Following yesterday’s announcement that Ron Howard would be replacing Phil Lord and Christopher Miller as the sole director on the Untitled Han Solo Star Wars Story, the Academy-award winner has opened up on his chance to join the Star Wars universe and direct the spinoff.
Howard tweeted yesterday evening to share his excitement to help deliver the Han Solo spinoff but the director also appeared on stage at Cannes Lions on Friday and offered a few more thoughts on the project when being interviewed by Founder and CEO of British ad company WPP Martin Sorrell.
Reiterating the sentiment in his tweets, Howard went on to say he’s “been a fan forever,” before he added, “It’s gratifying to lend my voice to the Star Wars universe now.”
Howard himself is a longtime friend of Star Wars creator George Lucas. He first worked with the Lucasfilm founder on American Graffiti during his rise from child stardom. Lucas had actually approached Howard to direct Star Wars: The Phantom Menace which he ultimately turned down the awesome responsibility of helming the start of Anakin Skywalkers journey.
But when Howard was approached to board the Han Solo spinoff in what is likely an effort to maintain the film’s scheduled May 2018 release date, it wasn’t something he could pay on.
“I’ve been around the Star Wars universe from the beginning,” the director said as he went on to add that the idea for Star Wars sounded “crazy” when Lucas first told him about it.
Howard also went on to recall the first time he saw Star Wars in which he waited for two hours in line at the theater. “We left almost speechless, and I said, ‘Do you want to see it again? And we got in line and waited another 90 minutes to see it twice the same day.”
The Oscar winner also commented on the state of the franchise, led by his friend Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy as well as the project itself which was nearly in the can after almost six months of shooting. The film has another three weeks of principal photography on the books with five weeks of additional photography planned but this could surely change after Howard reviews a rough cut in order to determine what the project has and what changes will be necessary.
“So many people involved in the ‘Star Wars’ franchise are friends,” Howard said per Variety. “It’s already been in production, and there’s a lot of really great work there.”
The Untitled Han Solo Star Wars Story has been written by Lawrence Kasdan and son Jon Kasdan. The film stars Alden Ehrenreich as the young Han Solo along with Joonas Suotomo as Chewbacca and Donald Glover as the young Lando Calrissian. The cast also includes Thandie Newton, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Michael K. Williams, and Ian Kenny.
The Untitled Han Solo Star Wars Story is currently slated for release on May 25, 2018.
Stay tuned to Heroic Hollywood for the latest news on the future of the Star Wars franchise as we learn it.