Earlier this week saw the departure of Phil Lord and Chris Miller from the director’s chair of Han Solo, and the arrival of Oscar-winning helmer Ron Howard. To call the situation unexpected would be a vast understatement, but now that things have settled down a bit, it sounds like the production is ready to move forward in July.
As expected when replacing the helmers in such a high profile way, Howard has been a bit on the quiet side. He took to Twitter to express his general excitement with the project, but as far as public statements go, he didn’t even say anything in the official announcement from Lucasfilm.
However, while appearing at the Palais stage at Cannes Lions (via Deadline), he touched upon his new gig, and the experience he’s had with the franchise since its beginnings.
“I’ve been around the Star Wars universe from the beginning. When I was being directed by George Lucas on American Graffiti in 1972, we were standing out in front of Mel’s Drive-In in San Francisco where we were shooting and I said, ‘Do you know what you think your next film might be?’ And he said, ‘Yeah, I want to do a science fiction movie, but a really fun one like Flash Gordon with the effects of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001.’ I thought, ‘That sounds like a kind of crazy idea.'”
He went on to say that he and his wife were "so moved by the movie. It was all the things you dream you’re going to experience in the movies.”
“So many people involved with the Star Wars franchise are friends, so it’s gratifying to be able to lend my voice to the universe — coming in when it’s already been in production and there is a great amount of work done.”
No questions there. There’s still a lot of work to be done. While the actual scenes from Lord and Miller are, by all accounts, pretty strong, there is a reported tone inconsistency that is only evident when the scenes are cut together. It’ll be interesting to see if the three-plus weeks left of filming, plus the five weeks of scheduled reshoots will be enough to salvage everything, and bring the Han Solo we know and love to the forefront.
We wouldn’t be surprised if they needed a few extra weeks of reshoots. Let’s just hope it all turns out okay.
The untitled Han Solo film hits theaters on May 25, 2018.
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