“Solo: A Star Wars Story” Press Conference Brings Out Ron Howard, Alden Ehrenreich, Donald Glover and More to Talk About Film

Hi everyone!

We were invited to the press conference for Solo: A Star Wars Story in Hollywood. The cast and filmmakers in attendance were Alden Ehrenreich (Han Solo); Donald Glover (Lando Calrissian); Emilia Clarke (Qi’ra); Paul Bettany (Dryden Vos); Woody Harrelson (Tobias Beckett); Thandie Newton (Val); Joonas Suotamo (Chewbacca); Phoebe Waller-Bridge (L3-37); director Ron Howard and screenwriters Jonathan Kasdan and Lawrence Kasdan.

Here is our full press conference video, followed by the article.

Ron Howard took the first question, after being asked what it was like to take on a Star Wars film. He said he likened it to the Beatles documentary he helmed (The Beatles: Eight Days a Week), because “I’m in a point in my life where I like experimenting, take some chances…I want to just have the creative experience”. Howard was also asked about combining visual effects with visual sets, if he preferred one over the other. Howard said that “in-camera” is always what you want first, and then built onto it from there: “With the Millennium Falcon, and with the great sets, and so forth – the approach here always was to get as much in-camera as you could and then build from that.”
Alden Ehrenreich called being in the Millennium Falcon “really, really cool”. The moderator brought up the fact that that morning, Ehrenreich had an interesting experience (that many have now seen on video). Ehrenreich said, “Right before we started shooting, I wanted to talk to Harrison just to kind of pay respect and have him give us the blessing of the film. So we had lunch I guess…two years ago, and he was really encouraging and really supportive. Then we went off and shot the film…and today I was doing an interview and they were talking about, you know, is there anything else you’d like to ask him? And I’m like, ‘I don’t know’. And they said ‘You have your chance’ and he was behind me”. Ehrenreich said it meant a lot to him that Ford had done that and that it was “awesome”.
Donald Glover had a funny moment talking about his childhood. But then he got more serious and said that he talked to his agent when he found out that if any Star Wars films were being made with Lando, he wanted the role. Glover said, “He (Glover’s agent) was like, ‘I hear you, I don’t like your odds (to audience laughter) – and that was exactly what I needed to hear. I really did audition like it was the only role I wanted in the world because it really was”. Glover’s dad brought him up with a love of Star Wars.
Clarke talked about her role as Qi’ra, saying it was a harder one to discuss because the character is more mysterious. What Clarke did say was that the audience meets her early in the film with Han and they are separated for some reason. When we see her again, she “seems to have lived a very pretty dark life in that time”. And during the film, the audience has to learn who she is at that time versus who she was earlier on in the movie.
Howard said about Solo: A Star Wars Story that, “The heavy lifting was really done by the screenplay and then the great casting, which preceded me. I wouldn’t have come onboard without that. What I love is collaborating.” He also said during the press conference that he likens the movie to Raiders of the Lost Ark in that it is about “A single hero’s journey”.
The press conference was about 40 minutes long and you can watch it in entirety above!