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In The Empire Strikes Back, when Vader's Star Destroyer is pursuing the Millennium Falcon and it suddenly disappears, all of a sudden there is a bunch of bounty hunters lined up waiting to do Vader's bidding. Where did they all come from?

The pursuit is happening in the middle of nowhere and even if the Empire maintains some kind of bounty hunter alert system, it would take a while for the hunters to get the signal, not be preoccupied with some other hunt, plot a course (avoiding the nearby asteroid field), dock with the Star Destroyer and make their way to the bridge. By this time, if the Falcon has escaped they really would be 'on the other side of the galaxy by now'.

Alternatively, does the Empire (or Vader) retain a group of bounty hunters that hitch a ride on Star Destroyers waiting for some mission too difficult or dangerous to send their own troops on?

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    A group of bounty hunters is called a scum? – DampeS8N Feb 22 '13 at 13:40
  • @DampeS8N I was going to ask the same thing. Pod of whales, pride of lions, murder of crows... scum of bounty hunters? – Michael Itzoe Feb 22 '13 at 13:54
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    Also, it's never been conclusively decided as to how long in real time the events of ESB took. It may very well have taken days for the bounty hunters to assemble. – DVK-on-Ahch-To Feb 22 '13 at 14:40
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    Don't forget how giant a star destroyer jut is. It's like a huge flying city. Why can't it have a few bounty hunters on board? – vsz Feb 23 '13 at 14:15
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    I'm somewhat confused by the edit, the internet consensus for the collective noun of bounty hunters is 'scum', and I'm sure the context in clear enough. Then there is the addition of an entirely new tag that probably isn't going to get a lot of additional hits? – Bogdanovist Feb 24 '13 at 22:31
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I'd say that the general timeline of ESB is pretty unclear. Luke obviously receives some substantial training from Yoda, and it's unclear how long it took to travel to Bespin. It's possible that the cat and mouse game between the Empire and the Falcon went on for days, or even weeks, depending on how the Falcon was provisioned, I suppose.

My point here is that, given the training on Dagobah, I think that the asteriod sequence must have taken longer than just the day or so that you see on screen.

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    Time durations from the perspective of two different reference frames can't necessarily be same.. – I Love You 3000 Apr 23 '13 at 14:26
  • @SachinShekhar Are you saying that they really can't be the same or just that they don't necessarily have to be the same? – Dason Apr 24 '13 at 0:26
  • @Dason they don't necessarily have to be the same.. :) – I Love You 3000 Apr 24 '13 at 12:39
  • I sure hope the Falcon had some sandwiches aboard. That being said, they would've had to stay in the same location for that whole period of time (the Star Destroyer), since Han's plan revolved around them dumping their trash before activating Hyperdrive. – Zibbobz Mar 11 '14 at 17:03
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The most canon reference that I could find was the "Tales of the Bounty Hunters" book.

  • IG-88 was already in the Hoth system because he was following Darth Vader.
  • Dengar was there following Han Solo, because Han had made Dengar crash in a previous swoop race.
  • Why Bossk was there is not explained in the book.
  • Zuckuss and 4-LOM are not really explained either, but it does say that they needed a high paying job to pay for medical help. The Empire probably payed alot of money for Han, Luke, and Leia.
  • Boba Fett was in-system tracking Han Solo, as well, because of Jabba's bounty on Han of 1 million credits.
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    "...they needed a high paying job to pay for medical help." The bounty hunter's guild doesn't offer health care benefits? – RobertF Oct 16 '13 at 19:02
  • @RobertF: Are there any EU cites discussing any benefits from the BH guild, beyond a jobs list? – Codes with Hammer May 27 '14 at 15:01
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    @CodeswithHammer: Nope. But I bet you get a membership card, and the guild likely smooths over the legal repercussions of 'kick in the door, stun everyone, and drag that guy off-planet'. – Jeff May 27 '14 at 15:57

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