Mark Hamill didn’t want to return to Star Wars, and he knew that he had a defense against saying no to 2015’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Harrison Ford would never agree to playing Han Solo again. And then he did.
“I was just really scared,” Hamill admitted in a New York Times profile. “I thought, why mess with it? The idea of catching lightning in a bottle twice was ridiculously remote.”
Thankfully, there was Ford, who had until that point distanced himself from the franchise.
“He’s too old and too rich and too cranky … He’s not going to do this” is how Hamill recalls his attitude to the Times. But when Ford agreed to return, Hamill had no bluff left to call, and realized that he had to come back as well. Or, as he puts it, “Can you imagine if I was the only one to say no? I’d be the most hated man in nerd-dom.”
On the plus side, at least he managed to avoid almost all of The Force Awakens. Although, as he now admits, that felt like a risk in and of itself. “If it smacks the audience as a cheat or a gimmick, if there’s a big groan in the house, the egg’s on my face, not J.J.’s,” he remembered about his apprehension for being the movie’s last scene reveal.
Thankfully, he later came around to the idea, saying, “When they talk about you that much in a movie before you even show up, that’s fabulous.”