I know J.J. Abrams is already hammering out the script and everything, and so this is an exercise in futility, but the idea struck me last night and I'm in love with it.
Basically, Tom Hardy is Han Solo's son. It's so perfect. I've been a huge fan of Hardy's for years. As a bonus, he seems to be a go-to guy for franchises already (Batman, Mad Max). And a lot of other people are already acknowledging how awesome he is based on his recent work, starting with the breakthrough Inception performance.
But seriously, do I need to sell you anymore on the concept? Here goes...
The title of this Episode VII is The Rogue's Son. We begin our adventure with a surly Kane Skywalker (that's our boy Hardy) living at the farthest reaches of the galaxy. It's thirty years after the defeat of the Empire, but the most famous names are Solo and Organa, the power couple who ended up becoming the face of the New Republic. Even though he technically did most of the work, Luke Skywalker's legacy has been lost, and so using that surname helps Kane hide better.
Wanting nothing to do with his parents after a rough childhood where he felt like he meant nothing to them while the New Republic meant everything, Kane has ended up a lot like his father. He has no idea, of course. The biggest irony is that he even has his own hand-me-down patchwork ship he's worked on for years, making it his own, so that it's far more impressive than it has any right to be. He drag-races it every chance he gets. But he's not happy.
Word has reached Kane that the remnant of the Imperial fleet is staging a comeback. In his desperation he actually thinks it's a good thing to side with these guys. As a ode to the classic Timothy Zahn novels, we've even got Thrawn in the mix, only instead of being the leading figure he's another outcast like Kane, just looking for a way in. Kane and Thrawn team up to offer their services to the cause.
Standing in Kane's way. An old hermit he knows as Bail. Except Bail is really Luke Skywalker, Kane's uncle and still the last of the Jedi. He's never had success in rebuilding the Order. This also has a way of tying in with all those books about Han and Leia's kids who were among the first of the new Jedi. Because Kane knows he does have access to the Force. But he has no idea how to control it.
In fact, he has a lightsaber, and when Luke reveals his true identity they engage in a wild duel. Until Luke convinces Kane to give his father one last shot.
And so they head home. The reunion is a painful one. Kane and Han engage in another fight. (Come on. You will never grow tired of Harrison Ford in a fight.) But they agree to give it another shot. It's only then that Kane remembers the impending threat of the Imperial fleet.
The thing is, in the rebuilding process the New Republic kind of overlooked matters of security. There hadn't been a real threat in three decades. So it's entirely unprepared to face this fleet. Kane realizes he and his ship are the New Republic's best shot.
And perhaps to set up room for a sequel, Thrawn betrays Kane at the end in order to give the Imperial fleet something to use next time.
To my mind, this is a fantastic idea. Tom Hardy in movies like Warrior and Bronson portrays all the necessary elements, to an almost scary degree, to sell this role. Warrior is a movie about a father and son(s) who find reconciliation difficult. Bronson is about a crass and unrefined brute who can sometimes fake his way into a more civilized mode (that's where Kane's mother Leia would show her influence!).
And it's Tom Hardy. And Harrison Ford. I know they tried it with Shia LaBeouf in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, but, and no offense to Shia LaBeouf, Shia LaBeouf is no Tom Hardy. Hardy and Ford are a match made in heaven. And they're meant to be father and son, in Star Wars.
This idea has zero chance of happening, and I'm sure I will be more than happy with whatever Abrams cooks up...but I would love to see this happen...