If it's crap ... We'll tell you
In a truly unexpected turn of events, George Lucas has sold his Lucasfilm empire to the Disney corporation for a whopping $4.05 billion. Disney will pay close to half of that in cash upfront and half in stock options. The current co-chair of Lucasfilm, Kathleen Kennedy, will be taking over as president of the company. It appears Disney does not intend to simply rest on the name they've just acquired. It has already been announced that they will be putting a new 'Star Wars' film in theaters in 2015, with more films arriving every two to three years for some time after. They've made it a point to note that Lucas will be serving as creative consultant on these films, not directing or writing. This effectively shuts out Fox from any Star Wars related business including merchandising. Here's what Lucas had to say...
"For the past 35 years, one of my greatest pleasures has been to see Star Wars passed from one generation to the next. It’s now time for me to pass Star Wars on to a new generation of filmmakers. I’ve always believed that Star Wars could live beyond me, and I thought it was important to set up the transition during my lifetime. I’m confident that with Lucasfilm under the leadership of Kathleen Kennedy, and having a new home within the Disney organization, Star Wars will certainly live on and flourish for many generations to come. Disney’s reach and experience give Lucasfilm the opportunity to blaze new trails in film, television, interactive media, theme parks, live entertainment and consumer products.”
This is huge! It's hard to believe we've actually reached this day. It's a little surreal. Those of use who have been complaining for years about Lucas' meddling with and corrupting the greatness of 'Star Wars' have always recognized the problem has been his maniacal level of control over every creative decision. Now that he has relinquished that control, we must reevaluate our perception of nearly every 'Star Wars' announcement. A new movie in 2015 that won't be directed or written by Lucas? Ok, now I'm excited. Not sure what finally drove Lucas, who has seemed quite impervious to fan outrage since 1997, to pass the torch and step down off the throne, but I'm going to offer my respect and sincere thanks. Disney is sitting pretty right now; controlling both Marvel and Lucasfilm. On the one hand, you want to bemoan the fact that one massive corporation controls so many of the inevitable blockbusters of the next several years. However the relative autonomy Disney has given Marvel, and the creative success the Marvel films have enjoyed in addition to the commercial, leads me to believe this is a great move for everyone...including we fans. I can't wait to see what stories from the 'Star Wars' universe are explored in...'Episode VII?'
Ok, Spillios, this is a big one so speak up! What do you think of this deal, of the end of an era? Excited? Apprehensive? How about the new 'Star Wars' movie?