In one of the more earth-shattering (and internet-breaking) announcements in recent memory, Disney has acquired Lucasfilm, George Lucas's film empire. Not only that, but it has also announced its intentions to produce a seventh "Star Wars" film, which it has set for release in 2015.
Disney's purchase didn't come cheap. At $4 billion, it's roughly the same amount it paid for Marvel Comics, but it nets them all of Lucasfilm's assets and properties, including Industrial Light and Magic and the Indiana Jones franchise.
The initial press release indicated that the company has no intentions of producing any new Indy adventures, nor does it intend to change the status quo at ILM. Kathleen Kennedy--who took over as CEO for Lucas earlier this year--will remain on board as Lucasfilm president, where she will answer directly to Disney chief Alan Horn.
Obviously, the big news here concerns "Star Wars." Unlike the Indiana Jones franchise, Disney has no intentions of letting one of the biggest film franchises in history lie fallow. This new film--which is being touted as "Episode VII"--will be but the first in a new trilogy of films, with the other two films slated to hit in 2017 and 2019.
Beyond that, Disney hopes to continue its "Star Wars" business with more future films. However, the questions on most fans' minds likely center on this new trilogy of films. Will it be the Sequel Trilogy that Lucas has hinted at in the past? Or will it simply just be a trilogy that happens to take place after "Return of the Jedi" and will feature no real connection to the Original Trilogy?
Those familiar with their "Star Wars" lore already know the complicated status of the seemingly mythic Sequel Trilogy, as Lucas's story changed over the years. At one point, "Star Wars" was set to be a 12 part tale before being pared down to nine possible entries. It looked like Lucas was content to stop at six, but, now the saga will continue.
In the past, Lucas has noted that he had some loose ideas written down concerning the further adventures of Luke Skywalker, and he has provided the outline for this next set of films. He will continue to serve as a creative consultant, but he has now all but retired and handed off the reigns to another generation of filmmakers to continue the "Star Wars" saga.
The status of "Episode VII" is certain to be the subject of rumors in the coming months; as of now, Kennedy and company have met with writers, but this is certainly still very much a breaking development.
- Arts & Entertainment
- George Lucas
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