Greedo actor Paul Blake reveals the existence of a shoot-out scene with Han Solo (Harrison Ford) that was deleted from Star Wars: A New Hope. The character of Greedo was just a minor player in Star Wars: A New Hope – a Rodian bounty hunter in the employ of Jabba the Hutt, Greedo met his unfortunate end at the hands of smuggler Han Solo, who blasted the green alien into oblivion in the back of the Mos Eisley cantina. And that should have been the last we heard about the ineffectual Greedo, but then of course George Lucas decided to tamper with his original trilogy by re-editing Greedo’s death scene to make Han Solo seem less of a cold-blooded killer. Fans who refused to buy Lucas’ shoddy retcon job championed their cause by adopting the rallying cry “Han shot first.” Thus Greedo grew from an obscure minor character into a kind of legend.
Fans may think there would be nothing more to be revealed about Greedo, Han, Jabba or any of the major and minor characters who appeared in the Mos Eisley sequence of A New Hope, but that’s not the case. One of the actors who played Greedo, Paul Blake (for certain shots the character was played by actress Maria De Aragon), was recently asked to discuss the Greedo legacy and dropped a new bit of information about a lost scene that only adds to the legend of Han Solo and Star Wars.
Sci Fi Central has been doing a series of interviews with over 100 actors who have appeared in a Star Wars movie, and when they caught up with Paul Blake, the actor told them about a scene he shot with Ford at Docking Bay 94 in Mos Eisley that was cut from the final film. Blake began by talking about the well-known scene in which Jabba the Hutt threatens Han Solo in the docking bay, a scene that was shot for A New Hope but was excised from the film, only to be resurrected for the 1997 Special Edition with a CGI Jabba inserted over the human actor who originated the role. Blake explained that he played one of the Rodians in the background of that scene, then talked about another sequence he shot that built up to the scene where the Millennium Falcon flees Mos Eisley with Han, Chewbacca and their famous passengers aboard:
Absolutely I was the Rodian in that, that’s right. And in fact there’s a brilliant little sequence which I loved doing with Harrison [Ford], where we were shooting at each other like cowboys and Indians. We had this big gun battle which lasted all morning and then Stormtroopers came out of the big double doors and we started firing at them. So we had this fantastic scene and of course that’s all gone. But I’m sure George [Lucas] has got that all at Skywalker Ranch.
In the finished film, instead of the big shoot-out which ends with Han and the Rodian teaming up to shoot at Stormtroopers, we see Han prepping the Falcon to leave when Stormtroopers burst through the double-doors described by Blake. Solo exchanges fire with the Stormtroopers briefly before boarding the Falcon and taking off.
The sequence described by Blake might have been fun to watch, but probably would have unnecessarily muddled the action at that particular point in the film. Lucas’ decision to remove the shoot-out between Han and the second Rodian played by Blake (an angry relative of the deceased Greedo perhaps?) was likely done for pacing as much as anything else. It is sort of cool to imagine Han and one of Jabba’s minions teaming up to blast away at Stormtroopers; it makes sense that, in the grand scheme of things, Han and the other random criminals of the galaxy would hate the Empire more than they hated each other.
If the deleted scene Blake described does survive somewhere in Skywalker Ranch, it might be nice to see it included on some future collection of Star Wars: A New Hope DVD extras. It doesn’t appear that Lucasfilm has any desire to re-release the first trilogy in their original theatrical cuts, but putting out all the deleted material in Lucas’ vault might be a nice consolation prize for disappointed fans.
KEY RELEASE DATES
Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi release date: Dec 15, 2017
Untitled Han Solo Star Wars Anthology Film release date: May 25, 2018
Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: Episode IX release date: May 24, 2019