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EW continues its coverage of Solo: A Star Wars Story with a fascinating piece on Qi’ra, played by Emilia Clarke. The article confirms a ton of little things we had taken for granted or were just outright assumptions. I always particularly enjoy these pieces that are both guarded and telling at the same time as they get fans on the correct track to process the character coming into the extended Star Wars family on screen. As Anthony Breznican writes, “she’s a woman of many identities.” So in other words, she’s not always as she seems but she’s essentially grown up with Solo and there is something of a romantic past between them.
The characters Han meets in this story all represent a dimension of Han Solo. He’s a product of his experiences. In theory, it almost reminds me of how all the Sith lords we met in the prequels were somewhat of an element of the Darth Vader facade. I enjoy this idea for the Han story because in A New Hope we see Han start to pick up some of Luke’s idealistic ways and as the original trilogy continues, Solo essentially does take on aspects of the characters more “good” than he was when we first met him.
The article gets into how we clearly don’t see Qi’ra in the original trilogy or the sequel trilogy. She’s never talked about. So clearly something happens between her and Solo. What is interesting is that Clarke mentions “trust” in that discussion. It seems fairly likely that betrayal will take place between Qi’ra and Solo and maybe even more than once.
Clarke also goes on to say how funny the film is:
All the Star Wars films have got, obviously, a beautiful flavor of humor in them, but this … this gets to be Han Solo funny, which is not the comic interlude — the comic interlude is it.
I always hate it when men who are fans want women to qualify that they follow Star Wars or are real fans. I always felt like Alec Guinness wouldn’t watch Star Wars for fun and he’s Obi-Wan. So I never really personally care if the actors like the series or not, just that they do their job well. But what’s really actually pretty cool is reading Emilia Clarke discussing some of the deeper elements of The Last Jedi and how the economics of Canto Bight worked. She says that’s their element:
And that’s our world. I mean it’s not the racetracks, and not Canto Bight. But we have the main storyline talk about what the smuggling, gambling black market world is like. It’s dangerous and it’s sordid and it’s ugly, and it’s really, really dark. There are loads of different gangster-y elements running through it. It has been really fun to put Qi’ra in that. She has a couple of guises, but essentially she is just fighting to stay alive.
Clarke also says something really interesting about how elegantly dressed she is. Basically if you’re looking that good but you’re in the underworld, you’re hiding something and its a facade. So her character clearly is going to operate on a noir level that means she has several layers and that should be fun. We’ve only seen Indiana Jones in this type of situation on screen before and now we’re going to see Han Solo try and navigate it which should be really fun.
Check out the full interview Anthony Breznican conducted with Emilia Clarke. It is a great read. She seems pretty into the part and the conversation is what I’ve been waiting for the most.