Friday, February 9, 2018

Ron Howard and Kathleen Kennedy Talk About the Infamous 'Solo' Directors Change

By: Dominic Jones

Back in June of 2017, fans thought that in May 2018 they would be seeing a Han Solo movie directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller (The Lego Movie).  Fast forward to now and the Han Solo movie (now titled Solo) is still coming out in May 2018 only now with Ron Howard as director.  In late June, Lucasfilm made the shocking decision to let go of Lord and Miller, fairly late into production, and bring in Howard to redo most of the movie.  Howard and Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy spoke candidly about the change in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly's Anthony Breznican for the magazine's cover story about Solo.

About what led to the split with Lord and Miller, Kennedy explained,

"I think these guys are hilarious, but they come from a background of animation and sketch comedy and when you are making these movies you can do that and there’s plenty of room for improvisation, we do that all the time, but it has to be inside of a highly structured process or you can’t get the work done and you can’t move the armies of people to anticipate and have things ready. So, it literally came down to process. Just getting it done."

She also said, "when it was not working out as we had all hoped, it wasn’t out of lack of talent."

When asked about how much of the film he changed, Howard said,

"I don’t really want to explain it. I don’t really want to be specific about that because, again, I don’t even want that to matter to fans. I could understand why you’d ask, and some might even be curious, but look, everybody who has been involved in this has done nothing but love what this movie could be, and that’s been the vibe around it. I think audiences are gonna feel that love and excitement."

The change was a source of great concern for many Star Wars fans (myself included).  Fortunately it sounds like Howard was able to come in and course correct whatever issues there were.  While I still would like to see what Lord and Miller could have done with Star Wars, I'm excited to see what Howard does when the film hits theaters in May.

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 Qi'Ra, Woody Harrelson (True Detective) as Beckett, Phoebe Waller-Bridge (Fleabag) as L3-3K, Thandie Newton (Westworld) as Val, and Paul Bettany (The Avengers) as Dryden Vos.  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).

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