Billy Dee Williams; Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian

Donald Glover Shines as Lando, But Billy Dee Williams Remains Unmatched

Billy Dee Williams, the original actor behind the iconic Lando Calrissian character in the “Star Wars” series, recently shared his thoughts with Radio Times on Donald Glover’s rendition of the charismatic smuggler turned rebel hero.

Williams recounted a pleasant lunch meeting with Glover. He described Glover as a delightful and highly talented individual. However, Williams emphasized, “When it comes to Lando Calrissian, there’s only one Lando Calrissian. I created that character.”

During their conversation, Williams offered Glover a piece of advice on playing Lando. He simply said, “Be charming – two words!” That was the extent of his guidance, reflecting his straightforward approach to the character’s essence.

Glover stepped into the role of a younger Lando in the 2018 “Star Wars” prequel titled “Solo.” A limited series focusing on Lando Calrissian was initially announced for Disney+ in 2020, with Justin Simien of “Dear White People” fame attached. However, in a turn of events in July 2023, it was revealed that Donald and Stephen Glover would take over as writers for the “Lando” series, which is now being developed into a movie.

Williams expressed his confidence in Glover’s capabilities to reinvent the character for a new era. He acknowledged Glover’s talent and creativity, stating, “He’s part of a whole new generation. He’ll create whatever he needs to create, to bring appeal to the character.”

Reflecting on his own legacy and passing the torch, Williams remarked, “I took care of the 20th century, now he’s got to take care of the 21st.”

When asked about the possibility of reprising his role as Lando in a future “Star Wars” project, Williams humorously responded, “Pay me a lot of money and I’ll sell my soul.”