Star Wars Has a New Chewbacca: Read Han Solo Actor’s ‘Ecstatic’ Statement Album

There’s a new Wookiee in town, or at least a new star putting on Chewbacca’s suit for the Han Solo spinoff. Peter Mayhew has played Chewie every time “Star Wars” needed him, until now. The 72-year-old actor was not listed among the cast members when the first Han Solo photo was released yesterday. Instead, it was noted that Joonas Suotamo was playing Chewbacca.


Turns out, Joonas Suotamo is a 30-year-old Finnish basketball player and actor/body double. The 6’10” star shared his excitement about the new role on Twitter, making sure to honor Peter Mayhew for creating and shaping the beloved character:

I’m ecstatic. It’s official. And here is my statement to this terrific piece of news

— Joonas Suotamo (@JoonasSuotamo) February 21, 2017

Peter Mayhew hasn’t shared anything about the transition yet, but he must’ve had some conversations with Joonas Suotamo about it. And, as Cinema Blend noted, Suotamo was the body double for Mayhew in “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” so it’s like a promotion at his existing workplace. That’s the two Chewies together in the photo above — from December 2015 — and here’s Suotamo with Luke Skywalker himself:

Happy birthday to the funniest and coolest Jedi Master I know @HamillHimself

— Joonas Suotamo (@JoonasSuotamo) September 26, 2016

Gonna go ahead and say it: New Chewie is hot, and he’s probably going to be very popular on the “Star Wars” circuit. Just a guess.

The Han Solo movie is scheduled for release May 25, 2018.

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