It's definitely 'safe' to say it -- I just wouldn't put any money on it! As a student of the art Lucas pays homage in many ways to the greats who have paved the path before him. He does not toss filmography terms around losely. As an analogy that would be like a priest/minister/rabbi/imam misquoting scripture to the faithful. The quote is a typical Lucas word dance -- I believe it is "safe(er) to say" that he is talking both of the introductory, non-plot related McGuffin and then deal with a lead-in to the 'sacred object plus the human dynamics of the creative process.