Alden Ehrenreich

Though it’s been reported for months, it’s now official. Alden Ehrenreich will play young Han Solo in an upcoming standalone “Star Wars” film. The announcement was made at the final panel during Star Wars Celebration, with Ehrenreich taking the stage, along with directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller, to talk about the unique casting process.

Lord and Miller revealed that in total they saw 3,000 men to find a young Han, but in the end it was a waste of money as the first guy they auditioned — Ehrenreich — was the clear pick for the role. For the young actor, the honor is a childhood dream come true as he brought pictures of his Han action figure with him to Celebration to prove just how much he loves the character.

That love came full circle during the auditioning process, though. Once he was one of the finalists for the role, Ehrenreich had to do a very special screen-test. According to Lord and Miller, he not only had to test in the Millennium Falcon, but with Chewbacca.

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After all, what kind of Han Solo doesn’t have excellent chemistry with both his iconic ship and his best friend Chewie?

The entire experience still leaves Ehrenreich largely speechless. All he could offer was a simple, “As a kid, this character especially, you play make believe and imagine what it would be like.” Now he knows and will get to find out for some time to come.

The still-untitled Han Solo movie isn’t heading to theaters too soon. Lord and Miller revealed they’ve just now relocated to London to begin preparations and finish working on the script. If all goes according to plan, they expect to roll camera in late January or early February 2017. The movie is set for theater in 2018.

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However, when the time comes for a Blu-ray release, we beg of you Lucasfilm — please include Ehrenreich’s screen-test with Chewbacca.