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Why Did George Sell Lucasfilm?

Discussion in 'Lucasfilm Ltd. In-Depth Discussion' started by guittarjedi, Feb 8, 2016.

  1. guittarjedi

    guittarjedi Jedi Grand Master star 4

    May 21, 2002
    On the ABC Morning Show, George said he was losing money and would have had to lay off workers. Was it due to prequel toys selling poorly and Crystal Skull underperforming?
  2. darklordoftech

    darklordoftech Force Ghost star 6

    Sep 30, 2012
    Lucas had already done everything that he could possibly do within his lifetime. He had made two trilogies, four Indie films, and Red Tails. What else could he do that he wasn't too old for?
    Darkslayer likes this.
  3. mihaitzateo

    mihaitzateo Jedi Knight star 3

    Oct 5, 2015
    Well, Lucas declares one thing and actually thinks at another thing :) .
    He is now 2nd person,as number of shares in Disney.
    He did not sold his Disney shares even if he said he will do so.
    BadCane and ObiWanKnowsMe like this.
  4. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Jun 28, 2001
    Where did he say that he was losing money and had to lay off people?
    mes520 likes this.
  5. True Sith

    True Sith Jedi Knight star 4

    May 10, 2015
    I find it extremely hard to believe he was losing money....
  6. Alexrd

    Alexrd Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 7, 2009
    Source? What he said, and it wasn't on ABC from what I remember, was that his latest projects weren't bringing a lot of revenue to the company (that would be Red Tails due to boxoffice underperformance and The Clone Wars, which while profitable was very expensive for a CG animated show and was barely bringing any money because of that. Same thing happened with Young Indy). He wasn't losing money, nor did he fire anybody. In fact, when he sold the company, one of the terms was that his employees would remain.

    No, because prequel toys didn't sell poorly nor did Crystal Skull underperformed.

    As for why he sold the company? Because he wanted to retire and raise his daughter.
  7. guittarjedi

    guittarjedi Jedi Grand Master star 4

    May 21, 2002
    On "CBS This Morning" not ABC. I can't fix my first post. Sorry about the mix up.
  8. ImpreciseStormtrooper

    ImpreciseStormtrooper Jedi Knight star 3

    Jan 8, 2016
    I always thought the failure of Red Tails had a lot to do with his decision to get out of commercial filmmaking. He took an absolute financial and critical bath on that movie, after investing a lot of his time in it.

    In interviews at the time he basically said he was retiring from making blockbusters, would never make another Star Wars film, and even had a massive swipe at his fans who he blamed for the poor reception in the New York times back then as well:

    "On the internet, all those same guys that are complaining I made a change are completely changing the movie. I'm saying: 'Fine. But my movie, with my name on it, that says I did it, needs to be the way I want it.'"
    "Why would I make any more," Lucas says, "when everybody yells at you all the time and says what a terrible person you are?"

    I just think he basically was jack of the whole thing. Don't really blame him.
  9. TheMoldyCrow

    TheMoldyCrow Jedi Knight star 3

    Jun 16, 2015
    From what I remember, Lucas said he wanted someone to take over the company for him as he was planning on retiring. I believe even asked his kids if they wanted to take over the company. They wanted to do their own things, so he decided to sell the company to someone. At one point, I think he considered selling the company to FOX. It was around the time Star Tours 2 opened in 2011 that he began to talk to Bob Iger about selling the company to Disney.
    Darth Basin and ObiWanKnowsMe like this.
  10. Thorin Oakenshield

    Thorin Oakenshield Jedi Knight star 3

    Feb 9, 2016
    Can someone explain how the deal went down? I find it a little odd that Lucas would ask for 4 BILLION for the company and then give it all away.... Did Disney offer 4 billion? Did GEorge ask for 4 billion?
    Darth Basin and ObiWanKnowsMe like this.
  11. ObiWanKnowsMe

    ObiWanKnowsMe Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 7, 2015
    he had done so much with lucasfilm, it's hard to see what else he couldve done and i do believe that he couldve been potentially losing a little money slowly. I think Lucasfilm focused more on PT / TCW stuff and figures selling and they kind of left out the OT figures on the store shelves for so long. Plus if GL ever got around to making an ep7-8-9, which I believe he wouldve eventually have done, than I doubt it wouldve sold as much as it shouldve because too many people didnt like how he directed the PT
  12. Oissan

    Oissan Force Ghost star 7

    Mar 9, 2001
    I very much doubt that he would have done that. After all, he already did start to work on the new trilogy way before he sold his company to Disney. He brought in Arndt to develop the story from his basic outline. The entire point was to have another Star Wars trilogy on the way - a trilogy in which he would let others take over - to entice Disney (or whoever else it could have ended up with) to buy the company. In other words, this new trilogy is not something that Disney decided on after buying Lucasfilm, it was something that Lucas had brought along to make the company more appealing to a buyer. Seeing how he did start to develop this trilogy without planing to be heavily involved in it, it seems unlikely that he ever would have made a new trilogy in any other way.
  13. ObiWanKnowsMe

    ObiWanKnowsMe Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 7, 2015
    So I suppose that's why he is kind of mad at Disney. He wanted the story to go one way how he laid it out and they went the exact opposite
  14. ShaneP

    ShaneP Ex-Mod Officio star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Mar 26, 2001
    GL sold Lucasfilm because he didn't have any more films lined up to keep it solvent. That's why it was looking like a downsizing was in the future had he kept it. That's what he was talking about on CBS This Morning.

    He was pretty much done with filmmaking. All he had in the pipeline was the long in development Strange Magic. That was in development for at least a decade. He also didn't want to give over what may be the rest of his life to another SW trilogy.

    So he was done. Simple as that.

    Since selling he's just gone after getting his museum built. That is his current project, not film production.
  15. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Jun 28, 2001

    Lucas isn't a greedy man. He took it as four billion, with half in cash and IIRC, in stock options. He then gave the cash to charity.
  16. Mandalore The Ultimate

    Mandalore The Ultimate Jedi Padawan star 1

    Jul 15, 2015
    Because he wanted to retire? He couldn't be making movies forever.
    Erkan12, Davak24, Howard Hand and 2 others like this.
  17. Lt. Hija

    Lt. Hija Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 8, 2015
    That's right, in one of his interviews he stated that making the ST would have taken another 10 years of his life and he wasn't willing to do that.

    On the other hand, he wanted the people at Lucasfilm to keep their jobs and selling Lucasfilm to Disney was apparently one way to ensure this - mostly (except for LucasArts, excerpt from Wikipedia):

    On October 30, 2012, LucasArts was acquired by The Walt Disney Company through the acquisition of its parent company Lucasfilm in a deal for $4.05 billion. A Disney representative stated that its intent at the time was for all employees at Lucasfilm and its subsidiaries to remain at their present positions. A LucasArts representative said that "for the time being, all projects are business as usual".[64]
    On December 4, 2012, the acquisition of Lucasfilm was approved by the Federal Trade Commission, allowing the deal to be finalized without dealing with antitrust problems.[65] On December 21, 2012, the deal was completed, and Lucasfilm and all of its subsidiaries became wholly owned by Disney.[66]

    Information that surfaced in March 2013 suggested that Star Wars games already in development, such as Star Wars 1313 and First Assault, may have been put on hold in order to put more focus on Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens.[67] At the time, LucasArts also had three untitled games in development: an open-world RPG,[68] an FPS, and an aerial combat game.[69] According to a job listing posted via the Lucasfilm website, LucasArts was also planning on creating a new online service which they claimed would "revolutionize the industry."[70]

    On April 3, 2013, a Disney representative confirmed that LucasArts would cease to operate as a video game developer. Future video games based on its properties will either be developed by Disney Interactive Studios or licensed to third-party developers.[5] As a result, all of its future internal projects were cancelled, and most of its staff were laid off from the company. However, LucasArts remained open with a skeleton staff of fewer than ten employees so it could retain its function as a video game licensor.[1][71] Disney indicated that the new business model would "[minimize] the company's risk while achieving a broad portfolio of quality Star Wars games."[6][7] Around 150 staff members lost their jobs as a result of the closure.[72] The layoffs at LucasArts also resulted in layoffs at fellow visual effects subsidiary Industrial Light & Magic; as many of LucasArts' employees also worked for ILM, the company was left overstaffed.[73]
  18. Darkslayer

    Darkslayer Force Ghost star 6

    Mar 26, 2013
    As a SW fan, I wish he never had :(
  19. ezekiel22x

    ezekiel22x Force Ghost star 5

    Aug 9, 2002

    Yep. As a Star Wars fan I'm pretty bummed how things turned out. As a Lucas fan, though, I can see how the sale might've been a huge relief to him. And who knows, maybe the new situation might eventually get the creativity flowing again enough to see one more film project from him, even if on a smaller scale.
  20. Howard Hand

    Howard Hand Jedi Master star 4

    Feb 11, 2015
    Davak24 likes this.
  21. {Quantum/MIDI}

    {Quantum/MIDI} Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Dec 21, 2015

  22. Jonipoon

    Jonipoon Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 22, 2014
    Selling it was the right thing to do, but I still don't understand why it had to be Disney. Why not just sell it to 20th Century Fox?

    Also, he should've made a better deal, where he would be a creative consultant for the new films.
  23. Lt. Hija

    Lt. Hija Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 8, 2015

    Lucasfilm had already co-operated with Disney on various occasions and his personal backstory with Fox (ANH, ESB) wasn't the best.

    I also would have liked to see him as creative consultant but based on history that didn't really work too well with Gene Roddenberry and Star Trek II. And Lucas said himself in the December 2016 interviews he would have probably intervened too much to make this work.

    Yet, with George Lucas aboard I'm confident that people would have thought twice ("Is that really what George would have done"?) before making some things in TFA final.
    leiamoody and Jonipoon like this.
  24. Jedi Rey X

    Jedi Rey X Jedi Youngling star 1

    May 27, 2016
    Thought he wanted to retire in Florida and collect sea shells just before sunrise. Then eat at a Waffle House watch the sunrise just so he can bitch about the coffee.
    ObiWanKnowsMe likes this.
  25. Lt. Hija

    Lt. Hija Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 8, 2015
    Jedi Rey X

    What's wrong with Waffle House, I love their breakfasts!
    -Jedi Joe- likes this.