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Ron Howard Talks Taking ‘HAN SOLO’ Film Job

June 23, 2017

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Following the departure of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller from the upcoming HAN SOLO Star Wars spinoff film, Lucasfilm has already announced that Oscar-winning director Ron Howard will be taking over. After the announcement, Howard spoke to Variety about taking the gig.

“It’s a little opportunity that came my way. I’ve been a fan forever. It’s gratifying to be asked to lend my voice to the STAR WARS universe. So many people involved in the STAR WARS franchise are friends. It’s already been in production, and there’s a lot of really great work there.”

Howard also expressed his opinion that he likes much of the work that the directing duo, cast and crew have done, which may signal to approach reshoots as opposed to changing things around.

Given the situation, there was only three weeks left of principal photography, which means that Howard is placed in a very delicate situation where the cast and crew are still processing the abrupt firing of Lord and Miller, whose directing style and tonal idea weren’t quite the same as Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy. Howard will work with Kennedy and screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan to figure out what needs to be fixes, and will look over a rough cut of the film and meet with the cast this week. Three weeks were left of principal photography along with five weeks of reshoots built into the schedule for later this year. Filming will resume on July 10.

It still remains to be seen whether Han Solo will still keep the previously announced May 25, 2018 release date. A lot depends on what Howard decides to cut based on what’s been shot, or simply reshoot certain sections. There’s also the question of the Director’s Guild credit should a good deal of Lord and Miller’s footage survives.

Howard has quite a close history with Lucasfilm, having starred in George Lucas’s 1973 film American Graffiti, and directing 1988’s fantasy Willow which was written by Lucas himself. Howard was also reportedly asked by Lucas in the late ’80s to direct 1999’s The Phantom Menace, but declined.

Han Solo stars Alden Ehrenreich as Han, Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian, Joonas Suotamo as Chewbacca and Woody Harrelson as Han’s mentor Beckett. Emilia Clarke, Thandie Newton, Michael K. Williams and Phoebe Waller-Bridge also star in mystery roles.

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