Solo: A Star Wars Story has been in the news quite a bit lately. Last week, Star Wars fans were able to get the movie trending on social media in hopes that it would get the attention of the studio to green light a sequel. While a sequel is a longshot, the first one was a fun project for Ron Howard to direct. He recently decided to look back at it and gave some of his reasoning as to why it didn’t perform at the box office.
Ron Howard felt “very good” with the way his Star Wars movie turned out and he enjoyed the way that it played to audiences. However, he does wish it would have done a bit better at the box office, along with a lot of people behind-the-scenes. The director discussed some of the reasons the movie didn’t do as well as it should have, including the release date, elements possibly being too nostalgic, The Last Jedi backlash and more. But when it comes down to it, Howard believes some negativity was to blame for some of the low box office numbers. He explains.
“So whatever millions (Solo) made worldwide, those were the core fans, but it didn’t hit that zeitgeist point, for whatever reason. Timing, young Han Solo, pushback from the previous movie, which I kept hearing was maybe something. And some trolling, definitely some trolling. Some actual aggressive… It was pretty interesting. Not so much, a little bit the Twitter feed, yes, but it was especially noticeable prior to the release of the movie. Several of the algorithms, whether it was Metacritic or Rotten Tomatoes, there was an inordinate push down on the ‘want to see’ and on the fan voting. And when you look at it, it’s like 3, 4, 5 — or whatever the rating is, I forget what the rating is on Rotten Tomatoes, whether it’s a scale of 1-5 or 1-10 — but pretty high, and then a series of 0s or .5s or 1s.”
The Star Wars franchise and the Marvel Cinematic Universe have been targeted by online trolls many times over the past few years. Teams of people were going to popular review sites to fire off angry reviews before the movies were even released in theaters, which dropped their scores. Rotten Tomatoes has taken a new stance on the trolling and have implemented some strategies to keep trolls from review bombing movies.
Ron Howard was given a pretty good bashing on social media by certain groups of Star Wars fans for his work on Solo after it hit theaters. But, the director knew it was all a part of jumping on board the franchise and does not feel badly about the way everything went down. Howard went on to praise Alden Ehrenreich for his performance as the young Han Solo. He had this to say.
Related: Why the Empire Really Gave Han the Last Name Solo
“Under that circumstance, I didn’t take it personally at all, but I felt badly. And I thought Alden did a really great job, an incredibly talented guy, and dedicated guy, and I had a blast with everybody. And look, a year later, it’s kind of interesting, you wouldn’t think you’d participate in a Star Wars project and have it be a cult movie, but I can already tell those who have affection for it are pretty adamant in their feelings, and that’s nice.”
Solo has already been looked at in a more positive light since its release a year ago. Star Wars fans are starting to come around to it, even fans who were not into it at the time of its release. Does this mean Solo 2 is on the way? Probably not. Especially when you have a contingent of Youtubers like Comic Artist Pro Secrets, Geeks and Gamers and many others continuing to fill the pockets of the fans base with old sea water, dragging them down every chance they get, continuing to shine a spotlight on the less savory aspects of Lucasfilm and what they are currently doing with this franchise. Lucasfilm and Disney are putting their focus on The Rise of Skywalker, The Mandalorian, and a new trilogy at the moment. Not to mention the recent launch of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. You can check out the rest of the interview with Ron Howard over at the Happy Sad Confused Podcast.