- "I have money. It's trust and character I need around me. You know, who you choose to be around you lets you know who you are. And one car in exchange for knowing what a man's made of? That's a price I can live with. Look at all those people down there. They follow the rules for what? They're letting fear lead them. What happens if they don't? Life's simple. You make choices and you don't look back."
- ―Han to Sean Boswell
Han Seoul-Oh was a street racer, thief and a business partner to Takashi. A protagonist in The Fast and the Furious franchise series, Han began as a member of Dominic Toretto's crew. Following the death of his lover Gisele Yashar in Spain, he left the United States to live in Tokyo, Japan before he was killed by Deckard Shaw. Originally a major character in The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, Han was initially the only character from Tokyo Drift to appear in the subsequent films, before Sean Boswell's appearance in Furious 7.
Han Seoul-Oh was born and raised in the United States. On account of his conversation with Cara Mirtha, he lived most of his life, well into adulthood, in the United States and had never been East of the Atlantic. At some point, Han used to smoke but quit. However, out of habit and to keep his hands preoccupied, he was always eating something.
At some point, Han traveled to Baja, Mexico. He heard word of Dominic Toretto’s reputation in the racing scene prior, but never officially met Dominic until he visited Mexico. From there they established a relationship and Han began “running” with Dominic for unspecified reasons. At some point Han owned a 1970 Plymouth Road Runner while in the company of Dominic. The car was won from Han by Dominic in a race.
Han arrives in the Dominican Republic when Dominic prepares for a new job regarding the transportation of gas. He is picked up at the airport by the likes of Cara Mirtha and Malo, Dominic's friends. He is later taken to Rico Santos' house, where Dominic lives, and they have dinner with the rest of the Santos family. He takes an immediate attraction to Cara, who shares a mutual attraction for him.
Later, he follows Dominic and Santos to the prison where Tego Leo was being kept before Santos helped him escape. When Dominic takes to take them to a secluded club to meet the man responsible for the transport of their score, Dominic tells him to drive around the block or wait in the car. Han instead decides to enter the club where he mingles with Cara and Malo at the bar.
Cara and Malo assume that Han is either Chinese or Japanese based on his physical appearance. However, Han is quick to clarify that he was born and raised in the United States and never been East of the Atlantic. When Cara asked how he met Dominic, Han briefly explained how they met each other in Mexico. Malo, realizing that the two were attracted to each other, asked if they wanted a room. Cara instead gives him her drink and she and Han leave the bar, presumably to dance or have sex.
Fast & Furious
When Dominic and his crew move in to steal a series of fuel tanks from a truck, Han and Cara, driving a 1967 Chevrolet C-Series truck, are one of the first to hitch their vehicles to a tanker and make off with it with the help of Letty Ortiz, who severs the connection between the tanker and the main truck with a form of liquid nitrogen.
After Santos and Leo make off their tank and Letty is rescued from the runaway truck after the driver abandons it, Han and Cara are given their share of the profits. When he has the chance to speak with Dominic, Han informs him that the police raided their garage in Baracoa and were looking for Dominic. Realizing that their oil heist will no doubt cause the authorities to come to the Dominican, Dominic disbands the crew, telling Han to go “do his own thing”. Optimistic, Han mentions that they're doing “crazy shit” in Tokyo, suggesting that he would go there next.
When Dominic, his sister Mia Toretto and ex-FBI agent, Brian O'Conner, decide to steal Hernan Reyes’s stockpile of cash, they recruit their former associates in order to form a new crew. Han is brought in as "a chameleon who can blend in anywhere".
While planning the heist, he builds a romantic relationship with fellow team member Gisele Yashar. Han remarks that he thinks he's fallen in love after watching Gisele drift and perform tight hairpin turns. When Dominic asks Han to get Reyes' hand print, Gisele volunteers to go with him, causing Dominic to smile.
Whilst scoping Reyes at the beach, Gisele attributes Han's constant snacking to a need to occupy his hands due to being a former smoker, adding that he most likely smoked packs a day. Han, however, observes that the way she holds a handgun reveals to him that she is ex-Mossad. When Dominic set their plans in motion, Han and Gisele pose as a police officer and sanitation worker respectively.
Gisele drives the garbage truck that is used to keep the actual vault that has all of Reyes’ money in it, while the fake is used to distract the police and DSS agent Luke Hobbs and officer Elena Neves. As a result, Han and Gisele are able to get away with the money and return it to the safe house.
With their share of the money, the two officially become a couple and go their separate ways from the crew. Driving in a Lexus LFA, Han and Gisele travel through Europe together. When they contemplate where to go next, Gisele brings up Tokyo as a possibility. Han agrees and figure that they’ll get to Tokyo “eventually”.
Fast & Furious 6
Following the discovery that Letty Ortiz has survived the assassination attempt by Fenix Calderon and that she is a member of a military precision heist crew led by Owen Shaw, Dominic calls in the crew to help him get her back in exchange for pardons. Han and Gisele are living in Hong Kong, when Han suggests that they should settle down and start a future together.
Gisele, however, believed they were doing just that by being together, appearing to miss the subtext of his words. When it becomes apparent that they’re being surrounded by the local authorities, the two stand back-to-back, ready to fight the police. However, a detective arrives with a cell phone and throws it to Han. When Han answers, Dominic is on the end.
When they arrive in London, they’re given the details of their situation with Owen Shaw and Letty Ortiz. During their first encounter with Shaw’s team, Han, Brian and Gisele are attacked by the sniper Adolfson, who fires on their cars once they reach Interpol.
Brian, Han and Gisele are pinned down long enough for Vegh, Jah and Klaus to escape. Brain follows after them, but Gisele runs out into the open to fire on Jan and Klaus’s getaway car. At the last second, Han is able to pull her out of the way and the two take cover behind a fire hydrant as Adolfson fires on them multiple times before escaping.
During the team's attempt to stop Owen and his team from hijacking the military convoy, Han and Gisele pursue Denlinger on their motorcycles, a Harley Davidson model and Ducati Monster. Gisele is the first to reach Dillinger, hangs on the side of his Land Rover and is nearly crushed on the side of oncoming truck, but Han jumps onto the Land Rover in time to swerve the vehicle out of the way and save her life.
When Mia Toretto is taken prisoner by Shaw, Dominic and the others are forced to let Shaw and Riley Hicks go to ensure her safety. However, as soon as they’re allowed, they go after the plane Shaw is planning to take off on with Mia. Gisele and Han are one of two teams designated with the task of keeping the plan on the ground using the harpoons. During their efforts, Gisele is pulled out of their car by Adolfson. Han follows after her, climbing onto the top of their car.
Though Gisele is able to fend him off, she is knocked off of Adolfson’s car. Han is able to save at the last moment. Gisele, realizing that Adolfson plans to kill Han, lets go of Han's arms and allows herself to fall, Han is unable to save her. Before she is killed from the fall, she shoots Adolfson, knocking him off balance. A devastated Han attacks Adolfson and throws him off of the car and into the turbine of the plane.
After the plane crashes and Dominic survives the car crash in the attempt to escape the burning plane, Mia is the only one to approach Han and attempt to comfort him when she realizes what happened to Gisele when she isn't with him.
The Fast and The Furious: Tokyo Drift
Living in Tokyo, Han uses his wealth to start his own garage, as well as purchasing various expensive, modified tuner cars to store in the garage. Han also keeps himself occupied with various females, with a club attached next door to his garage. Additionally, he becomes involved with Tokyo's elite street racers and one of its most prominent drifters. At some point, he acquired a 2001 Nissan Silvia S15 Spec-S and rebuilt and restored it from the ground up, the car later being referred to by Twinkie as the Mona Lisa of the drift world.
Han also affiliates himself with Takashi, the nephew of Kamata, a Yakuza member, securing profits from various business ventures. Unbeknownst to either Kamata or Takashi, Han begins stealing money from their operation and does so without either of them noticing for some time.
When Han meets Sean Boswell, Boswell crossed Takashi’s unspoken boundaries by speaking to his girlfriend, Neela. Han questions why Takashi is still bothering with “high school girls” when Takashi decides to confront Sean. When Sean accepts to Takashi’s challenge to drift, Han gives Sean the keys to his Nissan Silvia, curious to see what Sean is made of.
While Sean loses the race, destroying his car in the process, Han is intrigued by what he saw in Sean for merely challenging Takashi. The following day, Han meets Sean outside of his school and demands that he get into his car. Han makes a point to tell Sean that he is in his debt and would be his personal “errand boy” on account of the car that he owes him. Sean is willing to agree to the terms so long as Han teaches him how to drive.
When Sean falls out of favor with his father, Lieutenant Boswell, Sean comes to live in Han’s garage. While there, he works on the cars available to him in the garage and Han teaches him how to drift properly. As Sean improves, Han’s situation is complicated when Takashi becomes more forceful in threatening Sean to stay away from Neela. Eventually Takashi confronts Han about the money’s been stealing from his uncle. Han does not attempt to defend his actions to Takashi.
He merely stated that the “side deals” under the protection of Takashi’s word was in the nature of their business. He goes on to say that Takashi needed him and that he would’ve amounted to nothing if it wasn’t for his help. When Takashi becomes distracted by the presence of Neela, Han takes his chance and climbs into his car and escapes.
Takashi and his friend, Morimoto pursue him through the streets of Tokyo, but they are unable to catch him. He protects Sean and Neela from Takashi, allowing them to get ahead of him. When Han finally reaches the intersection of the road, Han’s car is t-boned by a Mercedes S-Class. Han’s car is flipped onto its top. Han, unable to escape the car, is killed in the explosion.
Some time after Han’s death, Sean Boswell meets Dominic Toretto after he requests an audience with him at the parking garage. Dominic races Sean with the 1970 Plymouth Road Runner he won from Han years before.
Following the conclusion of their fight with Owen Shaw, which leaves the mercenary crippled, but alive, his older brother, Deckard Shaw, decides to avenge his brother. Traveling to the United States, Deckard infiltrates the Diplomatic Security Offices in Los Angeles and hacks Luke Hobbs computer for information on the crew responsible for harming his brother.
He locates Han in Tokyo. While in Tokyo he ships a bomb disguised a package to Dominic’s house in Los Angeles, presumably under Han’s name. Focusing on Han, Deckard t-bones his car, causing the car to roll over and ignite. Ditching Dominic’s cross by the burning car he contacts Dominic and informs him that he’s coming to get the rest of them just as Han's car explodes, killing him. In Los Angeles, when Dominic receives the message, it triggers the bomb that destroys the Toretto house.
Dominic travels to Tokyo and meets Sean Boswell. Sean gives him what survived the crash of Han’s car: A picture of Gisele and the cross Dominic used to marry Letty Ortiz. Vowing to avenge Han, Dominic returns to Los Angeles with Han’s remains. Following his return they hold a funeral for Han, with friends and presumably Han’s family present.
Han operates largely as an silent observer when he not proactively involved with his chosen circle of crew. He can deduce the habits and behaviors of others around him by watching their reactions or behavior from the outside. In one instance, Han observes that the way Gisele holds a handgun reveals to him that she is ex-Mossad.
Han himself is prone to forming habits, as noted by Gisele, who attributes Han's constant snacking as a need to occupy his hands as a former chain smoker. While nomadic in nature, Han desired a stable home and family. When involved with Gisele, he suggested several times that they settle down and start a life together in Tokyo. Following her death, Han traveled to Tokyo and formed several bonds with youths who indulged in illegal street racing and drifting in garages.
Though he maintains strong relationships with his established group, he takes a shine to Sean Boswell, an American expat who dared to stand up to his employer's son. He recognizes his own reckless behavior in Sean's bravado and teaches him how to drift and navigate Tokyo. While loyal, Han is not above stealing for necessity or pleasure. The latter puts him in the ill favor of the Yakuza and indirectly results in his death.
As a thief, Han learned to blend into his environment to remain inconspicuous. While he is not incapable of defending himself in a fight, he, however, is not learned in traditional self defense and may be easily overpowered depending on the ability of his opponent. He was able to best Adolfson in their fight, successfully causing the man's death and was able to shove the "Drift King" Takashi away and disorientated him with a single punch to the face. He did struggle when fighting one of Shaw's agents in the London subway; even though Roman was assisting him they could not overpower him.
Han was also a skilled racer, using his driving skills to assist Dominic and his team in heist missions. He was also a capable street racer, easily outracing Takashi and managed to cause the man to crash. He was also observant despite the pressure of driving at such a speed, able to come to Sean's aid when he was being rammed. His observation skills weren't always as potent, unsuccessfully noticing a car trying to t-bone him, which inadvertently caused his death.
- Han's final appearances in Fast & Furious 6 and Furious 7 is archive footage from The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift and photography.
- "Han Seoul-Oh" is a likely play on the name Han Solo of Star Wars fame.
- In Fast Five, when Luke Hobbs orders a DSS agent to run a facial recognition program on Han and Dom, it shows their names as Dominic Toretto and Han Seoul-Oh-- Hobbs then orders an agent to run entries of Dom and Brian's known associates against custom entries, and finds out every one of the crew member's identity. Hobbs states that while they can change their names, they can't change their face - however, everyone else's names are real, implying that Hobbs realizes that the name Han Seoul-Oh is an alias. Despite this, the DSS never do find out more about Han, as his DSS file in Furious 7 only has his photo, location and the name Han Seoul-Oh.
Behind the Scenes
- Both Sung Kang and Justin Lin consider Han Seoul-Oh and Han Lue the same character.
- Han Seoul-Oh was originally an African-American character named "Phoenix". However, Justin Lin campaigned to have the character be re-imagined as an Asian-American since Bow Wow had been cast as the Twinkie character. Universal Studios was initially doubtful of the idea until Justin Lin showed them his film, Better Luck Tomorrow.[note 1]
- Han and his death were indirectly mentioned by Deckard Shaw in Hobbs & Shaw.
- ↑ Crave Online: "Was that character in the script as someone else, and changed to Han, or was it always Han?"
Sung Kang: "No, no, originally the role was named “Phoenix,” and it was an African-American character, but they cast Bow Wow as Twinkie and so they figured, “Hey, we have this Phoenix character, and it’s kind of a brooding guy who’s an older brother for everybody,” and Justin presented it to the studio and said, “What if he’s an Asian-American?” They’re like, “Well, how can an Asian-American be cool like this?” [Laughs] So then he showed them Better Luck Tomorrow."
- ↑ Cite error: Invalid
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- ↑ Fast Five
- ↑ The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Furious 7
- ↑ The Asian guy in 5 Fast 5 Furious is named ‘Han Seoul-Oh,’ are people aware of this?
- ↑ Interview: Fast & Furious 6 Director Justin Lin
- ↑ Exclusive Interview: Sung Kang on Fast & Furious 6
- ↑ Hobbs & Shaw writer promises that justice for Han is coming