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Funny / The Empire Strikes Back

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  • Every single time Han or Chewie try to fix the Falcon:
    • "All right, that's it. Try it. [something catches fire] Oh, turn IT OFF TURN IT OFF!!!" -Chewie proceeds to freak out as he tries to do just this-
    • "No, no, NO! This one goes here, that one goes there, right?!
    • Near the beginning, Chewie is doing some welding. He has to hold the goggles to his face because the strap is too small.
      Han: Hey, Chewie.
      Chewie: [gestures wildly and says something in Shyriwook that's clearly along the lines of "where the hell have you been?! I'm up here doing all the work!"]note 
      Han: Alright, don't lose your temper! I'll come right back, and give you a hand!
  • This exchange:
    Leia: [storming out of the command center after Han] HAN!
    Han: Yes, your Highnessness?
  • This dialogue, when Leia tries to convince Han not to leave:
    Han: You want me to stay because of the way you feel about me.
    Leia: Yes. You're a great help to us. You're a natural leader.
    Han: No! That's not it! Come on! Ahhhhh, come on!
    Leia: You're imagining things!
    Han: Am I? Then why are you following me? Afraid I was going to leave without giving you a goodbye kiss?
    Leia: I'd just as soon kiss a Wookiee!
    Han: I can arrange that. [walking away] You could USE A GOOD KISS!!
    [Leia sees someone listening to their conversation... who turns around and hurriedly makes himself scarce]
    • Just in general, watch how the other Rebels react to Han Solo, one of the heroes of the Battle of Yavin, having a UST-ridden spat with Princess Leia, one of the Rebellion's best known leaders. Or rather, how they entirely don't react to it, mostly treating the two as a minor obstacle as they make their way through the hallways. These two have been going at it like this for so long it's gone well past routine and straight to kind of boring to everyone else in the cramped base.
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    • Later:
      C-3PO: Excuse me sir. Might I have a word with you, please?
      Han: What do you want?
      C-3PO: Well, it's Princess Leia, sir, she's been trying to get you on the communicator.
      Han: I turned it off, I don't wanna talk to her!
      C-3PO: Oh, well, Princess Leia is wondering about Master Luke. He hasn't come back yet. She doesn't know where he is.
      Han: I don't know where he is!
      C-3PO: Nobody knows where he is.
      Han: What do you mean nobody knows?
      C-3PO: Well, you see–
      Han: Deck officer? Deck officer!?
      C-3PO: Excuse me sir, but–
      [Han covers C-3PO's mouth as he talks to the officer]
      Officer: Yes, sir?
      Han: Do you know where Commander Skywalker is?
      Officer: I haven't seen him. It's possible he came in through the south entrance.
      Han: It's possible? Why don't you go find out? It's getting dark out there.
      Officer: Yes sir.
      [Han removes his hand from 3PO]
      C-3PO: Excuse me, sir, but might I inquire to what's going on?
      Han: [in deep thought] Why not? [walks away]
      C-3PO: Impossible man. Come along R2, let's go find Princess Leia. Between ourselves, I think Master Luke is in considerable danger.
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  • This is sort of a blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment, but this conversation between Threepio and Artoo on Hoth is hysterical:
    Threepio: Don't try to blame me. I didn't tell you to turn on the thermal heater, I merely commented that it was freezing in the princess' chambers.
    Artoo: [beep beep beep]
    Threepio: But it's supposed to be freezing! How we're going to dry out all her clothes, I really don't know,
    Artoo: [bleeps sourly]
    Threepio: Oh, switch off!
    Artoo: [bleeps sourly again]
  • This scene after Luke is saved from freezing to death:
    Han: Well, Your Worship, looks like you managed to keep me around a little while longer.
    Leia: I had nothing to do with it. General Rieekan thinks it's too dangerous for any ships to leave the system until we've activated the energy field.
    Han: That's a good story. I just think you can't bear to let a gorgeous guy like me out of your sight.
    Leia: I don't where you get your delusions, laser brain.
    [Chewbacca laughs]
    Han: Laugh it up, fuzzball! But you didn't see us alone in the south passage; she expressed her true feelings for me.
    Leia: My...? Why you stuck-up... half-witted... scruffy-looking... nerf herder!
    Han: Who's "scruffy-looking"?
    • Luke's face right as Han says "I just think you can't bear to let a gorgeous guy like me out of your sight." His eyeroll and exasperated expression plainly say "Oh, not THIS again..."
  • Bickering Han & Leia... PERIOD!
  • Luke's reaction to Leia's kissnote , and Han's reaction to both.
  • One that probably wasn't meant to be funny but ended up that way: Near the beginning, Vader turns around and raises his voice slightly to address General Veers. The camera then pans ever-so-slightly to the side to reveal Veers standing literally 6 inches away from Vader.
  • During the evacuation from Hoth, C-3PO is shuffling after Han and Leia as quickly as he can, saying "wait for me!" only to have a door shut in his face.
    C-3PO: [as the door shuts] How typical. [the door opens up again and Han yanks him through]
  • More of the Black Comedy variety, but the rapid rate of Vader's removal of incompetent officers basically becomes a Running Gag.
    • Piett's on-the-spot promotion happens before Ozzel's body hits the floor. Makes you wonder if Vader intentionally gave out the promotion before finishing off Ozzel just to rub salt on the fatal wound.
    • The look on Captain/Admiral Piett's face during this is hilarious, trying to keep track of his conversation with Vader, while ignoring the man being slowly Force-choked to death next to him. His surprised eye-twitch and his nod offscreen at the end are equally amusing, since he's basically giving the signal, "What he said. And, uh, can you please send someone to remove this body?" And when Vader called for Piett, Ozzel was polite enough to take a step back even while dying.
    • When Ozzel's body hits the floor, a random officer in the back of the room turns around and looks up at the viewscreen nervously. You only see his face for about a second, but it's hysterical.
    • Captain Needa and his bridge crew doing a trademarked Star Trek Screen Shake as they collide with another Star Destroyer. He orders evasive action, then they collide and everyone throws themselves onto the nearest wall. Amusingly, one crewman walking off-screen seems completely unaffected by it.
    • When Captain Needa hops into a transport and flies to the Executor to inform Vader that the Millenium Falcon has escaped, the next shot is of him doubled-over as he dies, while Vader steps around his corpse.
      Darth Vader: Apology accepted, Captain Needa.
      • Immediately after this, Vader nonchalantly signals to a couple of officers who are standing right there. They just as nonchalantly dart forward and haul the body out of there, like this happens all the time for them. Which, given that this is Darth Vader, it probably does.
      • After killing Needa, Vader turns around and the Imperial crewmen who were watching immediately get back to work.
    • After the Falcon escapes from Bespin, Vader stares blankly out of the window. The crewmen watch nervously as he approaches them... and walks on by. Apparently Vader was too depressed to do a You Have Failed Me.
      • Once again Piett's reaction is priceless. You can clearly read in his eyes that he's thinking "I am so about to die, this is it, I'm dead, I'm dead, I'm ... not dead?" as Vader walks straight past and off the bridge.
      • Additionally, as Vader walks off the bridge, he walks past an officer who apparently has not been paying any attention to anything that has been going on, and looks around the bridge slightly confused when Vader walks past.
    • Adding onto this is when Vader does the holoconference with his captains. We see an asteroid obliterate the conning tower of a Star Destroyer and then in the holoconference, one of the captains fades as he tries to shield himself.
  • Han tries to start the Falcon's engines, which then promptly die, so he hits the bulkhead with his fist and they come back on again.note 
  • Off-screen, Han getting hit on the head with a toolbox while trying to fix the hyperdrive. Even funnier when you know this was an on-set accident, and they left it in because it was so funny.
  • Possibly Han's best line ever:
    C-3PO: Sir, it's quite possible this asteroid is not entirely stable.
    Han: "Not entirely stable?" Well, I'm glad you're here to tell us these things! Chewie, take the Professor in the back and plug him into the hyperdrive!
    C-3PO: Sometimes I just don't understand human behaviour. After all, I'm only doing my job...
    • Later, as Han fixes the ship:
      C-3PO: Sir, if I may venture an opinion?
      Han: I'm not interested in your opinion, 3PO.
  • Upon approaching Dagobah, Luke assures R2 that it is perfectly safe for droids. Moments later, they have very serious difficulty while trying to land, and R2's screaming repeatedly as if saying "Dammit! I thought you said it was safe!"
  • R2 seems to have disappeared after falling into the water around Luke's X-Wing... but then we see one of the blue panels on his head extended into a periscope, and R2 dances around under the water, with only the periscope visible while Luke smiles with relief. Then Luke informs R2-D2 that he's going the wrong way.
  • R2 getting eaten by some swamp creature, which promptly spits him back out, and his shrill yowl as he sails through the air and lands in the brush.
    • Though sadly altered in the Special Edition, there's Luke's quip to R2 as he helps the filthy droid back up.
      Luke: You're lucky you don't taste very good. / You were lucky to get out of there.note 
  • Yoda just generally trolling the crap out of Luke when they first meet (even more Hilarious in Hindsight once you've seen the full set of films [and The Clone Wars] and know who Yoda actually is, and the fact that R2-D2 knows it too).
    Luke: Listen, friend, we didn't mean to land in that puddle, and if we could get our ship out, we would, but we can't, so why don't you just–
    Yoda: Aww! Cannot get your ship out!
    • R2 and Yoda fighting over a flashlight. After the events of The Clone Wars, R2's probably been dying to troll Yoda.
  • Yoda rummaging through Luke's supplies and beating on R2 with his stick when the droid interferes.
    [Yoda gets Luke's little flashlight]
    Luke: Hey, give me that!
    Yoda: Mine! Or I will help you not!
    Luke: I don't want your help, I want my lamp back. I'm gonna need it to get out of this slimy mudhole.
    Yoda: Mudhole? Slimy? My home this is!
    • It gets even funnier after Luke orders R2 to back down. R2's arm withdraws into a panel, which Yoda proceeds to cheerfully tap shut with his stick.
    • This scene is given even funnier context by the prequel trilogy and The Clone Wars: R2 knows exactly who Yoda is and what he's pulling.
      • That whole bit with Yoda being goofy is adorably hilarious. Yoda wasn't revealed to Luke and us as the sage Jedi Master, yet, so we get to see this tiny shriveled, Ugly Cute green troll/goblin/gnome guy with a voice like Grover the Monster basically trash Luke's stuff by rooting through supplies, eating Luke's food, stealing a little lamp thingy...
  • When Luke is invited by this odd small green alien to his house, Luke told R2 to stay at their camp (near their starship). Two scenes later, R2 quietly follows them to the house to take a peek from one the house's windows and beeps curiously. Fridge Brilliance after you've watched the Prequel Trilogy, as R2 knows that odd small green alien is Yoda, the Jedi Master they're looking for. So R2, after witnessing how Yoda pretending to be a silly little alien, is probably wondering what the old Jedi Master was trying to do to troll Luke. Later, in several shots during the scene after Yoda revealed his identity, R2 can still be seen peeking from outside the window.
  • Yoda and Luke having very different tastes in food. When Yoda first tries out one of Luke's ration sticks, he immediately hacks it back up, before quipping to Luke, "How you get so big eating food of this kind?!" Luke gets a similar experience when he tries some of Yoda's stew. He then adds some seasoning to make it taste a little better.
  • While he's on Dagobah, Yoda takes Luke to his house. After an argument about how Luke can't be a Jedi because he's too old, he starts speaking to Obi-Wan. Luke is able to hear the conversation too, and right as he's yelling at Ben telling him to tell Yoda that he can be a Jedi Luke hits his head on the low ceiling.
    • And apparently, Mark Hamill had to do that exact take 14 times — he had quite a lump on his head after they were done!
  • Threepio talks to the Millennium Falcon's computer to find out what's wrong with it, and advises Han of the problem, which leads Han to proclaim that he Knew It All Along.
    Threepio: Sir, I don't know where your ship learned to communicate, but it has the most peculiar dialect. I believe, sir, it says that the power coupling on the negative axis has been polarised. I'm afraid you'll have to replace it.
    Han: Well of course I'll have to replace it. [passing Chewie some cables] Here. And Chewie... [quietly, sheepishly] ...I think we better replace the negative power coupling.
  • While briefing the Bounty Hunters on the pursuit of the Millennium Falcon, he tells them that they're "free to use any methods necessary", but that he wants the crew alive, then specifically turns to Boba Fett and calls him out:
    Vader: No disintegrations!
    Boba Fett: As you wish.
    • And thanks to a bit of Memetic Mutation, this segues into the following:
      That day, Vader was amazed to discover that when he was saying "As you wish", what he meant was, "I love you." And even more amazing was the day he realized he truly loved him back.
    • The best part is Fett's response: he just sorta looks down dejectedly, as if he were silently complaining.
    • From the same scene, Admiral Piett disapproves of the bounty hunters and angrily remarks to a technician at a terminal "Bounty hunters, we don't need their scum here!" The funny part comes from the technician flatly going "Yes, sir", like he really doesn't care and would like to get on with his work, but has to humor his boss.
    • And then Piett hears a growl above him and looks up to see Bossk (the reptilian bounty hunter) glowering down at him. His expression is quite the picture.
  • Luke is practicing some kind of levitation exercise, lifting rocks with the Force while doing a handstand with Yoda balanced on top of his foot. R2 notices the X-Wing is sinking deeper into the swamp, which prompts him to whistle at Luke, which distracts him ... and he drops the rock and falls to the ground, bringing Yoda with him. Yoda panicking and yelling "ConcenTRATE!!" as Luke topples over is priceless.
    • Yoda apparently learns his lesson. The second time he has Luke do this exercise, he's standing off to the side and far out of range of falling objects.
    • During this second exercise, Luke manages to lift not just rocks, but a few storage crates and a very surprised R2-D2. It's all going well until Luke senses that Han and Leia are in danger and drops everything. R2's beeping scream and Yoda's head-shaking disappointment are the perfect punchline to an otherwise dramatic and visually charming moment.
  • When Han and Leia are making out in the passageway onboard the Falcon, after while 3PO ruins the moment by excitedly walking in on them and giving them some irrelevant news about the hyperdrive. Han's reaction to being cockblocked by a droid is hilarious.
  • When they find out that the cave they landed in isn't a cave.
    Han: All right, Chewie, let's get out of here!
    Leia: The Empire is still out there, I don't think it's wise–
    Han: No time to discuss this in a committee!
    [3PO comes after them, then stumbles back down the hallway he came out of with a girly scream]
  • After they clear the asteroid field, there's a Hope Spot where Han's about to engage the hyperdrive, only for it to putter out and fail.
    Han: [quietly] It's not fair.
  • "Never Tell Me the Odds!!"
    C-3PO: But sir! The odds of surviving a direct assault on an Imperial Star Destroyer are–
    Leia: SHUT UP!
  • When 3PO finds another droid like him in Cloud City, he ends up getting dissed.
    C-3PO: Nice to see a familiar face.
    E-3PO: E chu ta!
    C-3PO: How rude!
  • Han and Leia are invited for dinner... by Darth Vader. Han immediately shoots him, to no avail.
  • When Vader is examining the carbon-freezing chamber, Vader snarks that it's crude, but it'll do the trick for getting Luke to the Emperor. Lando tells him that trying to carbon-freeze Luke could kill him since it's not exactly meant for use on humans. Vader pretty much just shrugs and agrees... and that they'll test it on Han. You'd think Vader was testing how much baking soda to use for a homemade volcano. Furthermore, The Clone Wars showed that Anakin previously carbon-froze his entire team, so Vader even knows a human can survive carbon-freezing, it's just Lando's "crude" chamber that worries him.
  • In an otherwise dark, foreboding scene, we have Leia's amused comment after Han punches Lando:
    Leia: You certainly have a way with people.
  • The famous exchange before Han is frozen in carbonite and Leia says "I love you!" and Han responds "I know." It's a Tear Jerker now, but back in 1980 when it was released it got a huge laugh from the audience. It's one of the reasons Lucas didn't like the Throw It In! dialogue devised by Harrison Ford and director Irvin Kershner in place of the original lines, because it broke the serious mood of the scene. When it got a positive response at a preview screening, Lucas decided to leave it in.
  • After Lando ratted out on Han and tried to gain Leia's trust by opening Chewie's handcuffs, Chewie decides to play Stranglo Calrissian.
    Lando: I had no choice!!
    C-3PO: What are you doing? Trust him! Trust him!
    Leia: Oh we understand, don't we Chewie. "He had no choice."
    • Additionally, as Lando is removing Chewie's handcuffs, Leia's saying, "Do you think that after what you did to Han, that we're going to trust–" And right as she finishes with "–you?", Chewie's hands are free, and he decides to, ahem, voice that opinion also. A bit more strenuously. It's even funnier when you realize why Chewie did it as soon as his hands are untied: He's been waiting for that moment. Previously, Lando was always guarded by his security guards, or surrounded by Imperials. Then, when Lando is finally alone, it becomes a good chance for Chewie to immediately express a physical version of Et Tu, Brute?/What the Hell, Hero?.
    Lando: I'm just... trying to help...
    Leia: [smugly] We don't need any of your help.
    • Also, as Lando tries to get out his explanation through chokes and wheezes, C-3PO is able to understand the word "Han". Who woulda guessed that one of Threepio's fluencies was "Strangled Basic"?
      Lando: Haaaaaaan...
      Leia: [exasperated] What?
      C-3PO: It sounds like "Han".
      Lando: [choking] There's still a chance to save the East... Platform!
      Leia: Chewie!
      Chewie: [drops Lando like a sack of rubbish as he and Leia run to said platform]
      Lando: [gasping for breath] Gasp... Choke... Wheeeze....
    • To top it all off, dear sweet old Threepio waves back at Lando from Chewbaca's back, apologizing for his short-tempered friend.
  • The situation is very serious, but Luke and Vader's duel in Bespin is darkly funny in spots if you think about it. Luke keeps thwarting Vader and causing him to lose his cool: when he sprays carbonite mist in his face, when he pushes him off a platform, and when he nicks him in the arm. Vader actually cries out in pain and surprise during those last two (in the former instance, the scream was altered for the Special Edition so that Vader sounds even more shocked that Luke got the drop on him), and one gets the feeling he lops off Luke's hand at least partly because he's getting fed up of the boy refusing to surrender and causing him to act so undignified.
    • As soon as Luke has bragged that he's full of surprises, his lightsaber ends up slipping out of his grasp while he's twirling it against that of Vader. Whoops.
    • After Vader has activated the freezing chambernote , he muses in a disappointed tone that maybe the Emperor overestimated Luke. He then hears a metallic crash and looks up, finding Luke climbing up the tubing. He reacts with an approving "impressive", sounding like a parent who sees his kid has just learned to climb a rope.note 
      Vader: Most impressive!
  • When Chewie is attempting to repair C-3PO and turns him back on at first, C-3P0's memory restarts from just before he was attacked, leading him to remember he was blown apart:
    C-3PO: Stormtroopers... here? We're in danger! I must tell the others. Oh no, I've been shot!
    • Shortly afterwards, when Chewie tries to put 3P0 back together, 3P0 rather stridently points out something Chewie has gotten wrong...
      C-3P0: Oh my, what have you done?! I'm backwards, you flea-bitten furball! Only an overgrown mophead like you would be stupid enough-! [Chewie prompty turns him off]
  • C-3PO's objection to R2's explanation about being told something by the city's central computer.
  • After escaping Cloud City with Falcon, Leia insists to go back to save Luke, prompting Lando to protest that the Imperials would catch up to them. This causes Chewie to angrily roars at him, causing him to immediately back down saying "Alright! Alright!" in a tone that screams, "Alright, geez, I get it! I betrayed Han, so now I will do whatever you guys told me to do."
  • After Lando takes command of the Falcon, the look on Chewie and Leia's faces when the hyperdrive doesn't work for the third time in the film is just priceless. They just look at each other with incredulous resignation. And then Lando and Chewie start going crazy while Leia slumps dejectedly into a chair.
    Lando: They told me they fixed it! I trusted them! It's not my fault!
    [Chewie then pushes Lando out of his way to fix it, again]
  • Every single time the Millennium Falcon becomes a spaceship version of The Alleged Car, really.
  • After the failed hyperdrive escape, the Falcon manages to disappear from the Imperial's tracking scopes. Immediately afterwards another bridge mook tells Needa that Vader wants an update.
  • R2-D2 turning into a fire extinguisher.note 
  • "Artoo, come back here at once! [standing in doorway holding up his one severed lower-leg] You haven't finished with me yet! You don't know how to fix the hyperdrive! Chewbacca can do it! I'm standing here in pieces and you're having delusions of grandeur!" (Of course, seconds later, Artoo does fix the hyperdrive, and he slides bodily into a maintenance pit for his trouble.)
    C-3PO: You DID it!
    • Plus, remember who's at the bottom of that maintenance pit: Chewbacca.
    • Some Fridge Brilliance: R2-D2 is an astromech droid; fixing spaceships is what he does. He's been away from the Falcon the whole movie, but once he's on board, he fixes it right up.
  • It's a quick moment, but after the Falcon finally gets away from Vader and company at the end, Vader turns away from the window, then does a brief double-take back to the window as if to say, "What? Seriously?"
    • Then he exasperatedly walks away as his officers nervously look on, wary of their tracheas being imminently crushed. This movie could be renamed "Skywalkers Have To Deal With Everyone's Crap".
  • A bit of Black Comedy: when Han is being tortured, Lando and Boba Fett are standing outside listening, looking extremely awkward, as if they're both trying to find something to talk about. At one point they do a slow turn toward each other, and you almost expect Fett to say, "...what?"
  • A small moment, but when Han is searching for a place for the Falcon to hide while it gets repairs, he identifies it by the name of the man who can help them, rather than the actual system, prompting Leia to say, with extreme skepticism, "The Lando system?" Not only is her self-deprecating tone perfect for how she'll eventually judge the man himself, you can totally imagine that Lando would love being confused with a whole star system, or having one named after him.
  • Another small moment: during the scene when Leia, Chewie, and Threepio are being taken away by Vader and his men, and Luke appears leading to a firefight in the halls of Cloud City, Leia identifies him by name as she tries to warn him of the trap. The result? While she's struggling to escape and blasters are going off around them, Lando is narrowing his eyes and peering down the corridors to try and catch a glimpse of Luke. You can totally tell from his face that after all the trouble Vader has gone to to capture Luke, and how he's been drawn into it and forced to betray his friend, Lando is thinking, "Who is this Skywalker, what makes him so damned important?!" Becomes even funnier when you get to Return of the Jedi and see how well they work together to rescue Han from Jabba.
    Leia: Vader wants us all dead!
    Lando: He doesn't want you at all! He's after somebody called, um, Skywalker!
    Han: Luke?
  • During the Battle of Hoth, Wedge and Jansen manage to take down one of the massive Imperial Walkers using a tow cable. Wedge's outburst when it works can be pretty amusing, given his reputation from Return of the Jedi as an ice-blooded Danger Deadpan par excellence.
    Wedge: Whaa! That got him!
  • Deleted scenes. The crew are fleeing from the invading Snowtroopers in Echo Base and C-3PO stops for a second and removes a wampa warning sign in a trollish manner. Moments later a Snowtrooper opens the door and a wampa's hand pulls one of his comrades inside. The trooper promptly closes the door. Then Darth Vader walks up, apparently hears the screams inside, and nonchalantly moves on down the corridor.
  • From the behind-the-scenes footage, it appears that Peter Mayhew spoke English in character as Chewbacca. As surreal as the footage may be, it's kinda hilarious when you learn that he is saying exactly what you think he's been saying.
    Chewbacca: Hey! Where the hell have you been?!
    Han: Alright! Don't lose your temper! I'll come right back and give you a hand!
    Chewbacca: Where are you goin'?!
    Han: To make my report!
  • In behind-the-scenes footage, Mark Hamill pulls the little snake out of the X-Wing's engine; it bites him as he's being fed Yoda's lines.
    Mark: Ow! It f—in' bit me!
    Crewmember: It bit you?
    Mark: Yeah! [to another crewmember] Didn't he bite me? He just took– it was a little love-nip!
  • Meta-example: The way Irvin Kershner described the moment he revealed the real twist to Mark Hamill.
    "You know, Darth Vader's your father." "Whaa?"
    • Even better, Kershner said the only people who knew were him, Lucas, and producer Gary Kurtz (and later James Earl Jones when he recorded the dialogue). "So if the spoiler gets out, we'll know it was you."
    • Mark Hamill would later explain how nervous he was about being responsible for protecting the plot twist. Evidently he talks in his sleep. Also, Carrie Fisher was constitutionally incapable of keeping any secret anyone told her, so if he let her find out, the entire world would know within a few hours.note 
    • According to Mark, Harrison Ford's reaction when the premiere got to the twist was to turn to him and say, "Hey kid, you didn't fuckin' tell me that."


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