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Bob Iger: Han Solo film to span six years (and about that name thing…)

Disney CEO Bob Iger dropped a couple of things about the two Star Wars films in production – and those beyond. (The ever-vague “starting talks.”)

He was most detailed on the Han Solo film. It will span 6 years – Alden Ehrenreich’s Han from the ages of 18 to 24 – and deal with him meeting Chewbacca and “finding” the Millennium Falcon. WSJ reporter Ben Fritz tweeted about Han “finding his name,” which a lot of folks are jumping on. I’m a little more hesitant – it’s not designated as a direct quote, and the meaning could easily be making his name. So don’t place any flags in your theories yet!

For The Last Jedi, he said they won’t change the film due to Carrie Fisher’s death. “Her performance remains as it is in VIII. In Rogue One, we had some digital character. We are not doing that with Carrie.” He also promised that Mark Hamill will do “a lot of talking.”

Earlier, Iger announced he would remain as Disney’s CEO through at least July 2019.

Principal photography begins on Han Solo standalone, release date is still May

StarWars.com has annouced that principal photography has begin on the Han Solo standalone, along with confirming rumored cast members Thandie Newton and Phoebe Waller-Bridge. It’s also the first time they’ve mentioned the release date in quite a while – and surprisingly, it’s still May 25, 2018.

If it does indeed remain May, this would be our first non-December release since Disney bought the franchise, and could signal a permanent move back to spring for Episode IX and beyond. The May release date will put Han just on the heels of Episode VII, The Last Jedi, which is out December 15, 2017.

The film stars Alden Ehrenreich as Han Solo, Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian and Joonas Suotamo as Chewbacca along with Woody Harrelson and Emilia Clarke. Phil Lord and Christopher Miller are directing, from a script by Lawrence and Jon Kasdan.

Han Solo standalone begins filming

With a tweet from co-director Chris Miller captioned “Han shot first,” we learn that the Han Solo standalone has begun shooting. The slate says ‘Red Cup,’ the film’s shooting title. (Solo… Get it?)

The movie stars Alden Ehrenreich as Han and Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian, plus Emilia Clarke and Woody Harrelson in yet-unknown roles. Posts like these from directors are usually followed by a StarWars.com announcement which may reveal further info (like, perhaps, a new release date?) so we’ll keep any eye out.

Hey, doubters: Let’s give the Han Solo movie a chance

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Well, of course the Han Solo movie is rumored to be about Han winning the Millennium Falcon from Lando Calrissian. Of course. It’s only the most iconic Han and Lando story, the bare outline direct from The Empire Strikes Back.

That said, the rumor does come from a tweet by The Hollywood Reporter’s Borys Kit, who claims to have heard it from “a couple of sources” – though not, apparently, enough for an actual story. Still, it would be bigger news if the film didn’t involve the Falcon.

Now, we’re all a little (a lot, truth be told) sick of people complaining about how this film is going to be “predictable” or “boring.” About how people would rather have an Obi-wan movie, or whatever. (No, you’re not the first person to say it. You’re not even the thousandth.) And this rumor isn’t going to help matters, I’m sure. But the film is in pre-production. It has two key roles cast – Han and Lando – with a third that probably isn’t far behind. (Not to mention Chewbacca is probably locked in, as we know Ehrenrich tested with either Peter Mayhew or Joonas Suotamo.)

han-lord-miller-falconMost importantly, It also has a pair of directors who are best known for taking “horrible” ideas and actually making great films out of them. If you somehow managed to miss Phil Lord and Christopher Miller’s The LEGO Movie or 21 Jump Street remake, please give them a try. And remember Lawrence Kasdan? He co-wrote the thing. These are not a bunch of random dudes off the street making a fan film. They, and everyone else at Lucasfilm, have a clear concept of the character and the film – check out those Celebration Europe clips again.

What do we, the audience, have? Hints and rumors and speculation – not the most solid ground for judgement.

I’m not going to discount the possibility that the movie could still turn out so-so. Hell, I’m still a little wary about the whole spinoff concept myself.

Fact is, this movie is happening. You don’t have to like it, but that’s not going to change at this point. But it’s far, far too soon to write it off. Give Han Solo a chance, just like you’re going to give Rogue One a chance. Hopefully, they both manage to surprise us.

Report: Tessa Thompson, Zoe Kravitz among actresses testing for Han Solo standalone

Variety reports today that three actresses have tested for the young Han Solo spinoff. Tessa Thompson (Creed), Zoe Kravitz (Mad Max: Fury Road) and Naomi Scott (the upcoming Power Rangers) have all tested in London for the film’s female lead, they say.

Both Thompson and Kravitz are familiar faces who’ve have been around for a bit. I remember Thompson from her turn on Veronica Mars, but she’s recently got a lot of buzz with roles in Creed, Selma, and the upcoming Thor: Ragnarok. Kravitz has a heavy genre resume in addition to Mad Max, with roles in X-Men: First Class, the Divergent films and the upcoming Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them trilogy.

Naomi ScottScott isn’t quite as well known, but she was in Fox’s 2011 time-travel dinosaur drama Terra Nova and The Martian before landing the role of the Pink Ranger in 2017’s Power Rangers.

Variety also addresses the rumor about Donald Glover and the Lando Calrissian role, but there’s apparently a “second round of tests” in the offing. Until now, Glover is the only name that’s been publicly linked to the role, though The Hollywood Reporter now says that O’Shea Jackson Jr. (Straight Outta Compton) and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (Netflix’s The Get Down) are also finalists.

Whoever wins the role(s) will be playing against Alden Ehrenreich’s Han Solo. Directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller, the untitled film is currently scheduled for a May 2018 release.

We’re gonna need another scoundrel: Young Han movie seeks a Lando?

Lando, Han and the Falcon in ROTJ

The young Han Solo movie is casting for a “Chance” – aka Lando Calrissian, The Wrap reports today. With Chewbacca and (probably) the Millennium Falcon on board, it seems likely that we could be getting the tale of how Han won the ship from Lando in the first place.

UPDATE: According to Birth Movies Death, Donald Glover (Community, The Martian) is the first choice for the role.

Like Han, these are gonna be tough shoes to fill. We first met Lando, as played by Billy Dee Williams, in The Empire Strikes Back. (Empire screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan penned the script to the new film with his son Jon.) Williams has reprised the role recently on Rebels.

In less rumory news, co-director Chris Miller shared on Twitter a picture of him and Philip Lord on the Falcon set. (Presumably Episode VIII’s.) We do know they auditioned Alden Ehrenreich and other finalists for the role of Han on the Falcon set.

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Rumor: Alden Ehrenreich signed for 3 films

alden-ehrenreich-swce16The New York Daily News today reports that future Han Solo Alden Ehrenreich is signed for “at least” three films. With the Han movie supposed to be a standalone, this raises a few questions. But we should also note that multi-picture deals are fairly common among large franchises like Star Wars.

I doubt, for instance, that there are any solid plans for an actual Han-focused trilogy. But what if the third (or fourth, or fifth…) standalone turns out to be about, say, a young Lando Calrissian? It makes sense to sign your young Han actor now – just in case.

Video: The Star Wars Show chats with Alden Ehrenreich, more on Rogue One’s Space Monkey


The latest Star Wars Show recaps Celebration, gives us details about Space Monkey, and interviews Han Solo 2.0, Alden Ehrenreich.

StarWars.com is posting a ton of Celebration videos on their Youtube, including the full panels from Rebels, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, the Fetts and more. Check ’em all out.

SWCE: Alden Ehrenreich confirmed as young Han Solo

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No Episode VIII title* out of the Future Filmmakers panel at Celebration Europe, but they did confirm Alden Ehrenreich as the young Han Solo and bring him out on stage. He was the first person to audition (out of 3000 people!) and won the role over 6 months. Directs Christopher Miller and Phil Lord have only just moved to London for pre-production, and they expect to start shooting in early 2017.

* Because there is no title yet.

Earlier, Kathleen Kennedy said Episode VIII director Rian Johnson “moves the camera as well as Steven Spielberg.” We learned that Johnson spent about six weeks with Lucasfilm before even starting in on the script.

The panel winded down with surprise appearances from John Boyega, Mark Hamill, and Carrie Fisher. (Plus Gary and Millie.) It looked fun, but there was nothing really earth-shattering revealed. Check out the StarWars.com liveblog for details.

Below the cut, videos from the panel, and the interviews afterward!

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