Lucasfilm's new trilogy of Star Wars films has seen the return of iconic characters like Han Solo, Luke Skywalker and Leia Organa. Despite our joy at seeing these characters' continued adventures, neither The Force Awakens nor The Last Jedi had even a passing mention of what Lando Calrissian has been up to since Return of the Jedi. Despite being absent from his film, The Last Jedi writer/director Rian Johnson hopes to see Billy Dee Williams reprise his iconic role in the future.
"God, I hope we do, I love that character so much," Johnson shared with Entertainment Tonight about if Lando will return. "And I think, especially when they see him in Solo, they're going to want to see more of him immediately. As a Star Wars fan, I'm just crossing my fingers we'll get to see Billy Dee back in the cape."
Given the secretive nature of Star Wars films, fans were holding out hope that Lando could appear in the most recent film, yet Johnson attempted to warn them ahead of time.
"He's not in the film and it was never really something that came up. I mean, I loved that character," Johnson shared with Entertainment Weekly ahead of the film's release. "It would have been fun to see him, but it's just not something that ever really had a place in the story."
With Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher all returning to the saga, Williams could easily have had hurt feelings, but his manager, Brad Kramer, claimed that wasn't the case.
"Billy respects the studio and all involved in the decision but would be happy to be in any future Star Wars film if asked," Kramer told EW.
Johnson may have ultimately opted out of Lando's inclusion, he did toy with the character making a brief appearance.
"In terms of Lando, I briefly considered — would he work in the Benicio [del Toro] part, [DJ]," Johnson explained to The Playlist. "I don't think you would ever buy that Lando would just completely betray the characters like that and have that level of moral ambiguity. Because we love Lando and you'd come into it with that [expectation]. And also, DJ, the character that they met, for the purposes of Finn's character, had to be a morally ambiguous character that you're not sure about, that you're guessing about, and we already know that we love the character of Lando so it just wouldn't have played in that part story-wise."
Donald Glover plays Lando in Solo: A Star Wars Story, which hits theaters on May 25.
The Last Jedi is in theaters now.
[H/T Entertainment Tonight]