Phil Lord and Christopher Miller Exit HAN SOLO
Disney and Lucasfilm’s second Star Wars standalone, starring a young Han Solo, has lost directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller.
“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, and we’ve decided to part ways. A new director will be announced soon,” said Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy in a statement released Tuesday night.
“Unfortunately, our vision and process weren’t aligned with our partners on this project,” reads a statement from the directing duo. “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.”
The 21 Jump Street and The Lego Movie directors came aboard the project two years ago in July 2015, and have been shooting the untitled Han Solo spinoff in London since February. According to sources close to the production, several weeks remain on the shoot with reshoots already scheduled for later this summer. The filmmaker that will be behind the camera on those reshoots has yet to be revealed.
As exclusively revealed by Variety, the filmmakers were fired after clashing with Kennedy.
“Miller and Lord were stunned to find that they were not being granted freedom to run the production in the manner that they were accustomed to,” Variety reports. “They balked at Kennedy’s tight control on the set.”
“It was a culture clash from day one,” a source told Variety. “She didn’t even like the way they folded their socks.” Noting that Lord and Miller “weren’t given the leeway to do what they had to do,” the source disclosed that the pair, who “were supposedly hired for their vision and distinctive brand of filmmaking,” clashed with the Lucasfilm head, who “did not approve of their shooting style and process of interacting with actors and crew,” reads the report.
Lord and Miller also found themselves in conflict with co-writer Lawrence Kasdan, who previously scripted The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, and The Force Awakens. “Kathy, her team and Larry Kasdan have been doing it their way for a very long time. They know how the cheese is made and that’s how they want it made,” said the source. “It became a very polarizing set.”
Some insiders, according to Variety, describe Kennedy as being “ultimately unwilling to empower [filmmakers] to make their own creative decisions.”
Lucasfilm’s first Star Wars standalone, Rogue One, famously brought in Tony Gilroy (The Bourne Legacy) to rewrite and handle reshoots. The Han Solo movie stars Alden Ehrenreich as the titular space rogue, with Donald Glover, Emilia Clarke, and Woody Harrelson co-starring. The film’s announced release date of May 25th, 2018 currently remains unchanged.