Monday, November 20, 2017

Phil Lord and Chris Miller Comment on Leaving 'Solo: A Star Wars Story'


Back in June, Star Wars fans (and the entertainment industry as a whole) was shocked to learn that Phil Lord and Chris Miller (The Lego Movie, 21 Jump Street) would no longer be directing the, then untitled, Han Solo movie.  Directors changes are not uncommon in Hollywood (see: Episode IX), but what made this one unique is that Lord and Miller had been shooting the film since January.  Since then, with Ron Howard having taken over Solo: A Star Wars Story, Lord and Miller have remained silent apart from a statement in the original press release. 

The duo finally broke their silence on their departure at the Vulture festival in LA this past week, during a panel about their old TV series Clone High.  When asked about it by an audience member, Lord said, 

"The experience of shooting the movie was wonderful. We had the most incredible cast and crew and collaborators. I think in terms of us leaving the project, I think everybody went in with really good intentions and our approach to making the movie was different than theirs. That was a really big gap to bridge, and it proved to be too big." 

Lord's statement lines up with media reports following their departure that the duo had clashed with Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy and the film's screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan.  Some of the reported disagreements were over the amount of improvisation Lord and Miller were allowing their actors to do, their camera set ups, and the overall tone of the film.

Miller added,

"As Phil said, we had such a great relationship with cast and crew, we were really rooting for them."

When Ron Howard came in to reshoot large amounts of the film, with the majority of Lord and Miller's cast staying on board (only Michael K. Williams left the project due to scheduling conflicts caused by the reshoots).  Filming finally wrapped on the film in October, with Howard currently overseeing the post-production work on Solo.

Lord also told the audience that the duo hold no ill will towards the film, saying,

"We’re really proud of the work we did on the movie and we wish everybody the best."

It will interesting to know, if we ever even find out, how much of what Lord and Miller shot wind up staying in the final film.

Solo: A Star Wars Story hits theaters on May 25th, 2018 and stars Alden Ehrenreich (Hail Caesar!) as Han Solo, Donald Glover (Atlanta) as Lando Calrissian, Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) as Kura, Woody Harrelson (True Detective) as Beckett, Phoebe Waller-Bridge (Fleabag), Thandie Newton (Westworld), and Paul Bettany (The Avengers).  The film is directed by Ron Howard (A Beautiful Mind), with a script by Lawrence Kasdan (The Empire Strikes Back) and his son Jon Kasdan (The First Time). 

Follow The Star Wars Underworld on Twitter @TheSWU for more updates about this story and other breaking Star Wars news.


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