The original Han Solo reviews "Solo: A Star Wars Story."
It's daunting to step into a franchise as huge as "Star Wars," and for Alden Ehrenreich, it's more than just that -- he's replacing Harrison Ford as one of the most beloved characters in George Lucas' space opera
As if that wasn't pressure enough, the Hollywood legend that is the notoriously grumpy Ford has been unhappy with the character for decades, so much that he only agreed to reprise it for "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" if they agreed to kill him off.
Ehrenreich met Ford briefly over lunch early in the process for "Solo: A Star Wars Story" to get his blessing, but that was it, and Ford has had no involvement in the promotions for the upcoming film. At least, not until director Ron Howard set up an epic surprise for Ehrenreich during an interview with "Entertainment Tonight."
While talking about their one afternoon together, Ehrenreich had no idea Ford was sneaking up behind him until the screen legend told him, "Get out of my chair! Get out of my life!"
The screen legend didn't stick around long, but he did hang long enough to talk a little about his take on the new film and Ehrenreich's performance. "I just thought it was spectacular," he said. "And I thought he was so smart about what he did and how he did it. I just couldn’t be happier."
Ehrenreich could hardly compose himself after the encounter. "Wow! That's pretty unbelievable," he said softly.
The film's director was standing alongside Ford, having set up the whole thing. He later told ET, "I’ve known Harrison a long time. He can be great, he can be supportive. He’s never effusive. And he was so behind it and into it and loved what Alden did. So, I let Alden know that, but I would never even say that to the world, because you don’t speak for Harrison Ford."
It's possible Ehrenreich is still reeling from receiving such praise from the man himself. "That’s really special," he gushed. "His graciousness from the first time that I met him and then also him coming in and doing something like this, it just means the world 'cause he's a kind of partner with George Lucas in creating this part. He is this thing. He created it in a way that I think actors are usually just like serving somebody else’s vision."
If any fans were still on the fence about seeing "Solo: A Star Wars Story" when it hits theaters on May 25, it just got a pretty major endorsement for fanboys and fangirls everywhere.