Tonight, Solo: A Star Wars Story hits theaters in sneak previews.
The behind-the-scenes drama of the movie is as well known to Star Wars fans as is its cast of onscreen characters: original directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller were let go over “creative differences,” and Lucasfilm tapped Ron Howard to take their place.
The Oscar winner had never been directly involved in making any of the films set in the universe his longtime friend George Lucas created. However, Howard told ABC Radio that taking on Solo — and, as it turns out, having to re-shoot a majority of the film — was a different challenge.
“When this opportunity came to me I felt, ‘Well, this is not a sequel. This is sort of developing an aspect using the using the framework, using the galaxy, using the expectations. But this is young Han Solo. This is this is this is a new deal!’ And creatively for me, that felt really exciting.”
Solo: A Star Wars Story centers on the younger days of young scoundrel Han Solo, played by Alden Ehrenreich. Because the character of Han, and also Lando Calrissian, are so well known, it required a delicate balance for Ehrenreich to play it. The same went for Donald Glover, taking over for Billy Dee Williams as Han’s frenemy, Lando Calrissian.
“I actually spoke to Harrison Ford early in the process,” Howard explains, “and he said, ‘I hope he’s not going to try to…copy…a performance. He’s a terrific young actor, and I hope he’ll just create from the sort of essence and spirit of the character.’ And that’s exactly what Alden did…I think both he and Donald really rocked it!”
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