Ron Howard has been busy directing the currently untitled Han Solo movie, a role he took over when the previous directors, Chris Miller and Phil Lord, were ousted by the House of Mouse. Luckily for us, Howard took the time to tweet a farewell to cast member Paul Bettany on his last day on set.
Howard wrote, “Had to say goodbye to my friend @Paul_Bettany today. Another terrific performance from a world class talent.”
We don’t know Bettany’s character’s name. However, we do know that Bettany came on board to replace actor Michael K. Williams. Although Williams had filmed his part under Miller and Lord, he was unavailable for reshoots. Williams had accepted a significant part in the upcoming The Red Sea Diving Resort, and his schedule would not permit a return to the Star Wars universe.
Originally, Williams’ character was half-human/half-animal, which implies either extensive prosthetics or a CGI element. Bettany will be playing his version of the character as a human.
On Bettany’s first day of filming, Howard tweeted, “The Outer Rim just got a little bit wilder #PaulBettany #ForceFriday”
What to note about these two images:
- Bettany is dressed similarly to smuggler Han Solo.
- In both the first and last days of filming, Bettany and Howard are on the same set, a location that looks like a small museum or perhaps a private collection.
- As Twitter was quick to note … Is that Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer under glass in the most recent image?
All told, it took a little over two weeks for Bettany to film his role. But considering how enthusiastic Howard is about his friend — they had worked together on A Beautiful Mind and The Da Vinci Code — I’m certain his role will be small yet significant.