In a very detailed and lengthy interview with Alden Ehrenreich, Phil Lord, Christopher Miller and Ron Howard – Esquire magazine look at Ehrenreich’s career and his suitability to take the character of Han Solo back to the big screen.
Here are some extracts:
Lord & Miller on Ehrenreich:
That quality is more or less what the film’s original directors, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (who were replaced during filming by Ron Howard; more on that in a bit), were looking for when they set out to cast the role. “The outlaw thing is an act. We wanted someone who presented as a pirate but had a big heart underneath,” Lord tells me via email. “An impression of Harrison Ford would have felt like an extended Saturday Night Live sketch,” Miller adds. “We wanted someone who could evoke the spirit of the iconic performance we all remember while bringing something new and fresh. We talked a little bit about how Chris Pine, playing Captain Kirk, didn’t do a Shatner voice, and brought his own spin to the character while still evoking the vibe of the character. We felt Alden did the same with Han Solo.”
Ehrenreich on Lord & Miller:
Of Lord and Miller, Ehrenreich says, “They had a different style than Ron in terms of the way we were working.” He’s not sure what their Solo would have been like. He liked the script. He liked them as directors. He can’t say whether they were really taking an Apatovian riffs-over-script approach. “From the first screen test on, we played around with it a lot. We tried a lot of different things, rethinking behind the scenes,” he says. “That was yielding a different movie than the other factions wanted. I knew what I was doing, but in terms of what that adds up to, you’re so in the dark as an actor. You don’t know what it’s shaping up to be, how they’re editing it, so it’s kind of impossible without having seen those things to know what the difference [of opinion] was, or exactly what created those differences.”
Ehrenreich on Howard:
“Everybody’s hackles are raised a bit, and Ron had this ability to come in and deal with morale and get everybody enthusiastic about, A, what we’d already shot, because I think his feeling was that a lot of what we’d already done was really good, and, B, the direction for the next piece of it. He knew how to navigate a tricky situation, and almost from the first or second day everybody pretty quickly recharged and got excited again about the movie.” (Lord and Miller ended up with executive-producer credits on the film. Everyone involved is cagey about how much of their material ended up in the final cut.)
Ehrenreich also talks about rumours he got Lord and Miller fired, having an acting coach on set, meeting Harrison Ford and signing up for potential sequels, in an interview that is quite a read. Check it out at the link below and pick up the magazine when it hits newsstands in May.