This has got to be one of the craziest production stories I’ve heard in a while. Just a few days ago, Christopher Miller and Phil Lord – The Lego Movie and 21 Jump Street filmmakers who seemed like an exciting fit for a project that elicits more groans than excitement (a Han Solo prequel movie…ehhh…), were let go by LucasFilm with only 3 weeks left on the schedule for principal photography.
Why? According to Borys Kit at THR, it’s because they butted heads with long-time Star Wars scribe, Lawrence Kasdan, about the presentation of the title character (they wanted to go with a funnier and more improvised tone, he didn’t, basically). Apparently these differences couldn’t be worked out and the directing duo was sent packing by Lucasfilm head Kathleen Kennedy.
Of course, the show must go on, as the studio has announced that Ron Howard will take over filming duties on the still untitled prequel film. Howard, who has a long-time association with George Lucas, is seen as someone who can be a calming influence on a set that’s been rattled by the abrupt removal. Howard himself hasn’t produced a big hit in a quite a while, with both Inferno and In The Heart Of The Sea both misfiring with audiences, but his critical success in the past decade (which includes an Oscar nod for Frost/Nixon) should leave Star Wars fans with some hope that he’ll be the steady hand this very shaky project needs right now.
As for Lord & Miller, well, according to The Wrap, they recently met with DC Films to discuss The Flash during a recent production hiatus on the Star Wars film…we’ll see if that goes anywhere at all.