When Disney bought Lucasfilm in 2012, fans had much to celebrate, not least that a new series of movies in the blockbuster franchise was on the way. There was however one decision that many fans were less happy with–the decision that the Expanded Universe of spin-off novels, comic books, TV shows, and video games was no longer to be part of Star Wars canon. Now, Star Wars Story Group member Leland Chee has spoken about what he believes was one of the main reasons for this decision.

The Star Wars Story Group is a division of Lucasfilm dedicated to overseeing ongoing franchise storylines and maintaining continuity. Speaking to Syfy’s Fandom Files podcast, Chee suggested a reason why the entire 30-year-old Expanded Universe was rebranded as Star Wars Legends, and no longer part of “official” franchise story chronology. It’s down to the death of one central character–everyone’s favorite Wookiee, Chewbacca.

“For me it came down to simply that we had killed Chewbacca in Legends–a big moon had fallen on him,” he said, referencing the 1999 novel The New Jedi Order: Vector Prime, in which Chewie sacrifices himself to save Han. “Part of that [original decision] was Chewbacca, because he can’t speak and just speaks in growls, he was a challenging character to write for in novels. Publishing had decided they needed to kill somebody, and it was Chewbacca.”

“But if you have the opportunity to bring back Chewbacca into a live action film, you’re not gonna deprive fans that,” he added. “There’s no way that I’d want to do an Episode VII that didn’t have Chewbacca in it and have to explain that Chewbacca had a moon fall on his head. And if we were going to overturn a monumental decision like that, everything else was really just minor in comparison.”

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Chee subsequently clarified that this wasn’t an official Lucasfilm statement on the decision to retire the Expanded Universe. “Chewbacca and the Legends decision is my personal rationalization,” he tweeted. “The decision was made long before I joined the Story Group.”

In related news, the synopsis for the upcoming spin-off Solo: A Star Wars Story has been released. It revealed that the movie will feature the first meeting between Han and Chewie. It hits theaters on May 25, 2018.

In addition, other members of the Star Wars Story Group spoke recently about some of the decisions made in the The Last Jedi, including the presence of the compass from the game Battlefront II and the origin of Han’s dice.