Solo: A Star Wars Story

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Solo: A Star Wars Story
Teaser title card
Directed by
Produced by
Screenplay by
Based on Characters
by George Lucas
Music by John Powell
Cinematography Bradford Young
Edited by
Distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Release date
  • May 25, 2018 (2018-05-25) (United States)
Country United States
Language English

Solo: A Star Wars Story, or simply Solo, is an upcoming American space Western film centered on Han Solo, a character from the Star Wars franchise. The film is being produced by Lucasfilm from a screenplay by Lawrence and Jon Kasdan, and will be distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. The film will be the second Star Wars anthology film, following the 2016 film Rogue One. A stand-alone installment, set prior to the events of the original 1977 film, it explores the adventures of a young Han Solo and Chewbacca, including meeting Lando Calrissian. The film stars Alden Ehrenreich as Solo, alongside Woody Harrelson, Emilia Clarke, Donald Glover, Thandie Newton, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Joonas Suotamo and Paul Bettany.

Principal photography began in January 2017 at Pinewood Studios, under the direction of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. The pair left the project in June 2017 after reportedly being fired over "creative differences" with Lucasfilm, and Ron Howard took over directing duties. The film is scheduled to be released on May 25, 2018. It will be released in RealD 3D and IMAX 3D.


Themed as a space Western,[8] the film is centered on a young Han Solo and his adventures with his Wookiee partner Chewbacca, including their encounter with Lando Calrissian.[6][1]


Additionally, screenwriter Jon Kasdan and first assistant director Toby Hefferman portray Tag Greenley and Bink Otauna, respectively, two characters that first appeared in the Star Wars comics published by Dark Horse Comics.[20] Ian Kenny,[21] Warwick Davis[22] and Clint Howard are also cast in undisclosed roles.[23]



In February 2013, Disney CEO Bob Iger confirmed the development of two Star Wars standalone films, each individually written by Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg.[24] Shortly after, it was reported that Disney was working on two films featuring Han Solo and Boba Fett.[25] Disney CFO Jay Rasulo described the standalone films as origin stories.[26] Kathleen Kennedy explained that the standalone films would not crossover with the films of the sequel trilogy, stating, "George [Lucas] was so clear as to how that works. The canon that he created was the Star Wars saga. Right now, Episode VII falls within that canon. The spin-off movies, or we may come up with some other way to call those films, they exist within that vast universe that he created. There is no attempt being made to carry characters (from the standalone films) in and out of the saga episodes. Consequently, from the creative standpoint, it's a roadmap that George made pretty clear."[27] In April 2015, Lucasfilm and Kennedy announced that the standalone films would be referred to as the Star Wars Anthology series.[28][29]

In July 2015, Lucasfilm announced that an Anthology film, focusing "on how [a] young Han Solo became the smuggler, thief, and scoundrel whom Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi first encountered in the cantina at Mos Eisley",[30] would be released on May 25, 2018. The project would be directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller from a script by Lawrence Kasdan and Jon Kasdan. Kennedy would serve as a producer on the film, with Lawrence Kasdan and Jason McGatlin executive producers;[1] Allison Shearmur and Simon Emanuel also produce.[6] The Han Solo project was separate from a film that was originally being developed by Josh Trank, which was pushed back to an unconfirmed date.[31] Solo's friend, the Wookiee, Chewbacca, would also appear in the film.[32][33] In May 2016, Lawrence Kasdan stated that filming would start in January 2017.[34]

On October 17, 2017, director Ron Howard confirmed the wrap on production, and officially announced the title would be Solo: A Star Wars Story.[35]


Donald Glover portrays Lando Calrissian in the film.

In January 2016, a shortlist of actors was revealed for the role of young Han Solo, including Miles Teller, Ansel Elgort, Dave Franco, Jack Reynor, Scott Eastwood, Logan Lerman, Emory Cohen and Blake Jenner.[36] In March 2016, it was reported that Alden Ehrenreich, Reynor and Taron Egerton were on a shortlist of actors considered for the young Han Solo role.[37] In May 2016, Ehrenreich was reported to have been cast as the young Han Solo,[9] and was revealed in the role at Star Wars Celebration: Celebration Europe III two months later.[10] Miller called casting the role one of "the hardest casting challenges of all time" adding they "saw over 3,000 people for the part".[38]

By the following October, Tessa Thompson, Naomi Scott, Zoë Kravitz, Emilia Clarke, Kiersey Clemons, Jessica Henwick and Adria Arjona were being considered for the female lead,[39][40] while Donald Glover was being considered to play a young Lando Calrissian.[39] Glover was confirmed for Calrissian shortly after,[15] with Clarke cast as the female lead the following month.[13][40]

In early January 2017, Woody Harrelson was revealed to be in negotiations to portray Han Solo's mentor,[41] and was confirmed to be appearing in the film shortly after.[11] Christian Bale had previously been in discussions for the role.[42] A subsequent interview with Harrelson bolstered speculation that he may be specifically playing Star Wars Legends character Garris Shrike,[43][44] but Harrelson revealed the character's name as Beckett in March 2017.[12] In February 2017, Phoebe Waller-Bridge joined the cast in an undisclosed role, said to be "a CGI-driven performance" similar to Alan Tudyk in Rogue One as the droid K-2SO.[16] Additionally, it was reported that Thandie Newton was in negotiations to star in the film.[45] Waller-Bridge and Newton were confirmed as being cast by the end of February, alongside the announcement that Joonas Suotamo would appear as Chewbacca, reprising the role from Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Star Wars: The Last Jedi that he shared with original Chewbacca actor Peter Mayhew.[6] Michael K. Williams entered talks to join the film in early March 2017,[46] and was confirmed shortly after,[17] portraying a half-human, half-animal creature.[18] By the end of the month, Ian Kenny had joined the cast.[21] Warwick Davis was confirmed as part of the cast by the end of July 2017.[22]


Filming began on January 30, 2017,[47] at Pinewood Studios,[38] under the working title Star Wars: Red Cup.[47] Lucasfilm announced that principal photography started on February 20, 2017.[6] Bradford Young serves as the cinematographer for the film.[48] In May 2017, filming moved to the Canary Islands, and Lucasfilm replaced editor Chris Dickens with Pietro Scalia. Lucasfilm also hired an acting coach for Ehrenreich, as they were unhappy with his performance up to that point.[7]

On June 20, 2017, citing "creative differences", Lucasfilm and Lord and Miller jointly announced their intent to part ways, with a new director "to be announced soon".[2][49] It was reported that the directors were fired after Kennedy and Kasdan disagreed with their shooting style;[3][50] Lord and Miller believed they were hired to make a comedy film, while Lucasfilm was looking for the duo to add "a comedic touch" to the space fantasy. Lucasfilm also felt that the directors were encouraging too much improvisation from the actors, which was believed to be "shifting the story off-course" from the Kasdans' script.[51] To appease Kasdan, who was unhappy with scenes not being filmed "word for word... Lord and Miller would do several takes exactly as written and then shoot additional takes."[7] Lord and Miller refused to compromise on the way to approach certain scenes, such as filming a scene from fewer angles than what Lucasfilm was expecting reducing the options available in editing, leading to a strained relationship with Lucasfilm.[51][7] The duo were also unhappy when Lawrence Kasdan was brought to the London set, feeling he became a "shadow director".[7] The decision to remove Lord and Miller from the project was made after a short hiatus in filming taken to review the footage. Additional weeks of filming have been planned.[3]

It was reported that Ron Howard was a front runner to step in as director, with Joe Johnston also being considered. Lawrence Kasdan was also mentioned as a possible director, though Directors Guild of America rules state that a replacement for a director may not be someone already involved in the production.[50][52] Two days later, it was announced that Howard would take over directing duties for the remaining three-and-a-half weeks of scheduled principal photography as well as the scheduled five weeks of reshoots.[4][53] On being hired, Howard wrote, "I'm beyond grateful to add my voice to the Star Wars Universe... I hope to honor the great work already done & help deliver on the promise of a Han Solo film."[54] Howard was expected to arrive in London on June 26 to complete filming.[7] During the film's reshoots, actor Michael K. Williams was unable to return to the production, due to a schedule conflict with filming The Red Sea Diving Resort, resulting in his part being cut. Williams stated the reshoots for his character were "to match the new direction which the producers wanted Ron to carry the film in", and that he would not have been available again until November 2017, and the production did not want to wait for his availability in order to still be able to release in May 2018.[18] On October 17, 2017, Howard announced that principal photography had been completed; he also revealed the official title of the film as Solo: A Star Wars Story.[55]


In July 2017, John Powell was announced as the main composer of the film's score.[56] Longtime Star Wars composer John Williams will contribute the main theme for the film.[57]


Solo: A Star Wars Story is scheduled to be released on May 25, 2018, the 41st anniversary of Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope in which Harrison Ford first appeared as Han Solo. Despite the firing of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, Lucasfilm has maintained that the film is on schedule for its intended release date.[1][2]


  1. ^ Lord and Miller, the film's original directors,[1] were fired from the film in June 2017 after over four-and-a-half months of shooting, about three-quarters through principal photography.[2][3][4] Howard took over directing duties for the remaining three-and-a-half weeks of scheduled principal photography and five weeks of reshoots.[4] It is unknown what the director credit on the final film will be.[5]
  2. ^ Dickens, the film's original editor,[6] was replaced by Scalia in May 2017 during principal photography.[7]


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  2. ^ a b c "A Message from Lucasfilm Regarding the Untitled Han Solo Film". Lucasfilm. June 20, 2017. Retrieved June 21, 2017. 
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External links

  • Solo: A Star Wars Story on IMDb
  • Solo: A Star Wars Story on Wookieepedia, a Star Wars wiki
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