By Craig Martin
When Christopher Miller was an intern at Lucasfilm, he was asked (and accepted) to step into an Imperial Stormtrooper costume for an added scene of one of George Lucas’ Special Edition “Star Wars” releases. Now, it seems that Miller will be able to force lowly interns and starving actors to do the same as he and directorial partner Phil Lord, the duo behind “The Lego Movie” and the surprise mega hit “Jump Street” films, are tackling one of the “Star Wars” anthology projects.
The filmmaker team, who write, direct and produce, are stepping up to helm a movie that will focus on a young Han Solo, according to sources from Lucasfilm and Walt Disney Studios.
According to the same reports, Lawrence Kasdan, writer of “The Empire Strikes Back,” and Jon Kasdan are both writing the script with the project’s directors. The film is currently set for a May 25, 2018 release.
The new film is not the same as the one that was to have been directed by Josh Trank. Trank parted ways with a project in May amid a cloud of issues stemming from his “Fantastic Four” shoot. That film, rumored to be an origin story of the intergalactic bounty hunter Boba Fett, is still searching for a director.
Unclear is how their commitment to the upcoming Han Solo origin story will impact Lord and Miller’s already very busy schedule. The duo became a hot property following their witty take on the buddy cop genre with “21 Jump Street” and hotter still with 2014’s “Lego Movie,” which included a spectrum of geek icons from Batman to a myriad of Star Wars characters.
First, the duo were set to develop a “Flash” feature for Warners as a directing vehicle, but now that is likely off the table. As is a third “Jump Street” movie. However, they could stay on as writers or producers on those projects.
They were also developing an animated Spider-Man project for Sony, writing and producing, but since they were not intending to direct it, that could be less impacted.
The pair also may remain involved in the immensely successful “Lego” franchise they helped launch. Whether one has heard of Christopher Miller and Phil Lord, they may soon be the most prolific pair of directors working in Hollywood.