OK, so I wanna take a minute and clarify a few comments I made on the my ‘Solo’ (sorry, the pun is too lame and good at the same time not to use, haha) bonus edition of The Exhaust Port a few days ago. Star Wars News Net has posted an amazingly detailed article, using sources and the material printed in The Hollywood Reporter and Variety articles to shed a ton of light on the Han Solo standalone directors debacle and just where it all sits as of now. In light of that and after listening to the basic tone of my podcast, and chatting with Patrick Read Johnson, I wanted to take a minute to clarify and modify a few takes I had in the podcast.
What I still find concerning:
- As a Star Wars fan it is very concerning to me that we are essentially two-for-two in regards to drama relating to the standalone films. I didn’t understand when I posted the podcast and I don’t understand now how they make decisions to go with directors without being fully aware of what they are getting. I mean, Lord and Miller made The Lego Movie and 21 Jump Street for the maker’s sake, what did the powers that be think they were getting.
What I’m backing off of:
- Although not intended, I sounded very critical of Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy. I meant to be complimentary of her resume and experience overall, but my choice of words in regards to my opinion of her being hard to work with is ill-informed and simply speculation. Who knows, she might be hard to work with, but I have nothing to base that off of, so apologies if it came off with an asshole tone. She and her team have done an A+ job rebooting the Star Wars franchise in general, with both The Force Awakens and Rogue One being not only box office smashes, but critical successes as well – not an easy task.
- Ron Howard will do an amazing job reworking this film, and I think we are going to get Lucasfilm and screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan’s vision in the long run. Will it mean the film release is pushed back? I hope so if that’s what it takes. Ron is an amazing, A-list director and I’m stoked to have him aboard. He’s a lifelong Star Wars fan, even going to far as to write a letter defending Jake Lloyd’s performance in The Phantom Menace and the film in general, so he gets it. I also have no doubt KK will push through and ensure he gets his director’s credit with the DGA for the film, so no worries there. The big question is how much time and budget Lucasfilm is going to dedicate to reshoots, etc. to make sure the film is spot-on. They have money, this will not be an issue.
One thing that’s very interesting in all of this is that it seems that none other than actor Alden Ehrenreich was the tipping point so to speak, going to a producer and voicing his concerns that the Han Solo he was being directed to play simply wasn’t true to the iconic character we’ve known and loved for decades. This was also reported in the SWNN article, which I highly recommend reading. Here’s a quick screenshot of the section of the article for your viewing pleasure:
I personally find this very refreshing that Alden of all people had had enough. There were reports that he was being directed to portray Han in a similar fashion to Ace Ventura at times if you can believe it, so yeah…
In closing, I think Lucasfilm, Kasdan, and especially Kathleen Kennedy made 100% the correct decision here, as the film and the end product is the main objective here. Having said that, the drama queen in me can’t wait to hear more about all this as more and more details leak out!