“I want Solo to bomb spectacularly at the box office, mercilessly mauled by critics. I want an army of furious Star Wars fans out in force, furiously Tweeting with their finger firmly on the caps lock button, launching wave upon wave of angry reaction gifs,” Di Placido wrote. “[It] doesn’t matter how good the film is, frankly, because I hate the idea. Solo is Hollywood at its most cynical, squeezing every last drop of blood from an iconic character until he’s nothing but a faded husk, played by Alden Ehrenreich.”
It is, of course, impossible to quantify what percentage of the Star Wars fan nation is actively wishing for Solo not to succeed at the box office — and that standpoint is not likely reflective of a majority of fans. But in the months before its all-but-inevitable promotional blitz, it’s fair to say the movie is already polarizing the franchise’s faithful like no installment before it.
“I think there was some skepticism from the very beginning,” says Brandon Rhea, the content manager at Fandom and operator of the Wookieepedia Twitter feed. “I don’t think it’s an invalid question to ask, ‘Why do we need a prequel movie about Han Solo?’ So all the trailers and the marketing are going to have to sway people away from that skepticism and sell the idea that this is a story worth telling.”