Due to its tumultuous production and expensive reshoots, Solo: A Star Wars Story is the most expensive Star Wars film ever, taking the title from The Force Awakens. Phil Lord and Chris Miller, the original directors, were fired in the middle of filming the project, with Ron Howard stepping in to finish. Initially, it was unclear how much of the film that Howard would film, especially given that he himself said that much of Miller and Lord's footage was "very usable". Howard, however, ended up reshooting a majority of the film, adding an additional three months of production to the initial six months and potentially doubling the budget of the original film.
The costs of reshooting most of the film at an accelerated pace are difficult to estimate, but some reports suggested the entire fracas doubled Solo's budget. That's hardly surprising. Actors had longer commitments and some roles recast - such as Dryden Vos, originally played by Michael K. Williams but replaced by Paul Bettany. Ironically, overspending is one of the alleged reasons why Phil Lord and Chris Miller were fired in the first place.
The end result of all this is that, according to the most recent reports, Solo: A Star Wars Story cost over $250 million. While replacing Lord and Miller with Howard doubtlessly cost more, it seems that Lucasfilm decided to finance a completely new version of the film. After all, even Harrison Ford has given the film his seal of approval.
How Does Solo Compare To Other Star Wars Budgets?
With all said and done, Solo beat out Star Wars: The Force Awakens as the most expensive film in the series, and even when inflation is taken into account, Solo is still in the running to be the most expensive Star Wars film of all time. All Star Wars film budgets are given below, including both the production cost at the time and the cost adjusted for inflation (all adjustments were calculated using the Bureau of Labor Statistics CPI Inflation Calculator):
- A New Hope - $11 million (adjusted: $45.7 million)
- The Empire Strikes Back - $18 million (adjusted: $55.13 million)
- The Return of the Jedi - $32.5 million (adjusted: $82.08 million)
- The Revenge of the Sith - $113 million (adjusted: $145.64 million)
- The Attack of the Clones - $115 million (adjusted: $160.25 million)
- The Phantom Menace - $115 million (adjusted: $173.36 million)
- Rogue One: A Star Wars Story - $200 million (adjusted: $207.55 million)
- The Last Jedi - $200-220 million (adjusted: $203.26-223.59 million)
- The Force Awakens - $245 million (adjusted: $259.52 million)
- Solo: A Star Wars Story - $250+ million
While Rogue One also needed extensive reshoots, the first anthology film is still the cheapest of the films that have occurred under Disney's ownership of Lucasfilm. In contrast, Solo's reshoots have made it the most expensive Star Wars film to-date.
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