegraph. He studied at Queen's University pretending to like history and literature and then University of Ulster Coleraine, where he slacked off enormously for a year and somehow got away with it. He also enjoys Captain Morgans, The Sopranos, Led Zeppelin and Hunter S. Thompson which makes him a remarkably uninteresting person.