George Lucas Gave Ron Howard Solid Advice On How To Deal With Star Wars Fans

Han in Solo: A Star Wars Story

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Star Wars is arguably the most popular film franchise of all time, as George Lucas' colorful world has entertained audiences for decades. As such, there are entire generations of hardcore fans, each feeling a personal connection to the galaxy far, far away. This can help the franchise break box office records, although backlash can also be intense. And it turns out that Lucas gave director Ron Howard some valuable advice about the fans when he was working on Solo: A Star Wars Story.

Ron Howard came in to complete Solo, after Phil Lord and Chris Miller were suddenly fired from blockbuster in the midst of principal photography. This was obviously a daunting task, but luckily the acclaimed director has a relationship with Star Wars visionary George Lucas. As Howard recently explained:

George Lucas is a mentor, a tremendous friend. He warned me, and he said, ‘Hey look, it’s for the fans, and yet you have to have the courage to hear them but tell the story you wanna tell.’ So he’s all for the galaxy expanding and experimenting. That’s what he prefers the most. He gets most excited about those that wanna push the boundaries of what a Star Wars movie or TV show [can be].

Well, that is some solid advice. Because while Star Wars movies are ultimately made for the fans, George Lucas still thinks it should be a director-driven franchise. And as such, Ron Howard needed to take ownership of his role.

George Lucas' advice to Ron Howard were revealed when the latter director recently spoke to Collider. Ron Howard has had a long and successful career as a director, but jumping into the Star Wars franchise presented its own set of challenges. Especially when another set of filmmakers had developed and starting shooting the blockbuster.

Star Wars fans can re-watch the franchise on Disney+. You can use this link for a free 7-day trial to the streaming service.

The first six Star Wars movies were all helmed by George Lucas, with the filmmaker able to have full creative direction over the space opera's many twists and turns. But when Lucasfilm was acquired by Disney, he relinquished control over the sequel trilogy. But he was kind enough to speak with friend Ron Howard about the potential dangers of working with such beloved material.

Solo: A Star Wars Story ultimately failed to perform at the box office, and marks the Star Wars franchise's first financial flop. While it seemed to set a potential sequel/franchise involving Jabba The Hutt and Darth Maul, Lucasfilm hasn't revealed any plans to produce another standalone film like Solo or Rogue One. Ron Howard delivered and helped the project arrive on time, although it failed to become a sensation like its predecessors.

It should be interesting to see how the Star Wars franchise's life on the big screen continues in the wake of The Rise of Skywalker. The Skywalker Saga has come to an end, with a few potential projects in the works-- including one by The Last Jedi's Rian Johnson. In the meantime, the galaxy far, far away will continue to expand through Disney+'s live-action series like The Mandalorian and Ewan McGregor's upcoming Obi-Wan series.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is still in theaters now, and you can watch The Mandalorian on Disney+. Be sure to check out our 2020 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.