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Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018)

Discussion in 'Movies' started by SamT, Feb 21, 2017.

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  1. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Lead Actor
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    That is fine. I just wanted to know the sources for the surety of your statements regarding the actions going on on the set of the film.
     
  2. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Lead Actor
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    I wonder how many of the problems stemmed from conflicts about who was really in charge on that film, Lord and Miller or Kasdan?
     
  3. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    I would say Kasdan was the crybaby on Solo. 100%
     
  4. Message #1844 of 1862 May 26, 2019
    Last edited: May 26, 2019
    Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    I don't think it's really an issue of someone being a crybaby.

    I think it's an issue where, let's say for example, the script lays out that there will be a battle scene. The script has it, the production design makes their designs based on the script, and the second unit and special effects groups start designing and shooting/creating their elements of the battle based on that script. For the day of shooting, actors and background players are cast, costumes are designed, sets are built. Then, the directors show up, and rather than shooting the lines of dialogue that will motivate the battle scene and give context to the action, they start improvising a different scenario where a character makes a joke and avoids the battle.

    Now, there's nothing wrong with that if everyone's on the same page about what's going on and everyone is an agreement to abandon the planned shoot in favor of something else. There's also nothing wrong with shooting what you were hired to shoot that day, and then, if time permits, doing a little improvisation after getting the footage that the production needs.

    But it doesn't work if the second unit and special effects guys have already contributed their part, if you've got actors and crew members standing around waiting to shoot, and the directors are in a corner refusing to shoot the lines that will make all of those disparate elements fit together. Or if you've got a hundred crew members who show up to work and sit there for two days doing nothing because the directors aren't ready to shoot, or the directors have changed what they're going to shoot without taking the appropriate steps to reschedule the production resources called for on those days.

    Whether the directors were capable of writing or improvising a script that was better than Kasdan's is entirely irrelevant here. They were hired to film Kasdan's script, and while the rest of the production was off doing just that, the directors took it upon themselves to film things that were not in the script instead of the things that were. So when it was time to start assembling the material shot by the second unit and the material created by the special effects teams with the production material that the directors shot, none of it fit together because the directors were making a different movie from the one that was on the page. That's the sort of thing you can get away with if you're in control of the entire production - Stanley Kubrick could throw away the script pages for "2001: A Space Odyssey" because he was the writer, producer, director and designer of special effects, and had final say. But the directors of Solo were not hired with carte blanche to control the production. It was a director-for-hire gig and they didn't direct the material they were hired to direct.

    (To be clear, my example above is just that - an example of what happens when a production isn't on the same page. It's not a literal example from the Solo set, although Variety and Hollywood Reporter both reported low morale on the set with crew members showing up and then sitting around and not shooting anything because of the directors being disorganized or working on material that was not on the production schedule.)
     
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  5. Message #1845 of 1862 May 26, 2019
    Last edited: May 26, 2019
    Jake Lipson

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    It's funny you should say that, because they were hired by Fox to direct a film adaptation of Andy Weir's novel Artemis, which was acquired originally by Fox -- i.e., Fox acquired the book and then hired them to direct it; it's not something that they independently brought to Fox. Of course, this all happened in September 2017, prior to the Disney-Fox merger.

    https://deadline.com/2017/09/phil-lord-christopher-miller-artemis-the-martian-author-andy-weir-the-lego-movie-21-jump-street-fox-1202177263/

    It will be interesting to see if Fox will continue with Lord and Miller on Artemis now that it is owned by Disney. While it was Fox's prerogative to hire Lord and Miller for Artemis while Fox was its own studio, I would imagine Alan Horn is taking a close look at that project now. If he doesn't want to have them make it for Disney-Fox, he could choose to let Lord and Miller take it to another studio (Horn recently allowed Clint Eastwood to take a film he had been developing for Fox over to Warner Bros.), or if Horn wants to keep Artemis but not Lord and Miller, he could look at getting another filmmaker in to replace them. This time, if they are going to be replaced, it would surely be before filming begins.

    It's worth noting that since the merger closed, Lord and Miller have left their previous overall deal at 20th Century Fox TV and signed a new TV deal with Sony, which includes a Spider-Verse TV series.

    As far as why it took so long for Kennedy to fire them, I suspect that everything Josh wrote is correct. I also suspect she might have tried other methods first. We know that Gareth Edwards was effectively dismissed from Rogue One without actually being fired from it, and Tony Gilroy was brought in to quietly supervise reshoots as an open secret when Edwards proved incapable of finishing the movie on his own. I wonder if Kennedy might have been trying to do that again here before realizing that Lord and Miller would not be so easily sidelined from it as Edwards was.

    She knew that firing the directors in such a public way would cause a media circus and lots of bad press for the movie, which it absolutely did, and was probably looking to avoid that if at all possible. The fact that she ended up doing it anyway speaks volumes about what she thought of the footage they were giving her. To go with Sam's wording, she probably did "taste their food" that wasn't what she ordered and she didn't like it.
     
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  6. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    I find it amusing that people are trying to analyze this past situation from afar and then determine what's going to happen in the future.
     
  7. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    You're not wrong, but I'm going to join in anyway.:)

    I think it was also the case that she'd recently fired Josh Trank off the Boba Fett movie, and brought in Tony Gilroy to clean up Gareth Edwards's mess on Rogue One. She was aware that Lucasfilm was getting a reputation under her leadership, so she probably tried as hard as she possibly could to make the situation with Lord and Miller work.

    Lawrence Kasdan wrote two of the original three Star Wars movies, and he was coming off of co-writing The Force Awakens, the highest grossing Star Wars movie of all time. He's probably second only to George Lucas when it comes to claiming authorship over Star Wars. IMO, he earned a certain degree of deference.

    And while I have problems with Solo conceptually, I don't think the Kasdans' screenplay is one of them. Structurally, it's the most capable of the Disney-era Star Wars films. And Kasdan still knows how to write Han Solo.
     
  8. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    I respect your opinion Adam but disagree wholeheartedly with your statement.

    I could have forgiven Solo’s existence if I thought the screenplay was competent. I thought it was a complete mess that missed all the beats that make the Star Wars films, and Han Solo in particular, so memorable.

    I didn’t hate the film and I think Ron Howard did a fine job stepping in, but I put almost all the blame of its failure on Kasdan and its screenplay
     
  9. Tommy R

    Tommy R Supporting Actor

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    That is fair. Even though I enjoyed it a lot, I feel like it was JUST missing something, not sure what, but it just felt very “by the numbers” if you know what I mean. I think it was pretty close great, but short on some fundamental level.
     
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  10. Osato

    Osato Producer

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    I know I’m in the minority, but I enjoyed solo.

    It was good not great.

    I’ve held off picking it up mainly due to the fact it’s in Netflix. Plus now there is the sw UHd box set rumor for possibly next year..
     
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  11. Message #1851 of 1862 May 26, 2019
    Last edited: May 26, 2019
    Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    I don’t think your in the minority at all.

    I think most that actually saw Solo enjoyed it. I’ve warmed up to it a bit since seeing it in the theater and own the 4K and 3D versions.
     
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  12. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Lead Actor

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    That's ridiculous. If I order a copy of "Abbey Road" from Amazon but they send me "Trout Mask Replica" instead, I should keep it to "mix it up"? :rolleyes:

    If Lord/Miller had been hired and given free rein, then right on - they can "mix it up". But if they were hired to make the film Lucasfilm wanted - the one they would've agreed to make - then it's absurd to feel that a studio that pays big bucks should just accept whatever Lord/Miller give them...
     
  13. Wayne_j

    Wayne_j Cinematographer

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    I'm just upset that the scene that got the film green lit was my least favorite scene in the movie and judging by many comments I have seen I am hardly alone in this.

    The scene is the one where some Imperial recruiter gives Han the last name of 'Solo' because he is alone. I just found it so stupid that I don't know how anyone would think it would work in concept.
     
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  14. Jake Lipson

    Jake Lipson Lead Actor

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    I completely agree with your above post, @Wayne_j. For me, the majority of the film is pleasant enough -- not a tremendously memorable time, but I was reasonably engaged and invested while watching it. There are two scenes that I think are just terrible; one is the namingscene, and the other is the surprise cameo at the end. Those two things do not work at all and their presence significantly mars the overall film.
     
  15. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    I really liked the naming scene. There was something right to me about the legend of Han Solo being an accumulation of experiences, some extraordinary and some -- like that one -- rather happenstance.

    On the other hand, the surprise cameo was a bridge too far for me. You really have to earn a resurrection like that, and having that occur in the ancillary media isn't good enough for me. It'd be like if Phil Coulson just showed up in the film side of the MCU again, without any explanation of how he's alive after the events of The Avengers. If you watch "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.", you have that answer but if you're a moviegoer only it would feel cheap and unnecessary.
     
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  16. Wayne_j

    Wayne_j Cinematographer

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    As a fan of The Clone Wars and Rebels I liked the return of Maul. Since those shows are officially canon I like that it was a two way street between them and the movies.
     
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  17. dpippel

    dpippel HTF Premium Member
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    Funny that this discussion has come up once again. ;) My thoughts on Solo haven't changed. It was a fairly boring film with a lazy script, and Ehrenreich is no Harrison Ford. Why it exists, other than as a blatant attempt at profiteering on the recent Star Wars train, is beyond me.
     
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  18. Wayne_j

    Wayne_j Cinematographer

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    I do agree that Maul suddenly being there must have been confusing to general audiences and probably should have been set up better.
     
  19. Message #1859 of 1862 May 27, 2019
    Last edited: May 27, 2019
    Jake Lipson

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    I don't have a problem with the idea that the events of the animated shows are considered canon.

    But I do think that if you buy a ticket to a movie, you deserve a complete story. It's reasonable for one of the movies to expect you to have seen other movies (for example, it's completely reasonable for The Last Jedi to expect that its viewers have seen The Force Awakens because its job is to build on the foundations of that movie.) However, it's not reasonable for the movies, which know they will be seen by a massive global audience, to expect that everyone in that audience has seen a relatively more niche Disney Channel series which is intended for more dedicated fans. If they want to use characters from the show, or reference plot from it, that's fine, but there should be an organic way to provide an explanation within the film so that those who don't follow every nook and cranny of the other media aren't confused.

    While I was watching Solo, I expected that the "bigger bad" that Dryden Vos was working for would end up being Jabba. That would have made sense within Han's world and would have made things interesting when he inevitably turned up in the sequel. (I'm sure the intention behind the cameo was to set up a sequel we now won't get.) Instead, the Maul thing came out of nowhere, not only because movie audiences don't know he's alive, but because it "forces" a Force user into Solo. The Han we meet in A New Hope clearly does not believe in the Force, so the idea that his ex-girlfriend is going to get involved with a powerful Force user and he wouldn't know about it at all seems a little far-fetched. (This assumes that the plan was for the entire principal cast of Solo whose characters were alive at the end of it to appear in a sequel, had it been a success; a second film would have had to pick up that story with Qi'ra and Maul, and would have almost surely involved her crossing paths with Han again.) I don't watch Clone Wars or Rebels but I hang out enough online that I had heard that Maul was brought back in them, but I'm probably in the minority among non-viewers. If you're just looking at the films in and of themselves, there's no attempt made to have that moment work for you, and that's wrong.

    This also applies to Marvel, by the way; it's exciting that the new Disney+ series are going to be able to connect to the movies and use the cast from them. However, whenever the characters from those series move back to the big screen again, the storytelling done with them in their next film appearance will need to make sense whether or not you've got a Disney+ subscription. It's a tough needle to thread, because one of the reasons that the shows are exciting is the ability they provide Marvel to do further character development on those who would not be the title characters of their own movie franchise, and we want to see that development matter with the character going forward. But movie ticketbuyers have a right to understand the story without having to make all these other investments like Disney+. Hopefully Marvel manages to navigate that better than Lucasfilm did with Solo and Maul.
     
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  20. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    What can I say, I like the film and thought it was underrated by critics and moviegoers alike.
     
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