The Devronian in the Details

The one thing the Star Wars universe has done better than any other franchise ever created is its attention to details. It isn’t so much mistake free details as it is detail to every little thing in a shot. If a character walks into a bar of aliens, with in a couple years, every character in that bar will have a backstory.  That Tauntaun head on the wall in Jabba’s palace? It has a story.  The tiniest, most minute detail has a story.  Of course something as classic as the Holochess table on-board the Falcon would receive such attention.

For those of you attempting to answer the question in the title, good luck.  If viewers go back and watch the original A New Hope and count the figures in front of Chewie and R2, the answer is 8, HOWEVER, that is not the correct canon answer.  Chris Morley, from Tippet Studios, explains why the correct answer is 10!  Here’s what he had to say in a recent interview:

“In Solo, the Millennium Falcon is new and clean, much different from the grimy, heavily modified version we see in the later years of its service. We decided that it would be a good idea to pitch bringing back the two Holochess characters that didn’t make it into the first film in 1977, as if in the Solo movie the Dejarik table was in full working order with all pieces intact. This led to capitalizing on a very serendipitous moment during the shoot where, in one shot, Chewie slams his paw down on the Holochess table in frustration. The force of the blow broke two buttons off the screen right side of the table set piece.”

When the holo-creatures were first designed, the studio designed ten creatures to be used on the holo-board.  Only eight of the pieces were chosen to make it to the screen. He continues:

“An unplanned event that we thought would be a great opportunity to tell the story of how the two new Holochess pieces were lost from that day forward. We added some sparks, glitched off the two creatures and showed a version to Lucasfilm VFX supervisor Rob Bredow who loved the idea and pitched it to Ron Howard who ran with it. It was a great feeling to be able to embrace the magic of what we call a happy accident.”

I love this about Star Wars.  How many other movies put this much thought into a simple prop that has nothing to do with anything.  A single line, a single object can inspire a story or plot line that can be continued in the next book/movie or be picked up on 40 years later.  After all, in that scene we heard about a wookiee’s temper.  Not until Solo do we finally get to see wookiees pile driving soldiers head first into the ground.
Actually here is one more fun fact.  Watch A New Hope.  Then watch The Force Awakens.  Notice anything?  The holochess game in TFA picks up right where the game in ANH was interrupted. Guess that shows exactly how much Chewie played the game.