Star Wars Episode 7 News

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

George Lucas and His Involvement With the New Star Wars Movies.

george lucas c3po 

Almost a year after Disney bought Lucasfilm and acquired the rights to make more Star Wars movies, it's still unclear what exactly will be George Lucas' role. There were several reports that his involvement with the new movies will be minimal and only if "they call him". Now let's go back and see what we know so far about Lucas and his involvement with the new Star Wars movies...

First let's talk about the Daniel Day-Lewis rumor

kathleen kennedy

When the rumor hit the web many people refused to believe it mainly because J.J. Abrams was not there and Lucas' new role doesn't include casting people for the new movies. Personally I think people underestimate Lucas' part in the upcoming Star Wars projects.

Although the rumor indeed sounds incredible and very unlikely it is not that illogical. Some facts:

Daniel Day-Lewis' latest movie was Lincoln directed by Steven Spielberg. We all know the relationship between Lucas and Spielberg and guess who is the producer of Lincoln? That's right, it's Kathleen Kennedy. So if Disney wants DDL to be involved somehow with the new movies it's most logical to turn to Kathleen Kennedy and Spielberg's best friend to convince him.

Also as it was pointed out in the comments section (thanks to Frank Marsteller) Lewis' likeness was used in early concept art for The Phantom Menace. More than one of the conceptual designers wanted him in a role and in a black Jedi outfit based on Luke's outfit in Return of the Jedi.

luke skywalker

Of course I'm not saying this rumor is true but it's not that far fetched. And if true it really shows that Lucas will still have a big influence on everything and Disney do care about his opinion. Now let's go back and see what we know so far about Lucas' involvement with the new movies. 

Similar to the above situation George Lucas was used to convince the original Star Wars cast members to join the new movies. Lucas himself said:
"We had already signed Mark and Carrie and Harrison—or we were pretty much in final stages of negotiation. So I called them to say, ‘Look, this is what’s going on.’ ” He pauses. “Maybe I’m not supposed to say that. I think they want to announce that with some big whoop-de-do, but we were negotiating with them.”
luke leia han chewbacca

Still on several occasions Lucas spoke to the press and made it clear that he won't do much on the upcoming movies:
“[If the filmmakers ask],‘Who’s this guy?’ I can tell them. I mean, they have a hundred encyclopedias and things, but I actually know a lot. I can say, ‘This is this and this is that.’ If they need help or anything, they’ll give me a call. Otherwise, I’m off on my own.”
Soon after the deal between Disney and Lucas, his biographer Dale Pollock shared some interesting bits about the initial idea of the SW saga and also revealed what else was part of the deal:
 “It was originally a 12-part saga. The three most exciting stories were 7, 8 and 9. They had propulsive action, really interesting new worlds, new characters. I remember thinking, ‘I want to see these 3 movies." 

About the new sequel trilogy, Pollock revealed that they take place approximately 20 years after the events of the original trilogy. This places Luke Skywalker in his late 30s or early to mid-40s. According to Pollock, Lucas’ outlines will be an essential foundation of the upcoming trilogy - 

"Writers will absolutely take his outline. That’s in part what Disney bought.”
Lucas also spoke about his story treatments and that Disney and Kathleen Kennedy now have a full control over them and that they will take them for a future consideration:
I have story treatments of  Episodes 7, 8 and 9 and a bunch of other movies, and obviously we have hundreds of books and comics, and everything you could possibly imagine. I moved that treasure trove of stories and various things to Kathleen and I have complete confidence that she’s going to take them and make great movies.
So if indeed Episode 7 writer Michael Arndt has written the script based on Lucas' treatment they surely will very often consult with him.

Still Disney wanted to make sure that Lucas understood that they, not Lucasfilm, would have final say over any future movies. 

lucas disney
“We needed to have an understanding that if we acquire the company, despite tons of collegial conversations and collaboration, at the end of the day, we have to be the ones who sign off on whatever the plans are,” says Alan Horn, chairman of Walt Disney Studios.
At first Lucas wouldn’t even turn over his rough sketches of the next three Star Wars films. When Disney executives asked to see them, he assured them they would be great and said they should just trust him. 

Once Lucas got assurances from Disney in writing about the broad outlines of the deal, he agreed to turn over the treatments—but insisted they could only be read by Disney's Iger, Horn, and Kevin Mayer. 
“We promised,” says Iger. “We had to sign an agreement.”
When Iger finally got a look at the treatments, he was elated. According to him from a storytelling perspective they had a lot of potential.

disney star wars

So to sum things up - since The Deal, Disney made it clear that they are taking the Star Wars legacy very seriously. They really are trying hard to make something that the fans will approve. George Lucas is an important part of all this and Disney and Kathleen Kennedy will often turn to him for advise and help. They will surely use his big influence on the filmmaking business and make most of it.

No matter what some people think about the Prequel Trilogy and some of Lucas' screenplays he will always be the father of Star Wars. Without him none of this would have happened. And I think Disney very well realizes that.

So will Lucas have a big involvement with the next movies? Yes, I think so. One way or another...


  1. Despite losing touch with the fan base and his over-reliance of visual effects, Star Wars just wouldn't be the same without George Lucas's creative input.

  2. The problem with Episodes I, II and III, I believe was the absence of anyone who would/could say "No" to George Lucas. His vision was more important than the quality of the product.

  3. Thanks for the shout out my friend, it is greatly appreciated. If anyone out there needs info to tide them over till episode 7 there are some great sites out there you might not have heard about. Look up Jedi Bendu or the first drafts of star wars because just like the recent comic THE STAR WARS there are many drafts published on the net of almost all of the films -with more than one version of each installment. Also look up star wars origins site. It is accurate and phenomenal! You can compare any of the information on the sites with Lucasfilm books with archive material. Basically I'm saying that, hey these are the real deal. With info about the creator himself and how the Star wars and Lucasfilm were born. Even cool info on how Lando was to be a clone!?!?!? Thanks again Viral Hide cool post you made my day.

  4. So... From many of Lucas' above comments, it seems clear that Arndt will be using the EU as a reference when writing the new script. I was under the impression that the books and comics would have absolutly nothing to do with the new movies.

    1. Lucasfilm/Disney never actually said that EU would be dissed in favor of a completely new storyline. They never said that. That was just an assumption taken by fans. What Lucasfilm/Disney ACTUALLY said was that they are not going to concentrate on any particular EU novel. In other words, the stories themselves will be original, but it is very possible we will see characters from the novels, such as Jaina, Jacen, etc...

      The only thing that makes me scratch my head in contemplation is this: how much does the Expanded Universe clash with Lucas' original storyline of episodes 7, 8, 9, and beyond???

  5. I want Lucas to remain a distant consultant or... the idea guy. Because that's when it worked best. People took his ideas and visions and made amazing movies. Yet when he had more control... it fell apart.

    So I'm thinking this could work out great.

  6. DDL would be the pefect Thrawn :-)

  7. Yu-Zong-Vung? Death of Chewy? Luke loosing most of his family via the darkside, and wars. Mara Jade? all part of the EU, but I'm not sure they'll really have enough time to cover that much.

  8. What about Lando Calrissian? After all he did pilot the Falcon and help destroy the final Death Star.

  9. I don't give a DAMN!! It'll be GREAT!! BRING IT ON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. Plot Twist: He's a Jedi in an upcoming movie.

  11. I am glad that they are working on new episodes of star wars. I just hope it's as fast paced and the story plots are as twisting. The imagination that GL has, is unparalleled so they have their work cut out for them.