On Tuesday, LucasFilm announced that the untitled “Star Wars” Han Solo spinoff has parted ways with directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. The film remains slated for release in May of 2018.
Lord and Miller cited “creative differences” as the reason to step aside. However, the film had only a few weeks left of its principal photography.
Creative differences got them fired
Phil Lord and Chris Miller’s reputation helped the writing and directing duo land one of the most coveted gigs in Hollywood; A chance to call the shots on a “Star Wars” film. The announcement was made on July 2015 and the duo pretty much put their stamp on a galaxy far away. Until Tuesday when they announced their departure from the project.
“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,” said Lord and Miller in a statement.
The announcement comes after months of conflict with LucasFilm president Kathleen Kennedy, and co-writer and executive producer Lawrence Kasdan.
It is unclear if and how Lord and Miller will be credited on the movie. Hollywood insiders said their forced departure, in the middle of filming, was a highly unusual situation. The decision comes as the Han Solo film still has several weeks left to shoot. It’s been reported that the directing duo didn’t leave the production voluntarily but were fired by Lucas Film.
Lord and Miller said on Feb. 20 as part of the start of production announcement, “Watching such inspired people from all over the world, with such unique voices, come together for the sole purpose of making art, is nothing short of miraculous.”
They went on saying how proud and thankful they were for their work, “We can’t think of anything funny to say, because we just feel really moved, and really lucky.”
Searching for a Director to fill in
LucasFilm president, Kathleen Kennedy, also released a statement on Tuesday.
“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,” Then she added, “and we’ve decided to part ways. A new director will be announced soon.” Sources say, Ron Howard is in talks to take over the film, but there’s no deal yet.
Originally, the two directors were hired to infuse the “Star Wars” universe with their vision and distinctive brand. However, Kennedy didn’t approve of their shooting style and process along the way.
On top of that, the duo not only had differences with Kennedy but also with executive producer Kasdan. Kasban’s been an integral creative part of several “Star Wars” movie, dating back tot he 1980 “The Empire Strikes Back.”
The legendary “Star Wars” duo questioned many of the pair’s directing choices.
Kennedy had her own ideas about how the film should be shot. In an interview with Variety last year, she said she wanted the film to have “…a heist or Western type feel,” adding, “We’ve talked about [Frederic] Remington and those primary colors that are used in his paintings defining the look and feel of the film.”
But we’re still getting the Han Solo spinoff
The Han Solo film will focus on the Millennium Falcon pilot’s early days as a smuggler.
The script is written by Lawrence Kasdan and his son Jon Kasdan. The story focuses on how the young Han Solo became the smuggler, thief, and scoundrel whom Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi first encountered in “A New Hope.”
Lawrence Kasdan co-wrote other franchise entries “The Empire Strikes Back,” “Return of the Jedi,” and “The Force Awakens.”
Disney CEO Bob Iger revealed a bit more about the movie. He said that the movie would cover Solo’s life from when he was 18 to 24. Revealing how he came to own the Millennium Falcon as well as how he met his Wookie sidekick, Chewbacca.
Disney and Lucasfilm are releasing “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” on Dec. 15 with Rian Johnson directing from his own script in a story that will follow the events of 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” They are also in pre-production on “Star Wars: Episode IX,” to be directed by Colin Trevorrow and written by Trevorrow and Derek Connolly, to be released on May 24, 2019.
Disney bought Lucasfilm for $4 billion in October, 2012, and announced at that point that it would be releasing a trilogy of films in 2015, 2017 and 2019. Iger first announced plans for spinoffs in early 2013.
Source: LA Times