The untitled Han Solo movie has suffered another blow. Ron Howard has been doing his best to get things back on track ever since directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller were fired from the movie just weeks before production was scheduled to end. That means that a lot had to be shuffled around and, unfortunately, Michael K. Williams, one of the best actors who was cast in the movie, has been cut out entirely.
The actor revealed that his part in the young Han Solo movie has been cut out while speaking with Deadline. Because they were going to need him for about a month of reshoots, and because of his obligations on his series Hap and Leonard, he simply couldn't make things work. So Ron Howard and the brass at Lucasfilm decided to cut him out instead. Here's what he had to say about it.
"When Ron Howard got hired to finish out the film, there were some reshoot issues that needed to be done in regards to my character, in order for it to match the new direction which the producers wanted Ron to carry the film in. And that would have required me on a plane a month ago to London, to Pinewood, to do reshoots. But I'm here, on location in Africa. It's scheduling. I'm not going to be back on the market until the end of November after [his SundanceTV series] Hap and Leonard, and for them to wait that long for me, that would have pushed back the release date, which I believe is in May 2018. They wanted me now; I couldn't go. So they had to clip-clip-clip."
Not much was known about Michael K. Williams' part in the Han Solo movie, but he revealed to Deadline that he would have played a half-human, half-animal in the upcoming Star Wars spin-off. Elaborating a bit, he said, "we created a kick-ass character, in my opinion. I'm proud of it." He was reportedly playing the villain. Sadly, we may never get to see it, but Williams said that he had a great experience creating the character while working with Phil Lord and Chris Miller.
"I felt great about what I created with the directors that I worked with. It is what it is."
Ron Howard has done a fine job of using his social media in order to smooth things over with Star Wars fans since taking over as director on the Han Solo movie, but this is sure to be an unpopular bit of news. Michael K. Williams' work in shows like The Wire and The Night Of have helped cement him as a top talent working in Hollywood today. He really could have added something to the Star Wars universe here. Though, he didn't rule out the possibility of getting another shot at it down the line.
"I don't think that me not being in the Star Wars family is final. I left with a very good taste in my mouth about the whole family, and I hope that I left a good taste in their mouth. They're a great group of people, the Lucas family."
One of the interesting things from this report is that Lucasfilm is still determined to release the Han Solo movie on May 25, 2018. We haven't seen a shred of footage from the movie yet and, considering how much of the movie is being retooled in reshoots, that is an awful lot to ask to meet that release date. Especially when you have to cut a great actor out of the movie for time's sake. As far as we know, Woody Harrelson, Emilia Clarke, Donald Glover, Thandie Newton, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Joonas Suotamo and Alden Ehrenreich, who plays the movie's titular character made famous by Harrison Ford, are still in the movie.