With this upcoming weekend's opening of Solo: A Star Wars Story, so many questions are circulating, chief among them ones about the newest characters to enter the series. For example, who voices L3-37? Phoebe Waller-Bridge is the newest actress to join the Star Wars lineup, and TBH, she's already set to become a hilarious, feminist fan favorite.
Prior to landing the role, Waller-Bridge was best known for her role in the comedy Crashing, as well as for not only starring in the Amazon series Fleabag, but also creating, writing, and producing it. Waller-Bridge has made a name for herself as a feminist comedian, and interestingly, that angle lends itself to the droid she plays in the Star Wars movie.
"She's a self-made droid, so she created herself out of parts of other droids. Which sounds kind of frightening when you put it like that," Waller-Bridge told The Los Angeles Times about her character:
She turned herself into a unique creature that's kind of taller, stronger, more independent than she originally was. She has an agenda that's bigger than the sum of her parts. It's great to play a droid with a message.
Interestingly, Waller-Bridge wasn't actually a Star Wars fan prior to her audition for the role. In fact, not only that, but she didn't even know what a droid was until after she tried out. "I hadn't seen any of the Solo films, I'm like one of the five people in the world," she said on The Graham Norton Show. "I was going to the audition, and I thought, this character is amazing, she's a revolutionary, she's really cool and the dialogue is amazing. It said in one of the stage directions, 'droid,' so I was like... droid? What is a droid?" She continued:
I Googled droid, and then, nothing much really came up weirdly... there wasn't explicitly [the word] 'robot.' I was in the taxi on the way to the audition, and I was like, sh*t, I really should know what a droid is. He called his family and asked what a droid is.
However, neither she nor her cab driver had any luck in figuring it out. From there, Waller-Bridge decided just to "play it like a human," which she thought was working in her favor until the directors asked her to just do it "a little more droid-ey." Luckily, one of them explained to her that it was a robot, and ultimately, she landed the role. "They decided they didn't need it to be all that 'droid-ey' in the end, so I think it might have worked in my favor that way," she said, according to Variety.
Donald Glover, who plays Lando in the movie, echoed Waller-Bridge's sentiments of her character, telling Entertainment Weekly: “I think they’re both kind of self-made. And they get each other in that way.” Co-writer Jon Kasdan agreed, saying: "She’s a self-modified droid. The idea is that she’s sort of a mutt, if you will, of various parts of different kinds of droids who has improved upon herself.” He continued:
She’s a complete individual in the galaxy. We wanted to have it be a completely different kind of droid than you’ve ever seen in the movies. And we definitely wanted it to be a female. We thought it was more than time for that.
Screerant reported earlier this month that the plot is set as a sort of prequel to the Star Wars movies, in which fans will see Han Solo's younger life on the planet Corellia. It's during this time that Han is set to meet some of the most famous characters in the series, like Chewbacca, and in the face of devastating danger, the group has to ban together for the first time.
Waller-Bridge's character L3 is set to serve as the independent, free-minded counterpart to Lando, as her official description describes her as "an enlightened navigator who cares deeply about droid rights." This may just be the beginning of Waller-Bridge (and possibly L3's career), but either way, they're starting off on the right foot – er – hydraulic leg.