In the mine in Solo, Chewbacca meets some other Wookiees. Are they from his family/tribe?

I assume from the Star Wars Christmas Special (which is still canon in my mind) which is set after the events of Solo that Chewie has his family back.


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    I think we're not meant to think so, because Han mentions that Chewie is looking for his "family, or tribe", but then there's no conversation about that after the mine escape. It seems like if anyone in that group of Wookiees was related to Chewie, or was an acquaintance of his family, then Chewie would've told Han about it. But of course any other canon or semi-canon source may say otherwise...
    – recognizer
    Jun 4, 2018 at 7:35
  • The official guide to Solo a Star Wars story tells us they are unrelated, I however don’t have it on me and therefore can’t reference any pages.
    – Edlothiad
    Jun 4, 2018 at 11:38
  • I would say the exactly opposite @recognizer. You can't really say whether Chewie and Han had a talk on screen even, that's why they don't subtitle Chewie but have always intentionally left what he is saying obscure. But that you think Han mentioning Chewie looking for his family/tribe once and then never again after Kessel does not imply what you think it does at all, it's inconclusive. However, you may have noticed that as far as Han and Chewie were concerned Chewie could come and go as he pleased, funny that they're inseparable only after the mine escape. Jun 4, 2018 at 12:35
  • Computer suggests no (according to the director)
    – Edlothiad
    Jun 4, 2018 at 20:27

2 Answers 2


According to the film's official novelisation they're just random enslaved Wookiees.

Chewie gave a roar of rage, seeing more Wookiees fall to the mobilizing sentinels. “Do you know them?” Han asked, uncertain.
Chewie gave him a withering look and a moan.
“Well I didn’t know,” he muttered. “I know they’re your people but we have a job to do. Remember, the plan?”

Solo: A Star Wars Story: Expanded Edition

The elder wookiee Sagwa later confirms that these are not even Chewie's tribe.

Sagwa pointed into the fray. Our tribe has procured a shuttle. They’re waiting for us to go home.

Solo: A Star Wars Story: Expanded Edition


That Chewbacca is a father and has a family is reintroduced as canon in Chuck Wendigo's Star Wars: Aftermath series, specifically in the 2nd book of the series Life Debt. The book also established Chewbacca's Life Debt to Han Solo as canon and it also establishes that the Life Debt extends to members of Solo's family, however the Life Debt is not explicitly mentioned in Solo: A Star Wars Story despite the fact that the events that led to Chewie owing Han a life debt clearly happen on screen in the movie. The novel mentions the event vaguely enough that it could be retconned if need be and the film offers no clarity on the issue.

My point is, wookiees do not pledge their life to someone on a whim and Han Solo never saves Chewbacca from slavery/captivity in the films, it is reasonable to conclude that Chewie pledges his life to Solo not because he saves Chewie but because Han Solo helps Chewbacca track down his family or at least it's because he helps him save other wookiees.

There's some details in the the film that point in this direction, for one until after we get to Kessel it is very clear that Han and Chewie are not honor bound, there's no life debt in place, as far as Han and Chewie are concerned Chewie can come and go as he pleases.

In fact, when they get to Kessel Chewie does exactly that. When Chewbacca sees another wookiee who is enslaved he doesn't think twice about abandoning the mission. He completely takes off, even at the risk of being permanently separated from the Falcon crew, to rescue that other wookiee.

Of course Chewbacca and his new(?) wookiee friend return and help with the mission, and it is never established exactly who this other wookiee is to Chewbacca, if they are old friends, or if the wookiee is a member of Chewie's immediately family even his child...it's not stated. It's open ended and we don't know. But what we do know that they share a warm embrace and touch eachother's forheads together in a way that communicates a very personal or symbolic gesture.

And we know that after the mine heist Han and Chewie grow closer, Han doesn't even know that Chewbacca is a really great co-pilot or his age until after the heist and it's certainly not a mistake in the film that the Han and Chewie dynamic we know and love comes into play after they leave Kessel.

So, there's nothing conclusive but it is a very reasonable conclusion that Chewie is related to the wookiee they find on Kashyyyk. If not, at the very least they're not complete strangers Chewie isn't exactly an unknown among his people but as we see in Revenge of the Sith he once servds directly at the side of the wookiee Chieftain.

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    Your conclusion seems to be that chewie owes Han a life debt, but the question is asking about whether the other Wookiee’s are part of his family. You have addressed that point in 2 of 7 of your paragraphs, although I’m unsure you’ve concluded with the right point.
    – Edlothiad
    Jun 4, 2018 at 11:23
  • Nowhere in the question was chewbacca’s life debt mentioned, where the relevance of it has come from only you can know, what the question does say (or ask rather) is whether or not the wookie are related, which they’re not, as it says in the official guide.
    – Edlothiad
    Jun 4, 2018 at 12:21
  • What my post is clearly about is that Chewie's family and the life debt are established canon, but it is not stated clearly in the film when Chewbacca pledged his Life Debt and it appears that Chewie is free to go as he pleases up until after he frees his fellow wookiee in Kessel, meaning there was no Life Debt pledged before then. It is therefore a reasonable conclusion that the wookiee is a family member. Jun 4, 2018 at 12:30
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    Can you clarify what the life debt has to do with if these Wookies are related to Chewie?
    – TheLethalCarrot
    Jun 4, 2018 at 12:57
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    "the events that led to Chewie owing Han a life debt clearly happen on screen in the movie" - I don't think this can be said for certain. It's possible a Solo sequel will have it shown explicitly.
    – Rogue Jedi
    Jun 4, 2018 at 13:08

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