One of the most enduring debates in the “Star Wars” universe has been over whether or not Han Solo shot Greedo first in “Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope.” In the original theatrical version, the editing seemed to suggest that Han beat Greedo to the punch, but Lucas, forever tinkering with his “Star Wars” movies, later re-cut the scene to indicate that Greedo pulled the trigger first. It’s a change that still rankles fans, but Lucas has long defended his alteration.
“…what I did was try to clean up the confusion, but obviously it upset people because they wanted Solo [who seemed to be the one who shot first in the original] to be a cold-blooded killer, but he actually isn’t,” Lucas explained in 2012. “It had been done in all close-ups and it was confusing about who did what to whom. I put a little wider shot in there that made it clear that Greedo is the one who shot first, but everyone wanted to think that Han shot first, because they wanted to think that he actually just gunned him down.”
The recent digital release has kept this change intact, and as for Harrison Ford, don’t ask him about his thoughts on it. “I don’t [k]now and I don’t care,” he said last year. However, fans now have a new piece of evidence to consider.
CBC reports that in the archives of the University of New Brunswick library, the original script of “Star Wars” has been discovered. How original? Dated March 15, 1976 (a little more than year before the movie opened), this apparent fan-made replica of the fourth draft of the script, refers to the story as “Saga I” and the film’s hero was named Luke Starkiller. And there’s another crucial difference.
“I’ll tell you one thing, right now. Based on the script, I can tell you 100 per cent, Han shot first,” says librarian Kristian Brown.
How the script, which contains different character descriptions and scenes that didn’t make the final film, ended up in New Brunswick isn’t clear, but the Han-shot-first side of the argument just got another boost.