Angry ‘Star Wars’ Fans Wish This Deleted Scene Had Been In the Movie

Almost every movie that gets made has scenes left on the cutting room floor. However, few movies are creating a furor over deleted scenes like the Star Wars sequel trilogy. 

Fans had already been annoyed at reports that actors from the prior Star Wars movies, such as Hayden Christensen, had supposedly filmed a scene for The Rise of Skywalker, but some fans believe that scene was cut and more or less replaced by a scene that featured only those actors’ voices.

Some fans are still disgruntled over a scene involving the aftermath of Han Solo’s death that had been slated for The Force Awakens. 

JJ Abrams on the red carpet
J.J. Abrams | Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for Disney

‘The Rise of Skywalker’ used footage deleted from ‘Force Awakens’

With JJ Abrams returning to the director’s chair for The Rise of Skywalker, he faced an unenviable problem. Each of the three movies in the sequel trilogy was supposed to revolve around an original trilogy character. Force Awakens mostly dealt with Han, The Last Jedi was largely Luke’s show, and The Rise of Skywalker was supposed to focus on Leia. 

Sadly, Carrie Fisher died unexpectedly shortly after completing The Last Jedi. Lucasfilm had to figure out how to fill the giant hole her passing had left behind. With the blessing of Fisher’s family.

Lucasfilm decided to repurpose footage the actress had shot for Force Awakens and work it into the conclusion of the Skywalker saga. 

Opinions vary about how well this solution worked. Some found the footage of Leia awkward, with the dialogue too obviously written around her scenes. Co-writer Chris Terrio even pointed to the problems with Leia’s footage as the reason Rose Tico had a diminished role. Others were happy just to see Leia one last time, and now they retroactively want to see more of her. 

Fans wanted more time to mourn Han Solo

Once Han perished in The Force Awakens, fans noticed that the movie didn’t mourn him a great deal. Rey seemed to react to his passing more than Leia did, and all we saw from Chewbacca was the initial burst of rage when Kylo Ren killed his own father. 

Screen Rant reports that there was an additional scene involving Chewbacca and Leia dealing with the loss of Han, but it ended up getting cut from the movie.

Good scenes get cut from movies all the time, often to improve pacing. What upset fans is this deleted scene did not appear on the Force Awakens home video release. 

Actor Joonas Suotamo, who brings Chewbacca to life in the sequel trilogy, told The Hollywood Reporter:

“My take on The Force Awakens‘ missed hug was that Chewie was so preoccupied with helping Finn that his time to grieve and hug people came later … The thought process behind it was a little bit different than what ended up being in the film, and those kinds of things always affect the final decision-making on the day.”

Han Solo’s death was one issue ‘Skywalker’ did resolve

Some fans have misgivings about The Rise of Skywalker, with the filmmakers admitting the production was rushed. However, fans got one nice surprise that gets into spoiler territory, so beware if you haven’t seen the movie yet. 

For one thing, Chewbacca got to have a particularly emotional, anguished reaction to Leia’s death, and the filmmakers may have included this to make up for the moment missing from The Force Awakens. Having already been stricken by Han’s death, now the Wookiee has to live without another person he loved. 

However, the greatest healing of all came from Han himself, via a surprise, uncredited Harrison Ford cameo. As Kylo Ren/Ben Solo struggles to reconcile himself with his misdeeds, his father appears to him in a vision and forgives him for having turned to the Dark Side of the Force.

This was particularly meaningful, coming from Han, who is not given to emotional displays. That moment helped provide the closure fans had been looking for – better late than never.