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The Han Solo movie went through a huge creative shakeup at the end of June when directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller exited the Star Wars Anthology spinoff due to creative differences. Ron Howard was quickly hired to fill the directorial chair, and from what he's teased on social media in the weeks since, production has continued smoothly. When Howard boarded the Han Solo movie, he added his brother Clint to the cast, but now the new director has revealed a new addition to the Han Solo movie: Marvel Cinematic Universe star Paul Bettany.
As an added bonus for Force Friday II, Ron Howard posted the above picture of him with Paul Bettany on the set of the Han Solo movie, confirming minutes later that Bettany is not simply visiting the production, but is the spinoff's newest actor. Howard didn't provide any clues about who Bethany's character is, Slashfilm reports that he is taking over the role that was initially played by Michael K. Williams. Williams was forced to drop out of the Han Solo movie when scheduling conflicts prevented him from returning for more filming. The Boardwalk Empire star previously described his character as a "half animal, half human" who is connected to Emilia Clarke's character, Kira. With Bettany now filling Williams' spot, the character has been turned into a full human, but he will have the same name and motivations.
Ron Howard and Paul Bettany previously worked together on A Beautiful Mind and The Da Vinci Code, but it's safe to say that their third outing will be the biggest one yet. Given that the Han Solo movie will show how the eponymous protagonist became a notorious smuggler years before joining the Rebellion, as well as Howard mentioning the Outer Rim is becoming wilder with Bettany's addition, one can surmise that the actor's character will be a fellow criminal, though it remains to be seen whether he'll be an ally or enemy to Han.
Paul Bettany's other notable credits include A Knight's Tale, Dogville and the Discovery Channel TV series Manhunt: Unabomber, but over the last decade he's been lending his acting talents to the Marvel Cinematic Universe in two forms. From 2008 to 2015, he voiced Iron Man's helpful and sarcastic A.I. J.A.R.V.I.S, and 2015's _Avengers: Age of Ultro_n saw Bettany transitioning into The Vision, android superhero extraordinaire. Bettany reprised Vision last year in Captain America: Civil War, and his character will be among the many participants in Avengers: Infinity War, which is coming out a few weeks before the Han Solo movie. Next May is going to be especially fun for the actor.
We'll see what the Han Solo movie has in store for Paul Bethany's character when it's released in theaters on May 25, 2018.