In a realm of major tentpole blockbusters, changing directors are rather common place. We have seen them running rampant in films like Thor: The Dark World, The Flash and Wonder Woman. This is the first time in history that Lucasfilm has changed directors while actually in production. People will note that Josh Trank was changed after The Fantastic Four fiasco, but production had never begun. Phil Lord and Chris Miller are being replaced in the Han Solo spinoff movie.
The film has been in production since late January and is reportedly three weeks away from completing production with reshoots slated for later in the summer. While Lucasfilm is citing “creative differences” for their split, it is not usually this late in the game for a director change to happen. Normally, we have seen changes in the editing process when the studio brings in someone to re-edit a film to make it a more suitable film. Just look at Alien 3 and American History X for some striking opposite examples.
Lucasfilm released an official statement through StarWars.com:
The untitled Han Solo film will move forward with a directorial change.
“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 Kathleen Kennedy, president of Lucasfilm.
“Unfortunately, our vision and process weren’t aligned with our partners on this project. 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,” stated Phil Lord and Christopher Miller.
The untitled Han Solo film remains scheduled for a May 2018 release.
We will almost never find out what the reason for the change may be. Although, it will have the internet buzzing until May of next year to see how this version will come out and the internet loves to wonder about the film that almost was.