By: Dominic Jones
A little more than two years ago George Lucas shocked the world when he announced he was selling Lucasfilm to Disney and that Star Wars Episode VII would be released in 2015. Many assumed that the Disney sale was what got Lucas working on the new films, but apparently there's more to it than that. Lucas spoke with USA Today recently about his upcoming animated film Strange Magic, which will be released later this month, and naturally the topic of Star Wars was brought up. Lucas revealed that he originally intended to make Episode VII himself and then sell his company to someone else to make the rest of the trilogy based on his outlines.
According to USA Today,
Lucas already started to develop the next three Star Wars films, but he knew a third trilogy was a 10-year commitment at least. He at first expected to finish Episode VII, release it in May 2015 and then sell the company afterward.
But Disney expressed interest and came along at the right moment, Lucas says. "It's better for me to get out at the beginning of a new thing and I can just remove myself."
As for why Lucas was willing to sell and didn't want to make another ten year commitment is his young daughter. Lucas and his new wife Melody Hobson's daughter Everest Lucas was born via surrogacy in June 2013 and Lucas wants to be able to spend as much time with his young child as possible. He told USA Today, "The time is more important to me than the money."
Lucas also touched upon his one regret from his time on Star Wars and why he's excited about the next film. He said,
"The only thing I really regret about Star Wars is the fact I never got to see it — I never got to be blown out of my seat when the ship came over the screen. The next one, I'll be able to enjoy it like anybody else."
I don't think any of us can blame Lucas for wanting to have the same experience we've all had as a result of his work and hopefully JJ Abrams and crew can make a film that gives Lucas that experience. Also, I think it's fascinating to get this insight into how Lucas originally intended to make the sequel trilogy. We'll never know what a George Lucas directed Episode VII will look like or how different Lucas' vision for the sequels is from what we see on screen beginning December 18th, 2015 (ok, maybe we'll find out the latter 30 years from now in a "Making Of The Force Awakens" book).
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