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Ron Howard Explains His Role On The New Willow Disney+ Series - Exclusive

Ron Howard's career has been connected with that of George Lucas even before "Star Wars" became a thing — as a teenager, Howard starred as Steve Bollander in Lucas's 1973 hit "American Graffiti." Howard's 1988 film "Willow," his sixth movie as a director, was based on a story by Lucas, who also executive produced the film and whose Industrial Light and Magic studio contributed groundbreaking special effects. Now, a streaming series continuing the adventures of the Nelwyn dwarf sorcerer Willow as an older man is in the worlds on Disney+.

Looper got the chance to speak to Howard as part of an exclusive interview for "Thirteen Lives," his new film on Prime Video based on the true story of the Tham Luang cave rescue. We asked him about his involvement in the new "Willow" series (premiering November 30 on Disney+), and he shared what he's been up to while filling the executive producer role held by Lucas on the original film.

Ron Howard says Willow is funny, modern, and exciting

As the executive producer of the "Willow" sequel series, Howard said that he is "not hands on, not in the trenches." Jonathan Kasdan, who co-wrote and co-produced the Howard-directed "Solo: A Star Wars Story," is running the series alongside Wendy Mericle. "However," Howard told us, "I'm reading all the scripts, seeing dailies, seeing the cuts... [and] I'm really excited for the show."

In terms of the style of the show, Howard describes it as "both true to the traditions of Willow and the work that we did then... [and] a real contemporary evolution of it, in a cool way that is entertaining. It preserves a lot of the humor, but in a much more modern way. Jon and the team are great, and it's great to see Warwick Davis back as Willow, wiser, but [still] Willow. It's been fun to be a part of it."

"Thirteen Lives" is now streaming on Prime Video.