The upcoming Star Wars standalone film centering around Han Solo has hit turbulence once again, with actor Michael Kenneth Williams‘ apparently having been cut from the film during reshoots. This follows the sudden departure (or firing) of directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller last June and Ron Howard stepping in to take over the film shortly after.
In his own words, Williams was set to play “a kick-ass character” that was half-human, half-animal. “I felt great about what I created with the directors that I worked with,” he told Deadline, referencing Lord and Miller. “It is what it is.”
(Read: We’ve Got a Bad Feeling About the Star Wars Franchise)
The departure was amicable, however, a result of conflicting shooting schedules between Lucasfilm and the upcoming spy drama The Red Sea Diving Resort, which Williams is currently filming in Africa with Ben Kingsley and Chris Evans. His commitments to Sundance TV’s Hap and Leonard further complicated things.
“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,” he says. “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.”
And now we’re forever left to wonder what kind of Ace Ventura-esque shenanigans Williams’ man-beast was set to stumble into in Lord and Miller’s vision.
Williams says there’s a chance he could come back, though. “I don’t think that me not being in the Star Wars family is final,” he says. “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.”
By all accounts, the film is still slated to open on its original May 25th, 2018 release date.