“Anonymous Actor” Reveals Inner Workings of ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’s Troubled Production

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brian-mcgee - March 27, 2018

It was no doubt a strange—and nearly unprecedented on a film of this size—turn of events when Lucasfilm's Emperor Kathleen Kennedy fired Phil Lord and Chris Miller as directors of Solo: A Star Wars Story less than a year before the film was due in theaters. They were eventually replaced by Opie, and the film is still due out on May 25, 41 years to the day after Star Wars was released. But a lingering question was why all of this happened and what was it like to work on the film under such circumstances... until now.

In an interview with Vulture, an actor who worked on the film long enough to shoot his part twice with both sets of directors, clearly has strong opinions on why Lord and Miller were fired and replaced by Ron Howard. Take all of this with a grain of salt, as the person spoke under the condition of anonymity which means: it's either true but slanted toward that person's particular preferences or it's a false story put out by Lucasfilm to quell the anxiety over the film.

To hear our source tell it, the main difference between the co-directors’ filmmaking style and Howard’s boiled down to efficiency. Where Lord and Miller would typically demand more than 30 takes of a given scene — seemingly unsure of what they wanted other than a delivery “different” from the last — Howard got the job done in no more than two or three takes. “Phil and Chris are good directors, but they weren’t prepared for Star Wars,” says our source. “After the 25th take, the actors are looking at each other like, ‘This is getting weird.’ [Lord and Miller] seemed a bit out of control. They definitely felt the pressure; with one of these movies, there are so many people on top of you all the time. The first assistant director was really experienced and had to step in to help them direct a lot of scenes.”

Sure, it's gotta be tough making one of these gigantic machines run smoothly. Thank goodness Ron Howard has plenty of experience doing that!

And (Howard) impressed the beleaguered Solo production by working “really fast.” “When he came on, he took control and you could feel it,” the actor says. “He got respect immediately. He’s really confident. A really easy guy to work with.”

So what else is different this time around? I mean, it's not like they're just reshooting the entire film with the same script, right?

“It’s exactly the same script. They’re filming exactly the same things. There’s nothing new,” says the actor, adding: “[Lord and Miller] used whole sets. But Ron is just using parts from those sets. I guess they’re not shooting wide angle. Maybe to save money.”

And what of the rumors that Alden Ehrenreich was a terrible actor and needed an acting coach to help him be more like Harrison Ford and less like, whatever else he was playing the character as before. I mean, that can't all be true, can it?

“Trying to mimic Harrison Ford is really tough,” our source says. “Lucasfilm wanted something very specific: copying someone else. Alden’s not a bad actor — just not good enough.”

Having an on-set acting instructor may have assailed Ehrenreich’s sense of pride, but it almost immediately made an impact on his line delivery. “You could see his acting became more relaxed. He became more Harrison-like,” our source says. “The coach helped!”

Okay, it's definitely a real actor that worked on the film. It's because of how the condition of anonymity allowed him to come off as a catty bitch. Actors. They'll stab you in the back over a role. Don't trust them with anything. Ever. Seriously.

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