The dust has pretty much settled on Solo: A Star Wars Story, although history may show what extent swapping directors really affected the film, and in turn Lucasfilm's decisions with spinoffs moving forward. In the long history of Hollywood filmmaking, there have actually been a surprisingly long line of big ticket films that have executed the same sort of directorial switcharoo to varying results. In fact, there are some cases where it worked to the advantage of the film! If you thought that kicking directors off of pictures was a new thing, then prepare a brief history of 12 films that started with one director, but ended up heading into the home stretch with another one. Take a look.
The Wizard Of Oz
Original Director: Richard Thorpe
Creative differences are a primary, and frequent, cause of directors being dismissed off of pictures in the history of film. But The Wizard of Oz had some interesting replacements, as its original director, Richard Thorpe, was accused of trying to rush through the film's production schedule - setting off a chain of replacements that would make the film into the picture it eventually became. In order, the film had George Kukor as a directing consultant until he had to leave for Gone With The Wind, followed by Victor Fleming's time on the film, which saw a majority of the production completed. Bringing up the rear of the final phases of production was King Vidor, who filmed the bookending sequences in Kansas. Interesting enough, this wasn't the first time Victor Fleming would replace George Kukor, as his next assignment was a doozy.
Gone With The Wind
Original Director: George Kukor
As if Victor Fleming wasn't busy enough delivering The Wizard of Oz in 1939, he would actually go on to leave that production, once again replacing George Kukor, as the director of a small scale indie picture best known as Gone With The Wind. However, he wouldn't see that film through to the end of its production schedule, as he was fired three weeks into filming. Now, depending on who you talk to, either some shady history with Clark Gable or a disagreement with legendary producer David O. Selznick when it came to the film's pacing lead to Kukor's dismissal. So in came Victor Fleming to finish all but two weeks of the film's production - which came down to a case of exhaustion on Fleming's part. We guess that happens when you deliver two landmark pictures of such scope in one year.