It’s very interesting to realize that the movies you loved watching while growing up were almost very different in some ways. The Millennium Falcon has been a mainstay of Star Wars for a long time, to think that it might have been created in a different image was something I didn’t know about until now, and to be honest I find myself even more grateful for its presence after listening to the clip below. Just think about things in Star Wars might have been affected had the Millennium Falcon, one of the most iconic ships of the franchise, had been given a different form.
Evidently the Falcon didn’t even get its name until later in production, and was known just as the ‘pirate ship’ for a while until it’s final form was determined. In the beginning it was a long, cylindrical ship with its engines located in the rear and the cockpit separated from the main body of the ship by a long corridor that sat between the two. Eventually the creators found that it looked a little too much like the spaceship from 2001: A Space Odyssey, and so they scrapped the idea and started over.
Eventually the idea started to resemble yet another famous starcraft and so had to be redone yet again. By this time the budget was really starting to get tight and the time spent on this single project was becoming a problem. Amazingly enough it was an idea that Lucas had while eating lunch that really gave the Falcon it’s final form. While eating a hamburger George Lucas had the idea to make the Millennium Falcon a saucer-shaped ship that had a side cockpit not unlike a B-Wing fighter. While the Falcon’s original purpose was to be a freighter the side cockpit would allow the pilot to maintain a visual on their cargo the entire time it was hooked up.
The design also allowed for a large number of upgrades and modifications that could enable the Falcon to be much more than a simple cargo loader. In the film Luke Skywalker goes so far as to call the Falcon a piece of junk, but the heavy and often illegal modifications, in the Star Wars universe, are what make the Falcon such a memorable vehicle. Han Solo and Chewbacca made a lot of the modifications on their own and as such the work was never entirely perfect and the Falcon was almost always prone to break down or flirt with the very real danger of flying apart.
No matter the danger it represented to its passengers however the Falcon was a highly reliable vehicle and became the most recognizable ship in the Star Wars franchise. Given an image of the Falcon and any other ship most people would likely recognize the Falcon first and foremost. Just imagine what the movie would have been like if the Falcon had been any different than what it is now.
When inspiration strikes it’s usually wise to pay attention, even if it’s during your lunch break.