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Alden Ehrenreich will play a young Han Solo in new 'Star Wars' spin-off movie. (Photo: John MacDougall/AFP/Getty Images)

After months of searching, a casting call that saw as many as 2,500 actors, and one shortlist later, execs behind the new Han Solo spin-off movie have chosen their lead actor.

Deadline reports the coveted role will go to 26-year-old Alden Ehrenreich, most recently seen in Coen brothers’ movie Hail, Caesar!. He’s believed to have beaten Taron Egerton (Kingsman, Eddie the Eagle) and Jack Reynor (Transformers: Age of Extinction) to the part.

Alden’s certainly got a task ahead of him. Arguably the most popular character of the Star Wars franchise, Solo needs to be funny, charming and able to handle the odd action scene, not to mention resemble a young Harrison Ford, who first played the space hero in George Lucas‘s original 1977 movie.

Written by father-son team Lawrence and Jon Kasdan and directed by The Lego Movie’s Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, the as-yet-unnamed spin-off will tell Solo’s origin story before he links up with the rebel alliance in Episode IV: A New Hope. According to The Wrap, that means Chewbacca will play a key part, with bounty hunter Boba Fett making a possible appearance.

There’s still plenty of time for the other roles to be filled. The movie starts filming in January, with a view to it opening in theaters on May 25, 2018.

This is the sound we made on finding out we’ve got another two years to wait until we see what Alden makes of the role:

Hrrng. C’mon now, though, after three: Chewie, we’re almost home.

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Filed Under: Alden Ehrenreich, Han Solo
By Kat Sommers
Kat is a freelance writer for Anglophenia.