Friday, November 2, 2012

Star Wars - the future with Disney?

By now you undoubtedly know that Lucasfilm has been sold to Disney – Luke Skywalker and Mickey Mouse together under the same roof, or maybe Donald Duck and Yoda, Darth Vader and Maleficent, how about Minnie Mouse and Princess Leia – okay, I will stop now.

The Hollywood Reporter and other news outlets reporting on the $4.05 Billion sale indicate that Disney plans future Star Wars films with the first coming in 2015. The also report that Kathleen Kennedy, the current co-chair of Lucasfilm will be President of Lucas under Disney. That suggests continuity, but of course that remains to be seen. The real question: Is Star Wars, Star Wars without George Lucas?

Reportedly, Kennedy and Lucas have already been working on the new (Episode VII) Star Wars but what does that mean now and as the project further develops? Exactly how much involvement will Lucas have?

There are some who will hope that it means less involvement. There are fans of Star Wars, who see all the movies but complain about what Lucas has done since the original films. There is even a documentary about these disgruntled fans titled The People vs George Lucas. The documentary suggests that Lucas has betrayed his original masterwork; that The Phantom Menace should carry a health warning.

EOnline reports that other than having written the treatment his involvement will be minimal.

They further suggest that the film and subsequent ones will be much more of an original and may be based on stories from a series of books, The Thrawn Trilogy by Timothy Zahn.
Future Star Wars films are not the only thing of interest in this sale. The previous six films were distributed by Twentieth Century Fox, which has announced plans to release 3D versions of at least some of those films. Will this deal complicate that?

Of course, Star Wars is not the only franchise Lucasfilm owns, there is that other very lucrative Indiana Jones. Future versions, if any are even contemplated, of that are likely to be complicated because a sequel rights/distribution deal with Paramount.

One other possibility, I suppose we could have American Graffiti, the Final Days in which we catch up with all the characters as they get shipped off to the nursing home.

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