Solo: A Star Wars Story explores the early days of the young dashing space smuggler whose roguish behavior often got him into trouble, sometimes in more ways than one. But the scoundrel always has a heart of gold, and we get to see the person he becomes in the origins film.
But it all took an entertaining unexpected turn when Darth Maul reappeared, double-bladed light-saber, robot legs, and all. Though his cameo was very limited, it did lay the foundation for his impending evil for future films. It also marked the return of Ray Park, who reprises the physical role he played in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, while Sam Witwer reprises the voice role heard in Star Wars: Clown Wars and Star Wars Rebels animated series.
Recently, ThatsItLA was invited to check out the Blu-ray bonus features and chat with Ray Park about the role.
The Blu-ray features are pretty standard, behind the scenes stuff. But since this is Star Wars, we get some insight in the Wookie, the myth, the legend, Chewbacca, and how Joonas Suotamo got the role and what it takes to become the fuzzball. Additionally, we get to see how the suit was assembled and how mud could present a problem for a suit that needs to be dry.
A second feature we got to see is the creation of the Millennium Falcon. The generational changes this iconic ship goes through really shows as it first started out as sleek and shiny space ride into something that befits Solo.
The third bonus feature took a look at a roundtable between the cast and director Ron Howard. In it, you will get to hear how the cast broke the news to their loved ones and much more.
There are also gag reels and many other things to look forward to if you are a fan of both the spinoff and Star Wars itself.
Finally, we got to talk to Ray Park who plays Darth Maul.
What was it like to revisit Darth Maul almost 20 years after you first played him in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace?
Ray Park: Oh, I’ve been playing Darth Maul ever since! (Laughs)
What was the training regiment like at the time?
Park: When I played Darth Maul I was 22, fresh off competition. I was training 15 hours a day, my schedule was programmed out every day, plus coaching. So when I landed Phantom Menace, I was 22, I was just doing what I was doing from the competitions. Then when I played Snake Eyes, things change, training changes, so when I did get the call, I trained my backside off. I always tell my kids that if daddy ever gets that call again, he goes a little bit psycho – well not psycho, psycho – I have a gym at home, and if I am in there in four in the morning, there is a reason for it. To get that call was the best. I couldn’t tell my wife or anyone. But it was the best training I had for eight months.
So what is it like to come back to Star Wars?
Park: In the script, in the beginning, we always knew that Darth Maul was going to get killed off. Originally, we tried to pitch that my head would be chopped off. You know when Obi-Wan is looking [up] and I am looking down and taunting him. I’ll be honest with you, we were like, maybe like, eight feet up, and I wasn’t wired in, and I had to be like this and looking down. I was really scared because I didn’t want to fall down. I had to be really menacing. But they told me that if I had my head chopped off, there was no way George [Lucas] would bring you back. There is no coming back from that.
So does that mean you would like a rematch with Obi-Wan if there is ever an Obi-Wan movie?
Park: As a fan, and I hear all different fan stories and different theories, it would be good too, as a fan, it would be nice not to “we meet, we fight, and that’s it.” It would be nice for things to happen if anything ever happened. I am not confirming anything. But we joked on set because we knew we would have my legs chopped off. So, Andreas Petrides, the assistant stunt coordinator, said: “You know, they can do a sub movie, and you can be on a hoverboard with your double-bladed lightsaber, and the title could be Obi-Wan: The Quest For Legs.” It’s a silent movie with me just grunting.
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