Ron Howard Officially Directing ‘Han Solo’ Star Wars Movie

Ron Howard on the set of ‘In the Heart of the Sea’ | Warner Bros.

Two days after directors Chris Miller and Phil Lord walked away, or were apparently fired, Lucasfilm and Disney have chosen their replacement.

Two-time Oscar winner Ron Howard has officially been chosen to take the helm of the troubled Han Solo Star Wars spinoff. THR initially broke the news; Lucasfilm has since made it official.

“At Lucasfilm, we believe the highest goal of each film is to delight, carrying forward the spirit of the saga that George Lucas began forty years ago,” said Kathleen Kennedy, president of Lucasfilm, in a statement.

“With that in mind, we’re thrilled to announce that Ron Howard will step in to direct the untitled Han Solo film. We have a wonderful script, an incredible cast and crew, and the absolute commitment to make a great movie. Filming will resume the 10th of July.”

The announcement that Miller and Lord were no longer directing the still-untitled spinoff was a surprise to say the least. Cameras had been rolling since January, there was only around three and a half weeks left of the main shoot, and a reported five weeks’ worth of reshoots planned as well.

A few reports suggest that creative clashes regarding tone and overall style placed an unmovable barrier between the 21 Jump Street directors and both writer/exec producer Lawrence Kasdan and Kennedy. There’s also the matter of Kennedy’s apparently very tight leash on the overall production.

Either way, now we have Howard at the helm. The acclaimed director – known for films such as Apollo 13The Da Vinci CodeFrost/NixonRush, the Best Picture-winning A Beautiful Mind, and Lucasfilm’s Willow – will be entering a shaken-up production that’s been underway for sometime; you can imagine that’s no smooth transition.

The director took to Twitter following the announcement:

The Han Solo movie, set to star Alden Ehrenreich as Han Solo and Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian, with a cast that includes Woody Harrelson, Emilia Clarke, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Thandie Newton and Michael Kenneth Williams, is still scheduled for U.S. release on May 25, 2018.

Let’s hope the waters now settle and Howard can deliver.

Image credit: Lucasfilm