– by Joseph Jammer Medina

In case you haven’t heard, directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller have stepped down as directors the Han Solo film. Sure, we’ve seen directors depart projects all the time, but it’s usually some time before the actual production of the film starts, not when they still have weeks of shooting left. 

So what was the reason for their departure? Creative differences, for sure, but THR goes much deeper into the why. But before we get into the why, it’s important to note that, according to the outlet, Lord and Miller didn’t just depart from the film. They were fired.

Here’s what the outlet had to say:

“Sources say that the style and vision of Lord and Miller clashed with Lawrence Kasdan, the legendary screenwriter behind the classics Empire Strikes Back and Raiders of the Lost Ark and who also wrote, with his son, Jon Kasdan, the script for the Han Solo standalone set (for now) to be released in 2018.”

So what was the main cause of friction? Well, as directors with a comedy background, they tend to have a lot of improv, which is in stark contrast with what Kasdan likes — a strict adherence to the words he wrote on the page. This wasn’t just a sticking point that slowly rose during shooting, either. Apparently, it was a near day one problem. 

There was also a difference in understanding the actual character of Han Solo. From the sound of the report, it sounds like Lord and Miller were aiming for a more wise-cracking, funny Han Solo, whereas Kasdan was likely in favor of a more sarcastic and selfish one.

Despite these differences, Lord and Miller had hoped that they’d be able to work through it.

Sadly, that was not the case. Kennedy backed Kasdan, and had to let the duo go. There are conflicting reports of whether or not Lord and Miller saw this coming. One source says they were blindsided, while another disputes the claim.

So what’s to become of the film that is currently in production? Well, it’s going on hiatus until they’re able to find a replacement director. Once they find a replacement, they’ll need to go through what Lord and Miller have shot, re-edit, and then figure out the best direction to go from there.

Possible candidates include Ron Howard (Apollo 13), Joe Johnston (Captain America: The First Avenger), and strangely enough, Lawrence Kasdan himself (The Big Chill). The latter name is an interesting one because he certainly seems to be the reason behind the firing. If this report is to be believed, then I’d personally like to see what Kasdan has to offer. After all, it wouldn’t be his first rodeo.

On the whole, I have to say I’m surprised it took this long for Lucasfilm to realize their creative differences with Lord and Miller. Given their track record, it seems like they should have known the type of movie they were in for.

What do you think of all this? Was Lucasfilm right to fire Lord and Miller? Was it understandable that this came so late in the game? Let us know your thoughts down below!

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Joseph Jammer Medina is an author, podcaster, and editor-in-chief of LRM. A graduate of Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Television, Jammer's always had a craving for stories. From movies, television, and web content to books, anime, and manga, he's always been something of a story junkie.