As May 25 creeps ever closer, the drama behind the troubled production of Solo: A Star Wars Story finally reaches its end. Once the film is in theaters, we'll finally be able to tell if Ron Howard was able to save the project after Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy fired Phil Lord and Chris Miller in the middle of shooting last summer.
According to a new report from The Wall Street Journal, 70 percent of the finished film is Howard's doing. Shortly after Howard's hiring, early reports were placing that figure somewhere in the ballpark of 80 percent, but it seems Lord and Miller (who will receive executive producing credits) were able to leave around 30 percent of their mark on the upcoming Star Wars anthology movie. Howard, writes the report, made quick work of the project, shooting certain scenes in a few hours, compared to the entire days that Lord and Miller were devoting to them.
The official reason the directing duo were asked to leave the project was over creative differences and a highly improvisational style that required Lord and Miller to go off script to shoot scenes dozens of different ways. This exhausted those on the set and irked Lawrence Kasdan, who co-wrote the screenplay with his son, Jonathan. Finally, Lord and Miller were asked to leave by Kennedy, who, based on The Wall Street Journal, is notorious for second-guessing her decisions, which leads to stalemates and unresolved issues with directors. In addition to Solo, she also replaced Colin Trevorrow with J.J. Abrams for Star Wars Episode IX.
Having been a longtime producing partner of Steven Spielberg and her husband Frank Marshall, Kennedy is no stranger to massive Hollywood productions and hits like Indiana Jones, E.T., and Jurassic Park. Those who have worked with her on these productions, however, say that Kennedy is "more of a skilled manager than creative mastermind."
Solo is set to premiere at the Cannes film festival on May 15 before its wider release on May 25.