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When I first saw this headline, I thought it was someone's idea of a prank, so did some more searching to find other coverage. Sure enough... George Lucas, the man who has held an iron grip on the Star Wars franchise and the rest of his Lucasfilm empire has cashed in, for a price of $4.05 billion. Not only that, but Disney has already made plans to start making that cash cow a little more productive by producing a seventh Star Wars movie!
Photo to the left: Robert A. Iger, chairman and CEO, The Walt Disney Company, and George Lucas, chairman and founder, Lucasfilm sign the agreement for The Walt Disney Company to acquire Lucasfilm Ltd. Credit: Disney
The press release features the following quotes from both parties:
“Lucasfilm reflects the extraordinary passion, vision, and storytelling of its founder, George Lucas,” said Robert A. Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Walt Disney Company. “This transaction combines a world-class portfolio of content including Star Wars, one of the greatest family entertainment franchises of all time, with Disney’s unique and unparalleled creativity across multiple platforms, businesses, and markets to generate sustained growth and drive significant long-term value.”
“For the past 35 years, one of my greatest pleasures has been to see Star Wars passed from one generation to the next,” said George Lucas, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Lucasfilm. “It’s now time for me to pass Star Wars on to a new generation of filmmakers. I’ve always believed that Star Wars could live beyond me, and I thought it was important to set up the transition during my lifetime. I’m confident that with Lucasfilm under the leadership of Kathleen Kennedy, and having a new home within the Disney organization, Star Wars will certainly live on and flourish for many generations to come. Disney’s reach and experience give Lucasfilm the opportunity to blaze new trails in film, television, interactive media, theme parks, live entertainment, and consumer products.”
The Hollywood Reporter has a pretty good story on the deal. Click the Read link below to view the full article.
With this acquisition, Disney has quite a creative arsenal at its disposal. Combining the properties of Lucasfilm with Marvel Entertainment (which most recently brought us Marvel's The Avengers, the most successful movie of 2012 so far) and Pixar Animation Studios (the people behind the Toy Story franchise, as well as many many other popular and successful movies).
The seventh Star Wars movie does not have a title, not is there any information about what storyline it might use. Will it take one of the many novels written for the Star Wars Universe, such as the excellent Timothy Zahn books, or will they create a completely new story? All we know right now is that we can start referring to a movie titled Star Wars: Episode VII.
Source: Walt Disney Company / Lucasfilm Press Release
What Do You Think?
Is this news a shocker? Can Disney steer the Star Wars ship to success, or will it hit the rocks? Let us know by leaving your comments below!
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