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Decades ago, the lovable misfits of the Star Wars universe – dreamed up by George Lucas – sailed into our lives and captured generations with their plucky battle against Darth Vader and the evil Galactic Empire.
The Star Wars franchise has given us so much that they have become pop-culture lore: Epic battle scenes in space, Yoda, Darth Vader, lightsabers, the Force, tie-fighters, X-wings, imperial starships, the death stars, and so much more.
But to fans like myself, so many Star Wars quotes have become cinema history as well.
One of my favorite characters is Han Solo (who shot first, by the way!), the charismatic captain of the millennium falcon and father of Kylo Ren.
The smuggler with a heart of gold and a tongue dripping with sarcasm has many iconic scenes and famous quotes. His lines are brimming with humor and wit, but they often have heart behind them as well.
Here are some of the best Star Wars Han Solo quotes to impress your friends at your next nerdy gathering.
1. “Laugh it up, Fuzzball.”
Han Solo (Harrison Ford) says this line in Star Wars: Episode V—The Empire Strikes Back (1980) to Chewbacca (played by Peter Mayhew).
Han and Chewbacca have a great friendship built on years of smuggling together and having each other’s backs, but that doesn’t mean they won’t laugh at each other.
When Han attempts to goad Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) into admitting that she has feelings for him, Chewbacca has a good laugh at his expense when the Princess dresses him down, prompting this reaction.
2. “Never tell me the odds!”
Han says this line to C-3PO (voiced by Anthony Daniels) in Star Wars: Episode V—The Empire Strikes Back. The group is trying to flee from the Empire’s forces when Han decides to lose their pursuers by flying into an asteroid field.
C-3PO points out that their odds of surviving are very low, and Han replies with this iconic line.
This line encompasses everything about Han—he’s a risk-taker, and he’s spent his whole life doing the opposite of what people think is the logical or safe thing to do.
3. “I know.”
Star Wars: Episode V—The Empire Strikes Back ends in tragedy. Jabba’s bounty hunter, Boba Fett (Jeremy Bulloch), captures Han and is about to freeze him in carbonite.
After two movies of increasingly flirty banter, Princess Leia finally admits that she loves him, and Han replies with this line.
In the script, Han was supposed to say, “I’ll be back,” but Ford improvised this line because he thought it was simple, fit the character’s tough-guy image, and added a touch of humor to a sad scene.
If you ask me, The Empire Strikes Back is still the best Star Wars episode even after all these years.
4. “It’s the ship that made the Kessel run in less than 12 parsecs.”
Han says this line in Star Wars: Episode IV—A New Hope (1977) when Obi-Wan Kenobi – aka Ben Kenobi (Alec Guinness) – and Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) come to him looking for a way to sneak Luke to Alderaan.
At first, Ben is skeptical of the Millennium Falcon’s speed, but Han delivers a rousing defense of his ship. This is one of the first iconic Star Wars Han Solo quotes and introduces us to an important aspect of his character—never insult his ship in front of him.
5. “Look, Your Worshipfulness, let’s get one thing straight. I take orders from just one person: me.”
Han delivers this line to Princess Leia in Star Wars: Episode IV—A New Hope when the gang is just getting together. Royal Leia is used to people following her orders but quickly learns that independent, stubborn Han will not treat her that way.
This line gives us a look at Han’s character (the man never got used to following orders) and sets up the love-hate dynamic between Leia and Han that fans adore so much.
6. “And I thought they smelled bad on the outside.”
You can trust Han to bring a moment of humor even in the tensest situations. In Star Wars: Episode V—The Empire Strikes Back, Luke almost dies when he gets stranded in a snowstorm. Han cuts open a Tauntaun carcass to warm Luke up after hypothermia and delivers this line.
The scene is very serious because Luke’s life is in danger (and a bit gross), but this joke helps lighten it up.
7. “You like me because I’m a scoundrel. There aren’t enough scoundrels in your life.”
Star Wars: Episode V—The Empire Strikes Back is a very dramatic movie in part because of the romantic tension between Han and Princess Leia. Although Princess Leia claims to hate Han and his criminal ways, her behavior often says otherwise.
Han points this out with this line, claiming that the sheltered Princess wants a bad guy after all. Leia’s next line, “I happen to like nice men,” isn’t wrong in the end because Han really has a heart of gold.
In the end, Han was right because, despite all of her protests, they shared a kiss right after this line.
8. “3PO, you tell that slimy piece of worm ridden filth, he’ll get no such pleasure from us! [Chewie roars, and Han continues a bit uncertain] Right?”
This quote is from Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi.
9. “Hey, kid.”
This quote comes from Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker (2019). It’s a touching moment between Kylo Ren and the ghost or memory of Han Solo.
Even though Kylo Ren killed his father, who has now become a member of the Force, Han holds no grudges against him. Instead, he forgives Kylo, who must forgive himself as well.
Here’s the full exchange:
Han Solo: Hey, kid.
[Kylo turns to see Han Solo standing behind him]
Han Solo: I missed you, son.
Kylo Ren: Your son is dead.
Han Solo: No! Kylo Ren is dead. My son is alive.
Kylo Ren: You’re just a memory!
Han Solo: Your memory. Come home.
Kylo Ren: It’s too late… She’s gone.
Han Solo: Your mother’s gone. But what she stood for, what she fought for… that’s not gone.
Han Solo: Ben…
Kylo Ren: I know what I have to do, but I don’t know if I have the strength to do it.
Han Solo: You do.
Kylo Ren: Dad…
Han Solo: I know.
It’s a touching moment in this piece of Star Wars story between father and son that began even before Kylo was born in another father-son conflict between Anakin and Luke.
And Han has a long history of using the word “kid” to Luke, to whom he also had acted as a mentor or father before Luke became a Jedi.
A good example is in A New Hope when Han shoots Darth Vader’s tie fighter squadron out of the sky to clear a path for Luke to destroy the first Death Star, “You’re all clear, kid, now let’s blow this thing and go home.”
10. “Boring conversation anyway. Luke, we’re going to have company!”
In Star Wars: Episode IV—A New Hope, we find out that Han’s improvisation skills are not always the best.
Along with Luke and Chewbacca, Han is trying to save Princess Leia from the Empire’s forces when the ship’s staff discovers them via the radio.
Han at first tries to improvise as if he’s a Stormtrooper and try to fake that everything is okay; it was just a slight weapons malfunction. But, of course, this quickly gets discovered.
Although this means that their initial plan to get out undiscovered has to change, Han still finds the time to crack a quick joke.
11. “You know, sometimes I amaze myself.”
Besides his humor, one of Han’s other well-known traits is his arrogance. He delivers this line in Star Wars: Episode IV—A New Hope, right after the gang successfully rescues Princess Leia from Darth Vader (even though they had unexpected company, as shown in the quote above).
Han is quick to marvel at his own handiwork in rescuing the Princess (although Luke and Chewbacca also helped).
Of course, Han’s ego isn’t going to go unchecked anymore. Princess Leia quickly puts him into place from her first interaction with him and reminds Han that he’s just a person like everyone else.
12. “Traveling through space ain’t like dusting crops, Farm Boy.”
Han Solo delivers this line in Star Wars: Episode IV—A New Hope. Luke starts panicking after Imperial cruisers start chasing them and make the cardinal mistake of lecturing Han about the Millennium Falcon.
Han quickly puts Luke in his place and explains that there is a reason why he is holding off on jumping into lightspeed while reminding Luke that he doesn’t know that much about the world.
This quote is iconic because it sets up Han’s character. Although he is funny and arrogant, that arrogance is justified because of his amazing skills as a pilot that get them out of this scrape and many more.
It also shows Luke and the audience that although our main character is special for the future of this world, he doesn’t actually know much about it.
13. “Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side, kid.”
In Star Wars: Episode IV—A New Hope, Han agrees to help Luke, but not because he believes the stories about him being chosen by the Force.
Han doesn’t believe in the Force at all because it clashes with his practical nature. In his mind, the Force and all that talk about the dark side belong in the same category as hokey religions.
Instead, Han would rather fight his way out of a scrape relying on his wits and his trusty blaster than on legends of the Jedi. Although Han eventually believes in the Force, he never loses his practical side.
Also, check out the best Star Wars quotes about the Force.
14. “Women always figure out the truth. Always.”
Han doesn’t lose his iconic lines in later films, including Star Wars: Episode VII—The Force Awakens (2015). In this line, he calls out Finn (John Boyega) for lying about his background to impress Rey (Daisy Ridley).
Before Leia, Han was a bit of a womanizer, and with Leia, he had to learn to navigate one of the most perceptive women in the universe. When he tells Finn that lying won’t do him any good, he’s probably speaking from experience.
15. “Don’t everybody thank me at once.”
Han says this in Star Wars: Episode IV—A New Hope after he outruns the Empire. The line is sarcastic because nobody actually thanks him (Han immediately interprets this as everyone being ungrateful, but maybe they were still recovering from their close brushes with death).
Throughout the series, Han is quick to point out his achievements and his skill as a pilot. Some of this is because he is very arrogant, but he also gets overlooked by everyone else as just a smuggler who has to toot his own horn.
Check out the best sci-fi movies of all time, ranked.
16. “I’m in it for the money.”
In Star Wars: Episode IV—A New Hope, Han is quick to explain why he is helping Luke and Leia. He doesn’t care about the revolution or about the princess. He is just looking out for number one, following the same principles that kept him safe during his smuggling career.
However, this changes even before the movie is over as he begins to care about the principles and about his friends, particularly Leia.
17. “Get in there, you big furry oaf! I don’t care what you smell. Get in there, and don’t worry about it!”
This quote comes from Star Wars: Episode IV—A New Hope as well. Chewie, Han, Leia, and Luke have to slide into a garbage chute to escape the detention area where Leia has been held prisoner and interrogated by Darth Vader.
When Chewie roars that he smells something in there, Han orders him to get in there and not worry about it. It’s typical Han, diving heads first into trouble.
When Han gets into the trash compactor, he has to agree with Chewie, though, as he gives Leia a hard time about their escape route since it was her idea to begin with. Or, as Han puts it, “what an incredible smell you’ve discovered”.
This scene has so many funny Han quotes. Fx, when the trash compactor starts to, Han responds with, “one thing for sure, we’re all gonna get a lot thinner.”
Another example is the long-running gag that has to be said in every Star Wars movie, “I have a bad feeling about this!”. This famous Star Wars quote is said by different characters throughout the films, but in the trash compactor scene, it’s Han who says it.
18. “A Jedi knight? I’m out of it for a little while, and everybody gets delusions of grandeur”.
In Star Wars VI – Return of the Jedi (1983), Han is saved by Leia and defrosted from his carbonite sleep. However, it’s a trap, as it happens in Jabba the Hut’s palace.
Leia is taken prisoner instead, and Han is thrown into the Bantha pit where his old friend Chewie is also held captive.
When Chewbacca tells Han that Luke has become a Jedi Knight, he can’t believe it.
So that was my take on the best Han Solo quotes. As you can see, most of these come from the original trilogy, when Han was in his prime.
Han Solo is a great character!
Sure he doesn’t give much about the Force, which he mostly views as a bunch of mumbo-jumbo.
But his friends and the rebel alliance can always count on him and Chewie when it counts, whether it’s taking on hordes of Stormtroopers in a straight fight with laser guns or taking on a massive battle station in space.
Did I miss any?
Which iconic Han Solo is your favorite?
About the author:
Jan Sørup is a videographer and photographer from Denmark. He owns filmdaft.com and the Danish company Apertura, which produces video content for big companies in Denmark and Scandinavia. Jan has a background in music, has drawn webcomics, and is a former lecturer at the University of Copenhagen.