On Tatooine R2D2 and C3P0 approach Jabba the Hut’s palace. R2 bears a holographic message from Luke Skywalker who wants to bargain for the captive Han Solo. To C3P0’s dismay, the droids are presented to Jabba as gifts. Jabba won’t relinquish his favorite wall decoration—Han frozen in carbonite.
A bounty hunter delivers the mighty Chewbacca to Jabba. Now both Han and Chewbacca are his prisoners. That night, the bounty hunter slips into Jabba’s chamber and frees Han from the carbonite. Revived but temporarily blind, he asks who is there. The bounty hunter removes a head mask and speaks—it is Leia. Their reunion is short-lived; Jabba and his wretched retinue discover them. Han is imprisoned and Leia enslaved (wearing the famous gold bikini).
A lone robed figure arrives at Jabba’s palace. Jedi Knight Luke Skywalker has come to negotiate for his friends. When Jabba refuses to barter, Luke demands their release. Jabba drops him into a pit with a rancor beast. Luke kills the rancor, infuriating Jabba. Luke, Han, and Chewbacca are to be executed in the Pit of Sarlaak, a deadly creature burrowed in the desert sand. Meanwhile, Lando Calrissian has secretly infiltrated Jabba’s palace and is disguised as a guard onboard Jabba’s sail barge. Also aboard are C3P0 and R2, who has Luke’s light saber hidden inside.
With Leia chained at his side, Jabba views the proceedings from his barge. Luke, Han and Chewbacca are about to be dropped from the prisoner hovercraft into the pit. Luke issues Jabba a final ultimatum: release them or die. Jabba laughingly refuses. Luke leaps off the plank as R2 ejects his light saber into the air. Luke catches it and attacks and kills the guards. Leia strangles Jabba with the chain. Han, whose eyesight has returned, saves Lando from falling into the pit. Grabbing Leia, Luke swings swashbuckler-style to the hovercraft. They pick up R2 and C3PO and speed off as the barge explodes.
Luke returns to Dagobah to complete his Jedi training while the others head for a rebel base. Luke finds Master Yoda weak and ill. He tells Luke he has nothing more to learn, but he must confront Vader before he is a true Jedi. His final words reveal there is another Skywalker but dies and vanishes without giving further details. Obi Wan appears and tells Luke the other Skywalker is Leia, Luke’s twin sister. Luke rejoins the rebel fleet, but does not yet tell Leia what he knows. Rebel spies have uncovered a new and more powerful Death Star being constructed above Endor. The Alliance plans an attack, but a shield generator on the planet’s surface protects it. Lando will lead the attack group, while Han heads a mission to deactivate the shield generator. Luke, Leia, and Chewbacca volunteer to go with him.