Why Al Pacino Passed on Han Solo and Changed Harrison Ford’s Career Path

Al Pacino Almost Played Han Solo in “Star Wars”

Al Pacino is known for his unforgettable performances in movies like ‘The Godfather’, ‘Serpico’, and ‘The Price of Power, earning him a spot as one of the best actors of his generation. However, it might come as a surprise to some that he almost took a different path in the 1970s. Pacino was almost cast as the rebel smuggler, Han Solo, in “Star Wars” alongside Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Alec Guinness, and Peter Mayhew.

The 82-year-old actor was discussing his long career during a chat on 92nd Street in New York when he recalled his ‘Star Wars moment. He explained that he was offered so many projects at the time since it was the hot news. However, he turned down the role, stating that he didn’t understand the script. Pacino joked that because he didn’t play Han Solo, he brought Harrison Ford to stardom.

“Well, I turned down ‘Star Wars’. When I first got there, I was the new kid in the office. You know what happens when you first get famous. It’s like, ‘Give it to Al.’ Queen Elizabeth to play him. They didn’t care if he was right for the part or not if he could act or not. I was given a script called ‘Star Wars’. They offered me so much money… but I didn’t understand it. I read it. So I said I couldn’t do it. I gave Harrison Ford a career.”

This wasn’t the first time that Pacino turned down a major role. In previous interviews, he revealed that he turned down the role of John McClane in ‘Die Hard’, making the same joke that he gave the role to Bruce Willis.

Behind the Scenes

During the chat, Pacino also shared some anecdotes from his work, such as the time he burned his hand with a gun while filming the iconic ending of ‘The Price of Power’.

“One day, we were shooting, fighting, ‘Say hello to my little friend’, I shot thirty rounds, I get hit, the gun drops, and I’m supposed to be hurt. I go to pick it up, raise the gun, and put my hand on the barrel. My hand got stuck, and I had to go to the hospital. I was out of filming for two weeks.”

Even though Pacino passed on the opportunity to play Han Solo, he undoubtedly left his mark in Hollywood through his impressive career and unforgettable performances on screen.

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