Star Wars fans shouldn't expect a similar promotional blitz for the upcoming spinoff film that they're used to from The Last Jedi, The Force Awakens, and even Rogue One, but that doesn't mean Lucasfilm won't have the tie-in stories we're used to.
It's not a full blown "Journey to Solo," but it is a substantial offering of new stories that focus on Han Solo, Lando Calrissian, and Chewbacca, as well as other new characters we'll get to know in the upcoming spinoff movie.
Fans can expect the usual array of novels, comics, and guidebooks that have become the norm for Star Wars releases, with offerings from publishers such as Del Rey, Marvel Comics, and IDW.
Lucasfilm Publishing creative director Michael Siglain spoke about the various stories people can expect to see, timed to the release of Solo: A Star Wars Story. Read on to find out more about the new tales featuring Han, Chewie, and the rest of the gang as featured in the upcoming Star Wars spinoff movie.
"Part of it takes place before the events of Solo and focuses on Lando and L3-37," said Siglain. "Part of it takes place between Solo and A New Hope, and that focuses on Han and Chewie, and that’s where we get Sana Starros for the first time ... Part of it takes place post-Return of the Jedi, and that's where we see Han, Leia, a very young Ben Solo, and Lando come into the story."
The mention of Sana Starros should make fans of the current Marvel run of storylines perk up, as the character was first introduced as Han's wife in Jason Aaron and John Cassady's run on the title.
"We bounce around through time," Siglain said. "We always wanted to tell a story that had Han and Lando having one adventure after Return of the Jedi. At the same time, we really liked the idea of contrasting that with seeing them much earlier in their lives. A crime lord comes looking for the owner of the Millennium Falcon, but mistakenly thinks it was Han Solo at the time, but it was really Lando — which gets Lando mixed up in something else Han did that was Han's fault. All these years later, the two of them have to right a wrong from much earlier in their history."
"This is about the younger, young Han Solo," Siglain said. "We'll see what it was like for these two kids from Corellia to survive the seedy streets of this industrial world. They're definitely products of their environment, and this story shows that."
Marvel Comics will finally get back into business with the coolest gambler in the galaxy, giving Lando Calrissian his second miniseries. This one, however, will be a prequel to the film's events. It will come out after the movie premieres and tie in closely to the film's events.
"It's focused on Lando set during an incident right before the film, with backstory about Lando and L3," Siglain said. "Coming out of the film, we think everyone is going to want to read more about Lando."
"This is another of those really beautiful art books that shows various pieces of concept art that went into this film," Siglain said. "You see the evolution of Solo through this book, and the insight that Phil gets from everyone in the production is incredible."
"This one combines the popular formats of a Visual Dictionary with part of a cross-sections book," Siglain said. "This gives you insight into the characters, and the props, vehicles, and tech that you see in the film. And it's written by [Lucasfilm story group member] Pablo Hidalgo, so we have it on good authority that all of this is correct."
This middle-grade book brings together three different subsections of the Star Wars universe as everyone's favorite Wookie interacts with what appears to be a Loth cat from Star Wars Rebels and the smarmy droid from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
"Chewbacca thinks it’s a dull babysitting job, but he not only has to save the day, but save Han Solo," Siglain said. "He gets mixed up with a droid he thinks is a cargo droid, but the readers will recognize as K-2SO, who is on a mission for Cassian Andor."
The Solo-centric story will kick off with an issue released as part of Free Comic Book Day, and will continue in issues #10 and #11 of IDW's anthology series. It will see Han and Chewie clash with the bounty hunters Zuckuss and 4-LOM.
"They're being chased by the bounty hunters and go to a planet they don't know ... Once they get into the atmosphere, everything shuts down and the Falcon crashes into the water," Siglain said. "Everything on this planet is powered down, and no technology works ... Then they figure out a way to turn it on and realize that was the worst mistake they could make — the planet comes alive and attacks them."
There are plenty more tie-in stories on the way, including a Choose Your Destiny novel, a new Little Golden Book, and a middle-grade retelling of the Marvel Comics' Chewbacca comic from Gerry Duggan and Phil Noto.
Fans can expect to see these on store shelves soon.
Solo: A Star Wars Story premieres in theaters on May 25th.