And with that seemingly casual question, Greedo stepped into Star Wars infamy as the bounty hunter that came close (but no cigar) in his attempt to claim Jabba the Hutt's bounty that rested on the head of space pirate Han Solo.
After some light banter in the Cantina, Han Solo shot Greedo, which established that Solo was a badass and was probably the pilot Ben Kenobi needed to help him haul Luke's ass to Alderaan.
But who was Greedo? Where did he come from? How did he find Solo? And what makes the green fellow tick?
This concept art below from Ralph McQuarrie suggests that Greedo was intended to be a tall lizard-like fellow that sported a green tail and an animal-like demeanor.
|“Oota goota, Solo?”|
In the end, Greedo became an over cocky leathery green fellow that was “Gorn-like” but without the scary factor. Greedo was certainly not a foe that Captain Kirk would have been scared of and, as we now know, neither was Han Solo.
Fun Fact: JJ Abrams used this concept art for The Force Awakens and the green furry guy can be spotted in Maz Katana's bar.
Greedo was a bounty hunter from the planet Rodia. Although Greedo's father was known for his bounty hunter abilities, the younger Greedo inherited very little of his father's talents.
His legacy in Star Wars was heightened when George Lucas changed the Special Edition of the movie to make it appear that Greedo shot Han first but missed.
Arguments have raged across the interwebs ever since.
Fanboys have raged, and T-shirts have been printed.
The change made Solo's turn from an anti-hero to the guy that saves the day seem less important as he was not simply a good guy with no moral ambiguity. Fans argued this diminished the character.
Here's the oft-quoted exchange between Greedo and Han Solo:
Greedo: [In Huttese to Han] “Going somewhere, Solo?”
Han Solo: “Yes, Greedo. I was just going to see your boss. Tell Jabba I've got his money.”
Greedo: “It's too late. You should have paid him when you had the chance. Jabba's put a price on your head so large, every bounty hunter in the galaxy will be looking for you. I'm lucky I found you first.”
Han Solo: “Yeah, but this time I've got the money.”
Greedo: “If you give it to me, I might forget I found you.”
Han Solo: [stealthily going for his blaster held at his side] “I don't have it with me. Tell Jabba…”
Greedo: “Jabba‘s through with you! He has no use for smugglers who drop their shipments at the first sign of an Imperial cruiser.”
Han Solo: “Even I get boarded sometimes. Do you think I had a choice?”
Greedo: “You can tell that to Jabba. At best, he may only take your ship.”
Han Solo: “Over my dead body!”
Greedo: “That's the idea… I've been looking forward to this for a long time.”
Han Solo: “Yeah, I'll bet you have.”
[Han blasts Greedo, shooting first, then heads out, tossing the bartender a coin]
Han Solo: “Sorry about the mess.”