SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Solo: A Star Wars Story, in theaters now:
Arguably the biggest shocker in the latest Star Wars anthology film, Solo: A Star Wars Story, was the surprise cameo by the main antagonist of The Phantom Menace, Darth Maul. Now that this revelation is finally in the ether, co-writers Jon and Lawrence Kasdan has shed some light on how, exactly, Maul's inclusion in the film came to be.
“It was a sneaky ass process that I was fighting for all along,” Jon told io9. “I’ve [always] been a big Darth Maul fan. He was my favorite character in the prequel trilogy and I was determined that Dryden was not the top of the food chain. We both wanted the criminal underworld to feel way bigger than we could see in this movie. And that Han would be a minnow surrounded by sharks.”
“The larger theme is everybody works for somebody,” Lawrence said. “Evil or good, you’re not in control of your destiny, which is very important to us.”
“Everybody serves some greater God or is mastered by something,” Jon added. “And you know that [Maul] works for somebody,” Lawrence said.
“The thing about Maul is that he is a character freighted with baggage,” Jon continued. “From losing his mentor, from his defeat [at the hands of Obi-Wan Kenobi], from his long journey post that defeat, the Clone Wars, the Shadow Collective, we thought this is a character who comes with so much narrative richness that to glimpse him has power and the promise of stories to come.”
In theaters now, director Ron Howard’s Solo: A Star Wars Story stars Alden Ehrenreich as Han Solo, Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian, Emilia Clarke as Qi’ra, and Joonas Suotamo as Chewbacca. They’re joined by Thandie Newton as Val, Phoebe Waller-Bridge L3-37, Paul Bettany as Dryden Vos and Woody Harrelson as Tobias Beckett.