It pains me to say this, but the directors of LucasFilm’s upcoming spinoff film Han Solo have been let go. 21 & 22 Jump Street directors Christopher Miller and Phil Lord have abruptly exited the project, despite being only weeks away from wrapping up production.
THR has mentioned huge creative differences between Lord/Miller and producers Kathleen Kennedy and Lawrence Kasdan, who of course are Star Wars veterans.
This is a scary trend of unique artists getting the shaft while working for Disney/LucasFilm. It’s no secret that director Gareth Edwards struggled with “following orders” while making Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. There was extensive reshoots and retooling of the third act with that one, which is incredibly noticeable and alarming.
Apparently, LucasFilm is pleased with Rian Johnson‘s work on Star Wars: The Last Jedi, so at least we have that going for us.
Lord and Miller were no-doubtibly hired for their crazy brand of comedy and their ability to turn horrible ideas into cinematic gold. The LEGO Movie had no right being as fun and as exciting as it was, nor did Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs or either of the Jump Street films.
Honestly, the only reason I was excited for a Han Solo movie was for the talented filmmakers assembled and their collective cast.
The fact that both directors were fired while production was almost wrapping makes the blow all the worse. Reshoots were already scheduled, but now they’ll probably be pretty extensive.
How could Kasdan and Kennedy not know of Miller and Lord’s less-than-traditional filmmaking styles and methods? The full story mentions them clashing from the get-go and it honestly surprises me that they weren’t let go before production began.
Official statements have been released by both parties, citing creative differences as the ultimate factor.
I’m both bummed and worried. Bummed that Lord and Miller won’t get to share their vision of such an iconic character with the world and worried that LucasFilm’s tradition of hiring artists with true vision only to butcher and push them around is only going to continue.
This will lead them to hiring “guns for hire” directors like Colin Trevorrow to shoot whatever they tell him.
At least someone like J.J. Abrams had already established his brand and name enough to earn him some pull, but guys like Gareth Edwards or Lord & Miller might struggle working within the franchise system if the producers and writers aren’t open to accepting their vision or take on the material.
Why hire such talent like that in the first place?
Replacement director talks have already started up, with Ron Howard and Joe Johnston in the running, both talented journeymen that will no doubt play it safe and shoot something that falls more in line with Disney/LucasFilm’s vision.
Han Solo is still on track for its 2018 release.
Source : THR