In Star Wars - Episode IV: A New Hope, Han takes his reward for saving Leia and leaves Yavin before the Rebel Alliance sets out to destroy the Death Star. At the last moment, when Luke is on his attack run and Vader is about to shoot his X-Wing down, the Millennium Falcon appears and gets the TIEs off Luke's tail.

Whose initial idea was it to go back and help the rebels - Han, or Chewbacca?

Note: This question was inspired by the new canonical novelization of the movie, titled Star Wars- New Hope: The Princess, the Scoundrel, and the Farm Boy, in which Chewbacca clearly wants to join the rebellion, but is overruled by Han.

And after the deed is done, we read:

Han shrugged. “Well, I wasn’t gonna let you have all the credit!”

Chewbacca growled behind Han, giving the captain a little shake.

“All right, all right, and because we wanted to make sure you got out of this mess in one piece!” Han said.

  • 1
    The implication is that they had an argument over it and eventually Han decided to do the right thing by Luke
    – Valorum
    Commented Jan 25, 2016 at 8:12
  • @Richard - Which suggests that Chewbacca was on the side of helping Luke, and Han was initially on the "Hell no" side?
    – Wad Cheber
    Commented Jan 25, 2016 at 8:15
  • @Richard - By the way, I miss you in chat. :(
    – Wad Cheber
    Commented Jan 25, 2016 at 8:16
  • I got the very strong impression that Han wanted Chewie to convince him.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jan 25, 2016 at 10:12
  • Ultimately in my opinion I think Han just wanted the credit to himself.
    – user59990
    Commented Jan 26, 2016 at 7:00

2 Answers 2


We see Han and Chewie's conversation (or rather, lack thereof) in the short animated film Han Solo - Taking flight for his friends. Han and Chewie repeat the conversation they had in the hanger. They each take a short moment to consider what's happening with Luke and Leia, then smile at each other as they come to the same decision at the same time.

Cue the voiceover. "In a Galaxy of adventures, a true hero returns to help his friends".

And with that, Han spins the controls and they join the fray.


Although there is no canon answer, based on what we know about Chewbacca and Han, it must have been Chewbacca who thought of and then pressed Han into helping.

Han truly is a scoundrel and talks his way out of situations and will run long before facing any threat given his own devices.

Chewbacca is honorable, not afraid of a fight and is an all around champion in the classic sense of the word.

Chewbacca is Han's closest and best friend and sometimes even his external conscious and so I think we are forced to accept Chewbacca as the progenitor of the idea. That's their character and for it to be otherwise would break both of their character molds.

  • +1. This lines up with my own feelings - Chewbacca and R2-D2 are my favorite characters in the series - but i wish there was either a canon or legends source to prove it.
    – Wad Cheber
    Commented Jan 26, 2016 at 14:54
  • Incorrect, there is a canon answer
    – Valorum
    Commented Feb 23, 2023 at 18:08
  • My answer is not wrong, that RETCON job came out 3 years after I provided my answer. Even if there is canon NOW, there wasn't canon when I gave my answer and it is as correct as it could have been.
    – Escoce
    Commented Mar 25, 2023 at 14:25

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