Why Phil Lord And Chris Miller May Have Exited The Han Solo Movie

The Empire Strikes Back Han Solo reprimand

Being trusted to direct a movie is still a pretty sacred duty in Hollywood, doubly so when it's involving a legendary franchise like that of the Star Wars legacy. So if you step on the toes that are vital to keeping that legacy in play, bad things are going to happen. Reportedly, this is the lesson that Phil Lord and Chris Miller learned just today, as the supposed reason behind their departure from the Han Solo spinoff may have been due to the fact that they angered two really important people: co-writer Lawrence Kasdan and head of Lucasfilm Ltd., Kathleen Kennedy.

Just as the news involving Phil Lord and Chris Miller's parting with the untitled Han Solo movie has been making the rounds, not only has a potential list of replacements been allegedly discovered, but so has the alleged reason for this whole mess in the first place. Apparently, if the sources close to the Star Wars spinoff's production are to be trusted, the directors behind The LEGO Movie and the hit TV show The Last Man On Earth have been butting heads with Kasdan, as their looser, more improvisational approach to the material goes against his attitude that the source material is king. Variety says that Kathleen Kennedy backed Lawrence Kasdan thanks to his experience, but on top of her loyalty comes reports that she too wasn't so pleased with the way that the young directors were approaching things, either.

This obviously isn't the first time we've heard about trouble in paradise with a filmmaker's vision supposedly going off brand for the Star Wars universe. It was around this time last year everyone was wringing their hands about how Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was going to go through reshoots to help the film better match up with the look and feel of A New Hope. Fortunately, in the case of those supposedly upsetting reports, we still got a pretty kickass movie out of director Gareth Edwards. However, if we really wanted to equate this situation to something more relevant, we need look no further than to Josh Trank.

Once riding high on the wave of accolades for his directorial debut, Chronicle, Trank landed not only the director's chair to what would have been the second Star Wars spin-off, he also managed to get the gig of directing Fantastic Four's 2015 reboot. Between the drama that occurred on that film with Trank and his minders at Fox having consistent differences, and the reports of odd behavior occurring on the set, Josh Trank wanted to do something a little more "under the radar," and supposedly left the project on his own terms.

The moral of the story that has been spun for us seems pretty fair: young talent is always welcome in the Star Wars galaxy. However, there's a fine line between creative control and guided stewardship over an entry in a fictional universe, and the line is pretty finely drawn between the two. Of course, there's still a chance this story might not be wholly accurate, and more reports may pop up in the coming days. Still, we do know the untitled Star Wars spin-off is set for release on May 25th, 2018, and we'll probably hear about a new director at any time between now and the D23 Expo this summer. So keep it tuned here to CinemaBlend, as we'll be covering all the developments that fall into place.

Mike Reyes
Senior Movies Contributor

Mike Reyes is the Senior Movie Contributor at CinemaBlend, though that title’s more of a guideline really. Passionate about entertainment since grade school, the movies have always held a special place in his life, which explains his current occupation. Mike graduated from Drew University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science, but swore off of running for public office a long time ago. Mike's expertise ranges from James Bond to everything Alita, making for a brilliantly eclectic resume. He fights for the user.