Ever since Return of the Jedi was filmed under the working title of Blue Harvest, there has been intense secrecy surrounding the filming and production of movies in the Star Wars franchise. In the absence of hard information, speculation runs wild.
It should be no surprise that the sudden firing of the directors for the untitled Han Solo movie has the rumor mill jumping to hyperspace.
The Empire Fires Back
The stated reason for the firing is the oft-cliched “creative differences.” Numerous reports said that LucasFilm president Kathleen Kennedy had been at odds with Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (The Lego Movie and 21 Jump Street) for months. They reportedly had also conflicted with co-writer and executive producer Lawrence Kasdan (Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens).
In a press release on StarWars.com, Kennedy had this to say;
“Phil Lord and Christopher Miller are talented filmmakers who have assembled an incredible cast and crew, but it’s become clear that we had different creative visions on this film, and we’ve decided to part ways. A new director will be announced soon.”
In the same release, Lord and Miller continued;
“Unfortunately, our vision and process weren’t aligned with our partners on this project. We normally aren’t fans of the phrase ‘creative differences’ but for once this cliché is true. We are really proud of the amazing and world-class work of our cast and crew.”
The pair were brought on to give the film a “tongue-in-cheek sensibility.” Kasdan reportedly felt that they were going too far and making Solo a “comedic personality.” Kasdan wrote the script along with his son Jon Kasdan and he serves as an executive producer for the film.
Ron Howard is reportedly in talks to take over helming of the film, but none of the parties will comment.
A smuggler’s tale
Filming on the yet untitled movie began in February at Pinewood Studios and several weeks of principle photography still remain. Several weeks of reshoots later this summer were already scheduled several months ago and this is not unusual. LucasFilm states that the release date remains unchanged from May 25, 2018.
In March, Disney CEO Bob Iger described the movie as covering Solo’s life from when he was 18 to 24. It would reveal how Solo met the wookie, Chewbacca, and how he acquired the Millennium Falcon (a game of Sabacc). The film stars Alden Ehrenreich with Donald Glover as a young Lando Calrissian. Woody Harrelson is cast as Solo’s criminal mentor. The cast also includes Emilia Clarke, Thandie Newton and Michael K. Williams.