Lucasfilm purchased, new “Star Wars” films to be made
Published: Monday, November 12, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, November 14, 2012 09:11
BY LAUREN CAPPELLONI
“It just has inherent traditional story-telling and family values that audience members of any genre, even if you don’t like sci-fi or fantasy, you might like something out of those originals,” senior Brandon Kotowski says of “Star Wars.”
Kotowski says he started watching the series when he was six and has grown to appreciate all the movies made since then. He says he knew George Lucas originally wanted to make nine films based on an interview he gave in 1979, but was surprised by the Oct. 30 announcement that Walt Disney Company bought Lucasfilm a $4.05 billion deal, which includes plans to make at least three more films.
Kotowski says he did not think they would ever expand the movies, but after finding out Lucas will still be involved, he says he is optimistic about the possibilities.
“I think him getting around to finally, almost 40 years later, completing his original, ultimate dream is pretty cool,” Kotowski says. “I think Disney is a great place for it to happen.”
Disney had much success with the Marvel franchise, which shows that their creative team is up to the task of rebooting “Star Wars, ” he says. Disney is also good at marketing to a wide audience, so Kotowski says they will do a good job with another trilogy.
According to Forbes, Lucas will donate most of the money from the transaction to improving education. Much of the cash will go to his project, the George Lucas Educational Foundation, which emphasizes hands-on learning over textbooks and tests.
Disney President Bob Iger says in a video on the Disney Post that “Star Wars: Episode VII” will be in theatres in 2015 and they have plans for movies eight and nine. Theme parks, products, games and TV-projects based on the series will accompany the movies, according to Iger’s video.
Lucas will serve as a creative consultant for the movies but Kathleen Kennedy, a long-time producer and co-chairman with Lucas, will be the new president of Lucasfilm and executive producer of the new “Star Wars” films.
Junior Josh Sarnecky says “Episode IV,” the first film in the “Star Wars” series, was a fun and action-packed adventure movie. The story was about basic good versus evil and nothing was too complicated, so he says he was upset about the deal at first because he did not like the idea of tampering with the plot after the storyline had been resolved, he says.
Sarnecky says he likes Disney and thinks they would be the company to bring fun back to the story and create fuller characters that were lacking in the prequels, Sarnecky says. The original “Star Wars” characters were fun and came off as real people, but in the prequels they were “cardboard cut-outs,” Sarnecky says. They also have good story-telling abilities and understand the need for a strong plot, he says.
“They don’t always make it too complicated, but they always make it enjoyable and I think that’s something that the original ‘Star Wars’ was built on,” he says.
Many directors, such as Brad Bird (“The Incredibles,” “Mission: Impossible—Ghost Protocol”) have been mentioned as possible candidates for the new episodes, Kotowski says, as an opportunity like this will cause many actors, producers and filmmakers to come running and could lead to some great collaboration, he says.
“I think a lot of directors and actors are going to be jumping at it,” Kotowski says. “Then you’re guaranteed at least one really good one out of the three.”
Kotowski likes the idea of each trilogy addressing a different generation of Skywalkers, he says. He would be disappointed if the new movies did not have plots linked to the other six. Having Luke Skywalker grown up and leading a new generation would be a nice balance in the “Star Wars” story, he says.
“I think ultimately you need a reason, like, why are you telling this story,” he says. “Is it worth telling? So hopefully the new ones are.”
Senior Nora Tuke says news sources are saying the writers will develop an original story, which makes her wonder what they’re going to do to the “Star Wars” plot. There are tons of “Star Wars” books with plotlines including a new female lead whom Skywalker marries and Han Solo and Princess Leia having a child, which fans have become attached to, Tuke says.
Tuke says the outcome of the prequels also makes her cautious about the new movies. They were too reliant on graphics and did not focus on developing characters or creating a good script, Tuke says, so she is scared that the new films may have the same outcome and lose the mystery, wonder and excitement that was in the original movies.
“I think that if they’re going to do it well, they would need to learn from their mistakes from the prequels and I think they should at least slightly go off the expanded universe stuff there already is cause people are so attached to it that you’re going to have a lot of pissed-off nerds if you ignore it,” Tuke says.
Kotowski says he would like to see Mark Hamill continue his role as an older Luke Skywalker. Kotowski says the filmmakers should accommodate the actors’ ages and not try to make them appear younger. However, the worst thing would be recasting old characters, he says.
Sarnecky says he would like to avoid bringing back characters because that’s where Disney could risk “messing up” the original story. He hopes they just create characters the audience can cheer for.
Although some of the movies are darker, they all have important values and a factor of playfulness, which can appeal to a wide audience, Kotowski says. The audience has to sit back and enjoy the movies because they do not have a say in what is done, Kotowski says.
“It’s up to Lucas and Disney now,” he says.