Later this year, the current Star Wars canon is going to lift the lid on how Leia Organa and Han Solo became the Organa-Solos, in The Princess and the Scoundrel, a new novel exploring how the duo tied the knot, and maybe paid a visit to a certain spaceship hotel along the way. But what do we already know about Han and Leia’s marriage — and how did it go down in the EU? Let us explain…
How Leia and Han Got Married in Current Star Wars Canon…
By and large, the events of Han and Leia’s matrimony have largely been left untouched in the post-reboot Star Wars continuity — hence why we’re now getting a book about it. Before The Princess and the Scoundrel was announced, all we knew was that Han and Leia married on Endor, shortly after the destruction of the second Death Star in 4 ABY (that’s the old Star Wars chronological shorthand for “After the Battle of Yavin” in A New Hope, for those unfamiliar).
In the 2016 novel Aftermath: Life Debt, Leia describes the ceremony in the Ewok village as a small affair — not exactly private, but not exactly public either, with only a few close friends attending. From there, we’ll learn more details in The Princess and the Scoundrel, which apparently includes the detail that the newlyweds will flee the hectic fallout of the Rebel Alliance’s dissolution and transformation into the New Republic by taking their honeymoon on the Halcyon — the starship cruiser hotel that has been showing up all over Star Wars fiction recently because, well, it’s the setting of Walt Disney World’s upcoming and incredibly pricey Star Wars LARP-meets-hotel, Galactic Starcruiser.
Little else is really known about the immediate moments of Han and Leia’s married life though, except one minor detail: as a wedding gift for Leia, Han reconfigured the Millennium Falcon’s crew quarters to include a small galley that the couple could actually cook meals in, rather than be left to eat rations. The kitchen was added to diagrams of the ship in the then-updated The Force Awakens: Incredible Cross-Sections tie-in book in 2015, in part to explain changes to the layout of the Falcon set as it appeared in the movie.
… And No, Ben Solo (Probably) Didn’t Get Conceived at Disney World
Naturally, because Star Wars nerds are very interested in all the weird details about the sex lives of the rich and famous in the galaxy far, far away, the revelation that Han and Leia probably booked the wedding suite on the Halcyon has lead to fans asking if the Galactic Starcruiser hotel will offer premium guests the chance to spend two nights in the room where Star Wars’ most iconic couple… put on some smooth Jizz.
Unfortunately, because we’re also Star Wars nerds, we have burst your bubble — at least for now. Ben was born on the planet Chandrila in 5ABY, on, fortuitously, the day the New Republic and the Imperial Remnant signed the Galactic Concordance peace treaty into law, bringing about the end of the Galactic Civil War — we don’t know specifically when in the year that is, but you could make a reasonable presumption that he was conceived some time the year prior. However, just when and where is currently unknown — in Life Debt, Han reflects that Ben was likely conceived on Endor, while in the Leia-focused novel Bloodline released in the same year, Leia believes that romantic dalliances aboard the Falcon are how she became pregnant.
This could change, of course. We’ll find out when The Princess and the Scoundrel releases, and it’s hard to say if the two accounts we currently have from Han and Leia are just the couple mis-remembering, or if they were, in the grand scheme of things, minor editorial mistakes. But anyway that’s frankly quite enough discussion about just when Han and Leia conceived their child, even for us.
Han and Leia’s First (!) Wedding Attempt in the Expanded Universe Was Incredibly Weird
Now that we’ve talked about conception enough, let’s actually get weird! The story of Han and Leia’s marriage in the now-non-canonical Star Wars Expanded Universe is, like so many beloved things about the Expanded Universe, incredibly convoluted. Not only because they tried to get married twice, but because the first attempt ended so poorly that it would take another three years for Leia and Han to try and tie the knot again.
The timeline of the EU’s post-Return of the Jedi period is much more drawn out than the one we now have in current continuity — the battle between the newly formed New Republic and the Galactic Empire would not be over for several more years compared to this equivalent point in canon today — but nevertheless, Organa-Solo matrimony was on the cards in 5ABY. Instead of a private ceremony, Han and Leia planned on getting married in a larger event on Yavin IV, in the remnants of the great hall of the Massassi temple where the Rebel Alliance celebrated the destruction of the Death Star. Emphasis on planned. The final novel in the Jedi Prince series, Prophets of the Dark Side (first released in 1993) concludes with Leia walking down the aisle on Yavin IV, being given a vision of the future by the Force of her first children with Han, the twins Jacen and Jaina Solo. However, we never see the conclusion of that wedding — the Jedi Prince series was cancelled before the next book, which would’ve shown the wedding being attacked by Imperial forces. And of course, we know there’s another wedding in the EU, which we’ll get to soon enough. An accompanying tie-in article series on the official Star Wars website eventually clarified that this wedding was actually interrupted, and never went through. How?
Sit down: it was attacked by the brainwashed son of Palpatine. Named Triclops. Because he has a third eye in the back of his head. Oh, and did we mention that, kind of maybe sort of like Rey’s own father in The Rise of Skywalker, Triclops was a clone engineered through Palpatine’s manipulation of the Force? We’re not even going to get into one of the major protagonists in the Jedi Prince books being Triclops’ son… Ken! Anyway, we’re getting far off the beaten track: suffice to say, Han and Leia’s wedding here apparently never happened, and so it’s time to get weirder.
How Leia and Han Got Engaged in the Expanded Universe Was Even Weirder
To talk about the wedding of Han and Leia in the Star Wars EU, you have to — simply have to — talk about the run-up to it, because it involved one of the wildest, most weirdly charming, most utterly bananas novels in the entire history of the old Star Wars book series: Dave Wolverton’s 1994 novel The Courtship of Princess Leia.
Longtime Gizmodo fans will know just how spectacularly bizarre this novel is, but for those unfamiliar, The Courtship of Princess Leia is not actually really about Han and Leia’s engagement at first, but her planned wedding to… Prince Isolder, a powerful member of the royal family presiding over the Hapes Cluster — a vital star system the New Republic is trying to get on its side, so they’re more than happen to just ship Leia off to a political marriage. Naturally, Han loses his shit, wins a planet in a depression-induced card game, kidnaps Leia and takes her to the planet, there’s a whole big fight with the spectacularly named Imperial Warlord Zsinj. Luke Skywalker and the aforementioned Prince Isolder team up to for the silliest buddy cop side-plot conceivable, C-3PO sings a song about Han’s sexual prowess (“Solo! He’s every princess’ dream…”).
Oh, did we mention the planet Han wins is Dathomir? That Dathomir, which debuted here? The one with the Force Witches that have now become a very important part of Star Wars canon thanks to Darth Maul and Asajj Ventress’ backstory in The Clone Wars? And in an attempt to woo Leia back from Isolder he offers to make it a new home for Alderaanian refugees? The Courtship of Princess Leia truly must be read to be believed, and for as incredibly silly as it is, it was a surprisingly influential book in the old EU — even beyond the fact that it, of course, culminates in Han and Leia getting married. Again.
Their Actual Wedding Was Thankfully Much Less Weird
Good news! We’re through the bonkers bits of all this, at last. Han and Leia finally actually married — no brainwashed Force clones allowed at the ceremony this time — in 8ABY in the climax of The Courtship of Princess Leia. A lavish affair at the Alderaanian consulate on Coruscant, the wedding was officiated by Mon Mothma, with Luke as the pair’s best man, and attended by thousands of New Republic officials — and broadcast to billions more across the Holonet, footage of which would play on the news network for weeks after as a sign of peace and love in the galaxy’s turblent status quo.
What happened to Prince Isolder and the Hapes Cluster, you ask? Well, the Prince got less miffed that Leia married another man by instead offering his hand to the Dathomirian witch Teneniel Djo, who had earlier kidnapped by Isolder and Luke while they were looking for Han and Leia on the planet. Lotta kidnapping in Courtship! Anyway, the Hapes Consortium formally opened its borders to the New Republic, so in the end, everyone got what they actually wanted… and lived happily ever after. Well, for the most part.