The Team Behind Solo Addressed How It Would Have Been Different If Lord and Miller Directed It

Chewie, Beckett, Qi’ra and Han look to the skies in Solo.
Chewie, Beckett, Qi’ra and Han look to the skies in Solo.
Photo: Disney

Though Phil Lord and Chris Miller were fired from Solo: A Star Wars Story midway through production, their fingerprints can still be felt on the movie.


This according to co-writers Jon and Lawrence Kasdan, who spoke with io9 at the film’s press junket. We asked how Solo may have been different if Lord and Miller had completed the film instead of Ron Howard, and the writers explained that it’s hard to say because everyone’s contributions are in there.

“This movie, like all movies, has evolved with each creative person that has come into it,” Jon Kasdan said. “So we wrote two drafts. Then we worked with Chris and Phil and spent intense time with them. We wrote another draft. Then we went to London and we wrote another draft. Then Ron came in, had no time to prep, but contributed a ton of ideas, and did another draft. And what I think is true is that, beyond the drama, what we ended up with, ultimately, was the riches of these incredibly creative guys, all of their instincts. All of their comedy impulses survive in the movie.”

Ultimately, though, while Lord and Miller get executive producer credit, Solo is directed by Ron Howard, and the film is brimming with his decisions and style.

“We’ve got Ron’s soulfulness, his sort of laser focus on what the narrative is which, I think, is what he brings to the table. He’s ruthless in the [edit] and he’s ruthless about ‘How do we tell the story? What is the story here?’” Jon Kasdan said.

“And he’s gifted at mise en scene,” Lawrence Kasdan added. “When two characters are alone in a room, the way you shoot them makes a big impact on what the themes of the movie are.”

Illustration for article titled The Team Behind Solo Addressed How It Would Have Been Different If Lord and Miller Directed It

Howard himself addressed the issue at the film’s press conference as well.

“I did come into [the film] late and there was a lot of work Phil and Chris had done,” Howard said. “Within that there were a lot of things that were really strong and were already working, there things that hadn’t been done yet and other scenes where I was given the opportunity to experiment with and explore.”


However, despite everything that went down with Lord, Miller, and eventually Howard, the Kasdans, who have been working on Solo for longer than anyone, think the end result is better because of all of it.

“The truth is what happened with Chris and Phil was really painful and something that no one involved literally no one wants to happen,” Jon Kasdan said. “But the end result is that five writer/director/filmmakers touched this story, put their handprints on it and I think it’s richer for it.”


Solo: A Star Wars Story opens May 25. We’ll have much more soon.

Entertainment Reporter. NYU Cinema Studies Alum. Formerly Premiere, EW, Us Weekly, and /Film. AP Award-Winning Film Critic & CCA member. Loves Star Wars, posters, Legos, and often all three at once.



Okay, but clearly there was a reason they brought in someone like Howard to replace Lord and Miller, and that’s going to become evident in the movie most likely. I wish Kasdan had the balls to actually say what went wrong and why they went in a new direction. Obviously they don’t want any bad press before the movie, but I won’t actually be interested in the director drama 5 years from now when it makes it into some sort of Star Wars behind the scenes material.