Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back Initially Had A More Brutal Han Solo Torture Scene – SlashFilm


It’s hard to blame Lucas too much for the decision to spare us Han’s torture scenes, as “Empire” was already a pretty dark movie. It’s a movie where all our heroes fail in some major, seemingly-irreversible way; Han’s captured, Luke loses a hand, and Leia makes out with her brother. Everyone’s taking L’s here, and maybe it was best to not rub that in too much. The Vader reveal alone was enough to horrify audiences; we didn’t need to watch Han get tortured to understand that we were watching the trilogy’s dreaded act II low point unfold before our eyes.

It also helps that the movie already includes a short glimpse of Han about to be tortured, followed by the sound of him screaming off-camera. The movie doesn’t linger on this much, but it gives us more than enough details to imagine what Han’s going through. “He won’t be harmed permanently,” Vader says — it’s technically reassuring, but considering Han’s screams are still lingering in our ears, it’s one of the villain’s most unsettling lines.

A similar situation played out in the “Star Wars” sequel movies, except this time it was Chewbacca who supposed to be shown getting tortured. There was meant to be a super dark, emotional scene where Kylo Ren would brutally interrogate our favorite furry friend in “The Rise of Skywalker,” but that was also thankfully cut from the finished product. Nobody wants to watch Han or Chewie get tortured, it seems. As many questionable choices as the “Star Wars” franchise has made over time, at least the movies have always seemed to understand this one basic rule: When things get too dark, sometimes it’s best to cut away.

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