“Han shot first” has been a rallying cry of Star Wars purists ever since George Lucas’ 1997 rerelease of the first movie, in which the director inserted some digital effects in the famous Cantina scene that made it seem like the green-faced alien Greedo fired his gun first at Han Solo. And ever since, Lucas has insisted that Han’s killing of Greedo was always intended as self-defense. Not wild-west murder, as the edit of the film’s original cut clearly implies—mistakenly, per Lucas.
Well, here comes another wrinkle in that galactic, Zapruderish argument—courtesy of Canada’s University of New Brunswick in Saint John. A librarian named Kristian Brown discovered what looks to be a shooting script, dated March 15, 1976, for the original Star Wars. And in it, the screen directions reinforce the notion that our beloved rogue hero was maybe not the paradigm of virtue that Lucas would like us to believe.
“I’ll tell you one thing, right now,” Brown told Canada’s CBC News. “Based on the script, I can tell you 100 percent, Han shot first.”
In the CBC video, the blue-bound screenplay—which is stamped with the Lucasfilm Ltd. seal and lugubriously entitled The Adventures of Luke Starkiller as Taken From the “Journal of the Whills—we can briefly see the scene in question. “Suddenly the slimy alien disappears in a blinding flash of light,” the screenplay reads, “Han pulls his smoking gun from beneath the table as the other patrons look on in bemused amazement.”
And no mention of the slimy green alien firing his weapon first.
Lucasfilm did not immediately return requests for comment. But the company has seperately confirmed that the script found in Canada seems authentic, likely not an original version, but a Star Wars conventioneer’s copy of the real thing.