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Why Did George Sell Lucasfilm?

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

  1. GunganSlayer

    GunganSlayer Jedi Master star 3

    Jan 24, 2013

    Lucas was the producer and the creative force behind Red Tails. He was a rather "hands-on" producer on the project, and did eventually direct some re-shoots. Much like ESB or ROTJ, it was very much his film.
    Darkslayer likes this.
  2. Darth_Nub

    Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Apr 26, 2009
    Exactly - Red Tails was a project he'd been developing since 1988, at which time Anthony Hemingway, eventually the director of the film, was 11 years old. Films don't always begin and end with the credited director (or even the writer). Some do, others don't. Most don't.
    There's a handful of directors who were/are very much the primary creative force behind their films, and could fairly claim most of the credit (or blame) for the results - Stanley Kubrick, David Lynch, Alfred Hitchcock, Akira Kurosawa, Orson Welles etc - but they're the exception rather than the rule, and all of them have done the occasional movies where they were just guns-for-hire.

    The 'authorship' of a film (which is almost always highly collaborative, anyway) varies too much between individual productions to be able to attribute it to one role - and yet there's this long-standing myth (best known as 'auteur theory') that the director is definitively the author of a film. You can thank Francois Truffaut and the Cahiers du Cinema mob (and then US film critic Andrew Sarris) for that.
  3. darthtimetraveller

    darthtimetraveller Jedi Knight star 3

    Aug 9, 2015
    I don't know why he sold it, but based on what we've gotten so far (namely TFA and Rebels), it was a huge mistake imo. Here's hoping R1 and Ep8 can "begin to make things right" again.
    Zikri and Darkslayer like this.
  4. Anakin.Skywalker

    Anakin.Skywalker Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Oct 11, 2016
    I think he wanted the money. I think he felt he stretched it out as much as he could and people still be okay with it. I mean, if he were to have made 7, 8, and 9, I'm sure people would have worried whether or not it would be any good.

    (Leave it to Disney to stretch it more.....) I don't like what Disney did but TFA is a good sci-fi action movie.
  5. Finland Skywalker

    Finland Skywalker Jedi Padawan star 1

    Nov 13, 2016
    I love episode 7 and hate Rebels.

    (It's all about the money)
  6. Zejo the Jedi

    Zejo the Jedi Jedi Knight star 3

    Nov 16, 2016
    To secure both his and SW's future.
  7. Jar-Jar Binks

    Jar-Jar Binks Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 17, 2016
  8. bstnsx704

    bstnsx704 Jedi Master star 3

    Mar 11, 2013
    What better way to retire but also ensure that all of your employees remain employed?
    AplagueOnTheWise likes this.
  9. BadCane

    BadCane Jedi Knight star 3

    Oct 28, 2015
    I think he was too tired to board on yet another 8-10 years cycle worth of movie making with the ST. He considered his age, his family and just passed it on.
    lookameatbag and Master_Rebado like this.
  10. ladygrey45

    ladygrey45 Jedi Knight star 4

    Dec 30, 2015
    he said he wanted to focus on raising his family.
    Zikri likes this.
  11. Obi-John Kenobi

    Obi-John Kenobi Jedi Master star 3

    Oct 30, 2012
    Basically he got tired of the obnoxious wing of the fanbase where he could do no right. Plus, he's getting into his golden years and didn't really need the daily grind. He wanted to enjoy his family.

    Would've been nice had he kept his "Godfather" status at Disney. But Disney wasn't really going to take his "Creative Consultation" into account. (any more than Stan Lee or Gene Roddenberry ever had any final say on their projects) Lucas probably figured why endure his input getting shunned? Might as well cut ties all together.
  12. Anakin.Skywalker

    Anakin.Skywalker Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Oct 11, 2016
    I always thought it was because he wasn't going to go any farther with it and figured he could get a lot of money by selling it.

    I already posted here?! Really? Okay then...never mind.
  13. MrMojoRisin

    MrMojoRisin Jedi Master star 4

    Jun 20, 2005
  14. SunnyNelson

    SunnyNelson Jedi Knight star 1

    Dec 23, 2013
  15. Martoto77

    Martoto77 Jedi Master star 5

    Aug 6, 2016
    Why does anyone do anything?
  16. AplagueOnTheWise

    AplagueOnTheWise Jedi Knight star 3

    Oct 27, 2013
    Money, simple .
  17. Darth Invictus

    Darth Invictus Jedi Master star 4

    Aug 8, 2016

    He gave the 4 Billion soon after to charity so there had to be another reason.
  18. PoorRebel

    PoorRebel Jedi Youngling star 1

    Mar 14, 2017
    My bet is that George realized that he doesn't get it right. And the pressure probably was very intense once a production starts rolling, so to speak ... :">
  19. fastcooljosh

    fastcooljosh Jedi Padawan star 1

    Mar 15, 2017
    I still think 4 billion was a way too low .
    I mean Activision spent more on Candy Crush ($5.9bn) than Disney did on Lucasfilm which is hilarious imo.

    And I read an article a few years ago that star wars alone was worth roundabout 30 bn

    Maybe just maybe Lucas sold only the movie/toy rights (Indy,Star Wars) to Disney, which would be way more believable than selling the whole thing for "only" 4bn, but still owns the whole company in secret.
  20. Lord Sith Harloxzz

    Lord Sith Harloxzz Jedi Knight star 3

    Jun 27, 2016
    Because he gets tired of his own saga all thanks to the hater of the prequels
    lookameatbag likes this.
  21. PymParticles

    PymParticles Cruel but Fair Tyrant of New Films star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Oct 1, 2014
    I just think he was getting tired of it. Not necessarily the criticism, but it is rough being in the public eye, where everything you do is going to be scrutinized under a microscope, and where you're constantly under pressure to live up to the achievements you accomplished in your 30s. And that's not exclusive to him, various filmmakers undergo it, as do artists of all mediums. I mean, look at bands, who are constantly talked about in the light of their "good stuff" and their "new stuff." But at a certain point, you just want to enjoy your life without the need to please millions of people, who all have their own very specific wants. Lucas may have been an artist, but he was still a businessman who was selling his art as a product, and that becomes stressful, especially when you really specialize in one thing. In this case that thing being Star Wars, one of the most popular and iconic things on the planet.

    But I'm honestly glad he did, for a few reasons. The first is that I'm sure he's enjoying his semi-retirement. He has a wife, he has kids, and he has a life he built for himself that he's just able to enjoy now. And if he's working on those small, weird films he always talked about making in his garage (literally or metaphorically), good for him, even if they're just for him and we never get to see them. He deserves that peace. The second thing is that, with distance from the series, I think people have been able to appreciate the things they liked about his work and let go of the things he didn't. I saw so many articles published around the time The Force Awakens was released, whether the author liked the new film or not, that praised Lucas' achievements, particularly in regards to the original film that he succeeding in bringing to the world almost as if by a miracle.

    And third, because I genuinely like the direction Lucasfilm has been taking the series under Disney. I loved Rogue One, I loved The Force Awakens, I couldn't possibly be any more excited for The Last Jedi, and I have a really good feeling about the Han Solo movie. I like Star Wars Rebels, although I'll concede it's fallen short of the work Filoni did with Lucas on The Clone Wars. I think the Forces of Destiny animated shorts they're doing are fantastic in making it clear to young girls that this series belongs to them just as much it does to the boys, and I love that they've had diverse casts across all their films thus far, both released and in production. This series has always been for everyone, but it now truly feels like it's for everyone. Star Wars was always going to outlive Lucas, but I personally feel it couldn't have been placed in any better hands. Lucasfilm, under Disney's ownership and Kathleen Kennedy's direction, is as vibrant and relevant as ever, and I think they've absolutely honored the work and legacy of Lucas.
  22. Darth__Lobot

    Darth__Lobot Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 29, 2015
    Once he gets some distance I think Lucas will be happy with his decision (and it sounds like he really enjoyed Rogue One... which doesn't really surprise me for quite a few reasons). Obviously I don't know the guy personally, but it has to be kind of awesome see the franchise you created bring magic to a new generation.

    Once you step away from silly fanboy stuff what really has to be awesome is to see a whole new generation of kids running around in Star Wars t-shirts and having their imaginations let loose by the franchise he created. I'd like to think that if he saw a picture of my oldest daughter in her Rey costume and my youngest daughter in her chewbacca t-shirt that it would bring a smile to his face.

    I'm not at all surprised he sold to Disney - they actually really do care about the quality of what they put out and they are big enough that they can allow Licasfilm somewhat free reign. (IIRC didn't Lucas say it was a no brainer to pick Disney? or something like that?)
    JW Fan likes this.
  23. Jester J Binks

    Jester J Binks Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 19, 2016
    Lucas let go of all he fears to lose so that Star Wars could become one with the fans eternally. Star Wars will be his force ghost.

    That and he owed a bookie $4 billion from a 1999 bet that Jar Jar Binks would be the most well received Star Wars character ever.
    JW Fan and Darth__Lobot like this.
  24. NotSoScruffyLooking

    NotSoScruffyLooking Jedi Master star 3

    Mar 20, 2009
    Because he had already done everything he wanted to do in film and why not live out the last 20 years of your life with $4B to spend? He probably saw that Disney had done good with Marvel and felt that Star Wars was in good hands.
  25. fastcooljosh

    fastcooljosh Jedi Padawan star 1

    Mar 15, 2017
    I still believe he didn't sell it, just the sequel rights and distribution rights for all movies. (He always had a love/hate relationship with FOX anyway)

    I cant see how he could sell a company- his legacy- to hollywood ( for such a laughable price btw), since he basically always wanted his company to be independent and as far away as possible from this whole hollywood bs.
    Also the age argument is dumb too. His kids could take over if he wants to retire. Jett Lucas is a big star wars nerd, he would have done great. KK could still be the CEO of LFL and do the whole business stuff.
    Kinda like a family company.

    I just don't see the point and it makes me somehow angry.