Chewbacca was almost forced to put on a pair of pants in A New Hope. Mark Hamill revealed the news in a recent tweet, which also featured some concept art depicting the world’s favorite Wookiee with a little bit of clothing on. We’ve learned quite a bit about Star Wars and Chewie over the years, thanks to some hardcore fans and Hamill’s social media accounts, but wearing pants isn’t a fact that has gained a whole lot of attention, at least in recent years.
Actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt tweeted some of Ralph McQuarrie’s original Chewbacca designs for A New Hope earlier this week, which Mark Hamill retweeted. “FUN FACT: Very early in the shooting of #SW studio execs expressed deep concern that Chewie didn’t wear any pants & suggested he wear a pair of lederhosen,” said Hamill in his tweet. “That they would focus on this amidst all the grotesque elements in the script made us laugh (& a bit worried).” The Luke Skywalker actor then added the hashtag, “TrueStory.” The studio apparently wasn’t ready for a nude Chewie.
The Star Wars universe would have been pretty weird if Chewbacca had pants on, though fans probably would have never said anything about it if it was all we ever knew. When looking back at Ralph McQuarrie’s initial designs, it’s clear to see that Chewie went through a lot of changes before they ended up with his final design. He originally looked like more of a classic alien with some fur before becoming the lovable ball of fuzz that he is today. Regardless, it appears that ditching the pants was a wise decision for Chewie’s overall look, even if the studio thought he looked offensive naked.
The Star Wars franchise isn’t exactly centered on Chewbacca, so it probably really would not have mattered what he was wearing, or even what he looked like. With that being said, the character is a fan-favorite, and has been since A New Hope opened up in theaters over 40 years ago. Seeing the young version of Chewie in Solo was a franchise highlight, as was seeing his dramatic turn in The Force Awakens.
Chewbacca’s naked look with a bandolier is iconic and he’s even able to walk around Disneyland and Disney World like that, so there’s really no problem with the nudity after all of this time. Chewbacca will remain to be one of the brightest stars in the galaxy, and that’s all thanks to the creative minds of Ralph McQuarrie and George Lucas. Hopefully we’ll end up seeing some more of him in the near future, perhaps on Disney+ with his own series. While that has not been officially confirmed by Lucasfilm, Star Wars fans would more than likely love to see it happen, with or without pants. You can see the big Star Wars reveal above, thanks to Mark Hamill’s official Twitter account.