If you’re anxious about Solo: A Star Wars Story — since Lucasfilm replaced original directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller with Ron Howard, who then reshot portions of the film — this might put you at ease.
When press covering FX’s Atlanta panel for the Television Critics Association asked Donald Glover how the Star Wars change-up affected the production, the actor replied, “Not a ton actually. Not a lot at all, at least not for me.”
“I think we were never faced with anything like that and [Howard] did a good job of coming in and didn’t want us to change what we were doing at all,” Glover said, according to /Film. “He wanted us to be comfortable with our vision.”
In Solo, focusing on a younger, scrappier version of Han Solo, Glover portrays a younger incarnation of Lando Calrissian, who was played by Billy Dee Williams in the original Star Wars trilogy. “It’s weird. I didn’t have a lot of stress on me. … This is the first time in a long time, I was just acting,” the actor and Atlanta creator explained. “Most of the time, I have to write or do music. This time I woke up and got to be somebody else and the stress wasn’t there for me.”
Westworld‘s Thandie Newton, playing an undisclosed role in Solo, said something similar to EW. “Apart from the initial shock and feeling bad for [Lord and Miller] not being able to finish their work, their work is everywhere in it,” she said. “Ninety percent of my stuff is with them. And it certainly wasn’t about, ‘Oh we have to start again and do it all over.’”
She added, “As far as I’m concerned what’s on screen, in the end, is going to be an amazing collaboration.”
Solo: A Star Wars Story features Alden Ehrenreich as Han, Joonas Suotamo as Chewbacca, Woody Harrelson as a mentor figure, Phoebe Waller-Bridge as an undisclosed motion-capture character, and other mystery roles played by Emilia Clarke, Paul Bettany, and Warwick Davis.
Sources close to the situation told EW before the change-up that Lord and Miller’s vision for what was best for the film clashed with Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy. “They thought they were brought on to make a Phil and Chris movie. … Sometimes they just thought the actors could do it differently,” one source divulged.
Despite assurances from Glover and Newton, there were some changes made to Solo that we now know about.
Michael K. Williams (Boardwalk Empire) originally had a role in the film, but the actor said his “kickass” half-human, half-animal character was cut since the reshoots clashed with his commitment to another project. Howard’s brother, Clint, was also confirmed for a role.
Glover added during TCA that there’s a shot Howard pulled off that hasn’t been done before in the Star Wars saga.
“I remember going on set one of the first times, he was like, ‘Yeah, I want to follow you onto the Millennium Falcon and do this thing,’” he recalled. “I was like, ‘I don’t think I’ve ever seen the outside go into the inside.’ He’s like, ‘Yeah, no one’s ever done that shot.’ As a fan I was like yeah, I was really excited. I know there’s been a lot of talk in the press about this movie but for me anyway, it was a dream and also it looks really cool to me.”
Solo: A Star Wars Story will hit theaters on May 25, 2018.