The unofficially titled Han Solo: A Star Wars Story is picking up steam, even though there are two Star Wars movies yet to release ahead of it. The 2018 release will follow Rogue One: A Star Wars Story as a standalone film set in the Star Wars universe but outside the "Skywalker Saga," the episodic films that continue with 2017's Star Wars: Episode VIII. While confusing to some more casual fans, if it has "Star Wars Story" in the title, it can exist in any time and won't feature the Skywalkers heavily, if at all. If it has an Episode number, you're continuing that tale of Anakin, Luke, and now Kylo Ren and possibly Rey in the Skywalker clan. Got it?
As Han Solo continues to take shape, with the casting of Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian joining Alden Ehrenreich as Han under the Phil Lord and Chris Miller directing duo, more information about the film will start to leak out. Lord and Miller have already relocated to London, with the film's studio shoot planned at Pinewood Studios there, and are casting up to start principal photography soon. That includes crew hiring, as well, including adding cinematographer Bradford Young. His most recent film, Arrival, is hitting theaters next month, and his work on Selma and A Most Violent Year garnered great praise. The cinematographer in turn praises Lord and Miller and their surprising approach to Han Solo.
"Here's the thing about Phil Lord and Chris Miller: don't let their track record fool you. Don't put those guys in a box because they have a vision, they know exactly what they want," Young told Collider. "They have no hidden agenda, but they do have an agenda; they have a way of seeing that's very special, and their collaboration is genuinely unique."
He said he respects the directors as filmmakers and they "come from the same school" of filmmaking that he does. He also promises that their take on the film, despite being known for comedy, will go against some fan expectations.
"These cats are subversive, don't let it fool you," he said with a laugh. "They are prepared to say exactly what they wanna say and it's complex, it's layered, it's smart, it's visual, it's dramatic, it's funny, it's uneasy, it's unexpected. These cats are—I'm honored to have them in the list of directors I've worked with, that's for sure."
Young says the directors have a "unique vision" for Han Solo, and that the production company has been very supportive of them following their own take.
"Nobody at Lucasfilm is asking us to betray that, they're saying 'We're in full support of what you do and we wanna make sure that we're able to help you do it in the best way.' It's gonna feel like a Star Wars film, but we're definitely gonna break some rules, and we're encouraged to do that," he said. "Visually, narratively that's a good mandate. They really are about, from what I've seen so far, supporting up and coming artists, artists who have a strong vision and voice and perspective, and they really wanna permeate the films with those kinds of voices."
The Star Wars Story films look to offer a unique take on the galaxy, starting with Gareth Edwards' direction of Rogue One. Even in the episodic films, the sequel trilogy of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: Episode VIII, and Star Wars: Episode IX all hired disparate directors with their own unique styles in J.J. Abrams, Rian Johnson, and Colin Trevorrow, respectively. It's clear the Lucasfilm, and 4-years-yesterday owner Disney, higher-ups want these movies to each feel like Star Wars, but also feel like a unique work from a unique directing team.
Han Solo: A Star Wars Story is planned for a 2018 release.