If you’re a Star Wars fan and you’re not already following Joonas Suotamo on Instagram, I suggest you do so. Not only has Suotamo become a big part of Star Wars, the dude is pretty darn funny. And if you’re unfamiliar with the Finnish actor, well, shame on you. The towering 6’11” Suotamo first began double work for Peter Mayhew as the mighty Chewbacca in The Force Awakens. He’s since taken over the role, filling some big, furry shoes superbly. The Chewbacca actor recently took to Instagram to talk about the difficulties of portraying the hulking Wookiee.
Playing one of the most easily recognizable characters in film isn’t always easy. The suit is heavy and extraordinarily warm, two factors that make bringing Chewie to life challenging at times. The Chewbacca actor posted to Instagram this insight into filming his scenes just yesterday:
Chewbacca Actor Brings Wookiee to Life
This isn’t the first time the Chewbacca actor has discussed just what it takes play Han Solo’s long-time companion. In the Blu-ray extras for Solo: A Star Wars Story, he talked at length about the grueling mud pit scene in film. Despite the arduous task playing Chewbacca can be, Suotamo nonetheless does it with pride and aplomb. As he admits, for him, “[p]laying Chewbacca is a dream”.
The Chewbacca actor has now portrayed the Wookiee through four films, adding The Last Jedi and the upcoming Star Wars: Episode IX to the list. He doesn’t just bring an iconic Star Wars character to the set; he also brings a sharp wit and hilarious sense of humor. This is someone who refers to his child as “Babybacca” and posted this gem at Thanksgiving, after all:
Suotamo was really just starting to come into his own as Chewbacca. It’s therefore quite a shame to know that Episode IX will be the last “saga” Star Wars film ever. Here’s hoping that the rumors of a Lando/Qi’ra spinoff series on Disney+ are true. It would be nice for the Chewbacca actor to have another chance to flex his might… and his funny bone.
Suotamo will appear at Star Wars Celebration in Chicago this April, and as Chewbacca in Star Wars: Episode IX this December.