Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, the writing/directing team behind The LEGO Movie, 21/22 Jump Street, and The Last Man on Earth, are the latest filmmakers to join New New Star Wars, as the directors of an “anthology” film about a young Han Solo. Josh Trank was originally supposed to direct, but he got canned earlier this year, and Lord & Miller are his replacements. The anthologies are meant to be one-off spin-offs based in the same universe, but not necessarily attached to the main storyline about Jedis. The first in the lineup is Star Wars Anthology: Rogue One, due in 2016 and fronted by Felicity Jones, about the theft of the Death Star plans (Jones isn’t playing Princess Leia, but a Rebel soldier). The untitled Han Solo movie will follow on May 25, 2018, and is hopefully not about sand.
I really like Lord & Miller for this. Han Solo is a lighter character in the world of Star Wars—let’s be honest, he’s kind of a scumbag—and his origin story won’t be all Jedis and the Force. He’s a space pirate, so there’s a lot of room for colorful characters and adventure without the weight that comes with Skywalkers and lightsabers. Lord & Miller are good at directing action and they’re GREAT at comedy, so it’s a good fit. It does, however, jeopardize their involvement with Warner Brothers’ Flash movie, which they’re slated to direct. That movie will star Ezra Miller and is set up in the same frame as this Star Wars project, so they’re probably going to have to drop out of The Flash.
Now for the best part—casting roulette. A friend suggested Kingsman star Taron Egerton, and I like that, but my personal favorite is Garrett Hedlund. Can’t you see it? He’s got the swagger and the smirk and the same kind of classic handsomeness as Harrison Ford without looking like they’re trying to get a Ford clone. This is a high-profile role and it’s sure to be competitive, and we’ll probably hear the names of every actor under 35 not already attached to a franchise before it’s over. And you know the Young Harrison Ford guy from Age of Adaline is anxiously waiting by his phone.