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What if Al Pacino had played Han Solo in ‘Star Wars’?
THE BACKSTORY: Pacino in the mid-’70s is what all actors dream of. Fame from The Godfather led to three straight Best Actor nominations from 1973 to 1975. At some point a screenplay landed in his lap for a movie that at the time was still known as The Star Wars. The filmmakers wanted Pacino to play a swaggery smuggler… with a giant teddy-bear co-pilot, or something? During “An Evening With Pacino” in London in 2013, he told the audience of the role that made Harrison Ford the world’s most successful ex-carpenter, “It was mine for the taking.” There was just one problem, he added: “I didn’t understand the script.” A few months after Star Wars arrived, Pacino’s hot streak ended with the flop Bobby Deerfield. In his long career, he’s had high highs and low lows, but with Disney making a couple dozen Star Wars movies, maybe there’s a new role in the franchise in his future?
THE VERDICT: Probably for the best. This was still the age of Subtle Pacino, and it’s hard to imagine his Method line readings chewing on George Lucas’ dialogue. (A more fun counterfactual: envisioning a Scarface-era Pacino shooting Greedo with a laser machine gun.) — Darren Franich
Image Credit: PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY RICHARD ROBERTS for EW; A New Hope: Lucasfilm; Pacino: Everett Collection
December 8 2015 — 12:01 PM EST