Why George Lucas Moved On From Star Wars

Darth Vader melted helmetBy Danny F. Santos (doddleNEWS)

George Lucas is a bit of a polarizing figure for Star Wars fans. He’s the man that created the universe that so many of us love, but he was able to afford to do what he wanted, he financed and directed the prequel trilogy.

I think Simon Pegg said it best when he explained to New York Daily Express that:

“I don’t really have any respect for anyone who thinks (the prequels) are good. (They’re) a monumental misunderstanding of what the (original) three films are about. It’s an exercise in utter infanticide … (like) George Lucas killing his kid.”

Ouch. It seems words like that ultimately struck a nerve with Lucas. He explained to Vanity Fair that it was criticism which made him step away from the franchise.

“You go to make a movie and all you do is get criticized. And people try to make decisions about what you’re going to do before you do it. And it’s not much fun. You can’t experiment. You can’t do anything, you have to do it a certain way.”

When Lucas sold his company to Disney in late October 2012, we know a treatment went with it for Episodes VII to IX. Even though he’s been attached as a creative consultant, he says that he has nothing to do with Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

“The issue was ultimately, they looked at the stories and they said, ‘We want to make something for the fans.’ People don’t actually realize it’s actually a soap opera and it’s all about family problems – it’s not about spaceships. So they decided they didn’t want to use those stories, they decided they were going to do their own thing so I decided, ‘Fine.’

“They weren’t that keen to have me involved anyway. But at the same time, I said if I get in there I’m just going to cause trouble. Because they’re not going to do what I want them to do. And I don’t have the control to do that anymore. All I would do is muck everything up. So I said, ‘Okay, I will go my way, and I’ll let them go their way.’”

I know that Lucas complained about being criticized, but I have to take issue with this statement. Star Wars: A New Hope didn’t have any familial soap opera elements in it at all. It probably wasn’t until Empire Strikes Back that those elements were being laid down, and that only came to be in the final act.

He also likened moving on from Star Wars to a breakup:

“When you break up with somebody, the first rule is no phone calls. The second rule, you don’t go over to their house and drive by to see what they’re doing. The third one is you don’t show up at their coffee shop and say you are going to burn it… You just say ‘Nope, gone, history, I’m moving forward.'”

Lucas also spoke about his biggest fear for the series going forward:

“The Force doesn’t get muddled into a bunch of gobbledygook.”

Remember what I said about me reluctantly criticizing Lucas just a paragraph above? I’m going to just do that one more time in this article with a single word: Midi-chlorians.

While we may never know what Lucas originally had planned, director JJ Abrams promises that the spirit of Star Wars is still in the upcoming film. Here’s what he told EW:

“Before I showed up, it was already something that Disney had decided they wanted to go a different way with. But the spirit of what he wrote, both in those pages and prior, is everything that this movie is built upon.”

Star Wars: The Force Awakens will premiere in theaters on December 18, 2015.

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