back to article George Lucas: 'No more Star Wars'

George Lucas has announced his retirement from the movie business. The director blurted the news to the New York Times in an extensive interview centred on Lucasfilm's upcoming flick, Red Tails. "I’m retiring," Lucas told the paper. "I’m moving away from the business, from the company, from all this kind of stuff." While …


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  1. Richard Wharram

    What a tosser.

    If you don't like people criticising you for fucking up your old franchises then either don't do it or ignore them by sticking great wads of cash in your ears.

    Personally I'd rather watch the RedLetterMedia reviews of the Star Wars prequels and Indy 4 than the movies themselves. At least Lucas gave us all something to moan about.

    1. Thomas 4


      I'll be eternally grateful to the man that made A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. I won't miss the man he became, corrupted by his own self-importance and blind arrogance.

      1. Ru

        "the man that made A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi"

        TESB was directed by Irvin Kershner, and ROTJ by Richard Marquand. I found both to be superior works to ANH, Lucas' major contribution. I seem to recall that Lucas was not a fant of TESB at all, which in my opinion was by far the best film of the series. But there you go.

      2. steward

        Except for Jar Jar...

        1, 2, and 3 were excellent, in the finest tradition of science fiction: disguised, entertaining political commentary. I'm just sorry he never made 7-9.

        1. Darryl

          7 of 9 was hot, wasn't she?

          Oh, you mean Episodes 7 - 9. Sorry, wrong franchise.

          Other than Jar Jar, the only other problem was with the cheesy reasons for Anakin to become Vader... He just looks like a pouty teenager whining because they won't make him a Jedi Master yet. That and Hayden Christensen's atrocious acting. I especially like his "I'm mad" face, where he tilts his head down and scowls under his eyebrows at people.

      3. DZ-Jay

        Re: *sigh*

        I'll be eternally grateful to the man that made Star Wars. I loved that movie, and I still watch it every now and then. What is this "A New Hope" you speak off? Is that one of those episode-somethings?

      4. Jim in Hayward

        Could not have written it better. Original 3 were superb. Then greed set it and stupid CGI tricks ensued. I know some folks that bought the first 3 every time they were re-released.

        Good riddance Lucas!

    2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      RedLetterMedia citation

      A guy called William Shakesman once said:

      'Brevity is the Soul of Wit.'

      It means stop wasting my time. You keep it nice and simple.

      [Shows Lucas inspecting a large set of Star Wars figurines of Goonghas etc.]

      I said STOP IT!

    3. tmTM

      Lucas whines like a bitch

      For someone so wealthy he seems to get his knickers in a twist when some nobody criticises his work. of course you'll have criticism, it's the movie business and you're catering to the die hard geeks who are the worst for having a gripe.

      If he can't be content with having mountains of cash then he can FRO.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up


      Undoubtedly the funniest and most entertaining films reviews anywhere.

    5. Lord Midas

      Han shot first goddamnit!!!

      Really, I didn't mind his changes (though Han walking on CG Jabba out the Falcon, and Hayden replacing Sebastian Shaw at the end of TROTJ, were pretty wank). But having Greedo shoot first in the Cantina was a travesty.

      Han shot first, and that's all there is to it. Han shooting first made him a bad-ass no-shit-taking muthafucka. He blasted that green git, gets up, flips the bartender a coin then just moseys on outta there. Cool motherfucker.

      Greedo shoots first makes him look slow and pussy like. You ALL agree with this.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "kind of like ‘The Color Purple,’ only in airplanes"

    WTF is that supposed to mean?

    He just made this movie and that's how he describes it? Kinda makes you wonder if that was the pitch too.

    1. Anonymous Coward 101

      I've read the plot synopsis about The Color Purple, and I am mystified as to what that film has to do with aeroplanes. Do the pilots rape their daughters and beat their wives, then fly their aeroplanes?

      1. TeeCee Gold badge

        "I've read the plot synopsis about The Color Purple...."

        Ah, I reckon you've gone an extra mile too far there. I doubt the comparison goes any further than; "It's quite arty and about black people, just like that other arty film about black people.". You're highlighting the sort of picky details that get thrashed out in script conferences.

    2. Tim

      Wait, what?!!

      "Kind of like 'The Color Purple', only in airplanes" and "like a Tyler Perry movie, only without jokes."

      As far as I can see the only two things those two examples have in common are... lots of black actors. Have I missed some deep, film-school-nerd connection or is he really trying to say that he's made a movie for black people without mentioning race?

      His quotation works elsewhere, too: I suppose the Prequels were "Like a Star Wars movie, only without a heart, some spectacle and a sense of fun and adventure."

      His work is a sad example of what happens to great artists when they don't die young.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        TeeCee / Tim

        On further thought/review this might just be one of the most racist quotes I've ever read. Thanks for pointing that out.

        Coming from the genius behind Jar Jar Binks maybe we shouldn't be surprised :P

  3. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Before he retires can he give us our memory of Star Wars instead of his recently contrived vision of it?

    1. Danny 14 Silver badge


      You dont *have* to watch or buy the new versions. I have the trilogy on VHS and bought the trilogy on DVD when it came out. Thats about it. Nothing forced me to watch episode 1, it was all my own fault.

    2. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: our memory

      You've already got *your* memory and neither you nor Lucas can have *my* memory.

      Furthermore, I suspect that seeing it for the first time, as a child, probably isn't something that can be burned to disc. The closest you can get is to have kids of your own and watch them whilst they watch something modern.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        > watch them whilst they watch something modern.

        You don't have to watch something modern. I watched the Back to the Future trilogy with my kids (6, 10, 12) before Christmas and they absolutely loved it (as did I, again). The 6 year old now has a skateboard and a poncho because of it!

        Similarly ET and the Indiana Jones films have been popular, as have Laurel and Hardy ("This is as funny as /anything/").

        1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

          Re: something modern

          With hindsight, that was either the wrong phrase or not nearly a long enough phrase.

          To audiences of the time, Star Wars was mind-blowing. Not high-brow art, but quite mind-blowing in terms of sensory experience. The special effects were so pervasive that they ceased to attract the attention. There was hardly a scene in the last 15 minutes that wasn't blue-screened several layers deep. (Blue-screen meant something else then.) That was new and even without hindsight the audiences of the day knew they were looking at the first of something new rather than more of the same.

          Kids today can't watch Star Wars and have that experience, because the effects (even after George has finished fiddling) aren't "vastly better than anything else they've ever seen before". (Maybe if you looked them up from birth and only let them watch Star Trek, 2001, Buck Rogers and Forbidden Planet for their first 10 years.)

          *Maybe* there has been some more recent film that has had the same sensory impact, in which case there might be "something modern" you could show to your children to see the same effect. Then again, maybe not. I can't think of one.

          1. Andy Fletcher

            Careful Ken

            I would imagine the MPAA already have people working on memory removal devices for all cinema exits. Don't encourage them.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      Ignore Danny & Ken, I know what you mean, and I'm sure plenty of others do too.

      What, I suspect, you and I want is the original movies released in *unedited* form. Without all the stupid colour changing/Annaking overlaying bullshit.

      3 DVDs. As close to the original cinema edits as possible. Thanks. This is all.

      1. DZ-Jay

        Re: @Giles


        They exist, but not as the main attraction. The DVD set of the "Special Edition" versions (wtih "all the stupid colour changing/Annaking overlaying bullshit") contains on each disc the original, theatrical release of the movies as a "bonus feature."

        These are gritty, without the benefits of the re-mastering and restoration performed during the 1990s. However, they also are devoid of extraneous embellishments or extra scenes, just as you saw them in the theater, with a mono soundtrack and all.


        1. Tom 35 Silver badge

          From NTSC Laser Disc masters

          They are from the first remaster but Lucas ordered the film destroyed after they did the SE so the only copy they had was the Laser Disc Masters. Letter box, composite artefacts and all.

          I own the Laser Discs and the DVDs actually look a little better, but if they had kept the film they could have done a proper DVD or even a Blu-Ray.

        2. Thomas 4


          Yup - I just bought a set of those DVDs.

          .....wait, did I just funnel even *more* of my money into Lucas' gaping wallet? Goddamn it.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    thank goodness for that

    Stop pissing on my childhood, beardy.

    ..says it all.

    (I think Bioware are doing a better job than Lucas these days, SWTOR is kinda fun)

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

  5. Peter Gordon

    Too bad

    he made those terrible, terrible prequals before quitting.

    1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: those terrible, terrible prequals

      Perhaps someone else could make the three films that the prequels should have been. They'd be so different from Lucas' versions that I doubt copyright would be an issue.

      1. Ru
        Thumb Up

        I can heartily recommend

        The "Lego Starwars" games that covered the prequel trilogy. All of the good parts of the films, minus all of the crap parts (eg, the dialogue). The developers even managed to make Jar-Jar likeable and useful.

        Seriously, as a work of silent cinema (and a bit of button-bashing) they're not at all bad.

    2. Field Marshal Von Krakenfart

      "Lucas also revealed his disappointment of being attacked by Star Wars fans, hitting out at those unhappy... ...three prequels"

      "Too bad he made those terrible, terrible prequals before quitting".

      Hmmmppppp, My memory of it that there was always be 9 films going to, 3 trilogies. This story on wookieepedia see:-

      1. fandom Silver badge

        Third trilogie

        After making the last trilogy he said he was not going to do the third one about the children of the skywalkers. Then he let novel writers continue the story, starting with Timothy Zhan 'Heir of the empire'

  6. 404 Silver badge

    I call BS

    I have a Star Wars Trilogy VHS set with interviews with Lucas saying "He'd never release SW on DVD because it was too much work and he wanted to move on".

    Money talks and bullshit walks imo.


    1. steward

      he didn't think anyone would ever need an HDD with a larger capacity than 10 MB.

      Times change.

      Technology changes.

      Many people don't even HAVE a VCR anymore. Tried shopping for one lately or finding any media for it other than on eBay, the online junk bin of the world?

      1. 404 Silver badge

        Here ya go buddy



  7. Anonymous Coward 101


    “I’m saying: ‘Fine. But my movie, with my name on it, that says I did it, needs to be the way I want it’.”

    There are obviously lots of people associated with the making of a movie, more than just the writer and director. It is not just George Lucas's movie. In particular, the editor has a big role in cutting stuff from the film that he feels are not necessary.

    Read this review from Roger Ebert about the film The Brown Bunny, which will show the importance of the editor:

    I suggest that if a good editor was allowed to work on the prequels they would not be so poor. The Phantom Menace would still not be a good film, but much of the mince that cluttered the film would be left on the cutting room floor.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "Read this review from Roger Ebert about the film The Brown Bunny, which will show the importance of the editor:"

      Errrrrrr..... no

    2. Richard Wharram

      But the plot...

      Would NEVER make sense. Who's doing what and why now? No amount of editing can get past that.

      Or the dull characters.

      Or the 'too much going on' ending.

      I suppose they could cut Jar Jar though.

      1. Anonymous Coward 101


        Correct, the film would never make sense. But a good editor would trim out some of the more incoherent and unnecessary passages. For example, did Liam Nesson have to explain to Anakin what 'metachlorens' were? What about some of the drivel in the senate?

        The youtube vid you linked to was excellent, and has reminded me of the rubbishness of the film.

  8. Magnus_Pym

    Red Tails?

    If he wants to make a film about Black Pilots he have looked at the amazing eal life story of Eugene Ballard. But no he decided to make "kind of like ‘The Color Purple,’ only in airplanes"

    I wonder if it is not really kinda like 'Start Wars' but in airplanes.

  9. jolly


    I was looking forward to Howard the Duck 2

    1. thefutureboy


      He said he was going back to art house film making so Howard the Duck 2 must be his first project.

      1. Darryl
        Thumb Down

        Re: Howard the Duck

        As long as it's not a remake on THX 1138. What a horrible movie. I remember seeing the box at the video rental place and seeing "From the maker of Star Wars" and I thought Great!

        What a letdown.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Alderan shot first

    Thank the maker

  11. NoneSuch
    Thumb Up

    Good Luck George...

    His imagination, focus, vision and drive brought innovative classics to the screen and opened the door for the modern age of cinema.

    Director, producer, entrepreneur, man of vision and integrity. Lucasfilm was only one of his many successful companies. Any missteps were few and far between and credit where credit is due, at least he was willing to try different approaches. The successes revolutionized the way films are produced today.

    Lucas is a power house of talent that can take single credit for resurrecting the US film industry in the late 70's. The critics and nay-sayers will always exist, but their niggles pale in comparison to his overall accomplishments.

    Before you criticize the man, walk a mile in his shoes and see how successful you would be. He has earned the right to walk away from the brilliant world he created and very few have the right to castigate him for that decision. Very few indeed.

    Good Luck in all future endeavours Mr. Lucas. Thank you for making this gray world just a little bit better than you found it.

    1. Richard Wharram

      I think... credit Mr Lucas with too much of the success from Star Wars, which after all was just his idea to put an Akira Kurasawa film in space. As time has shown, without Gary Kurtz, Lucas makes average to poor films. Shame on you for swallowing Lucas' favourite myth that Star Wars' success was down to his own unique and original vision :)

      1. Field Marshal Von Krakenfart


        Hmmmppphhh No, the 1980 film "battle beyond the stars" that you are thinking of, that is. Yeesssssss. As the hero the one with john-boy walton.

        1. Richard Wharram


          No, I'm thinking of Star Wars. Star Wars was heavily influenced by The Hidden Fortress as Lucas admits. Battle Beyond The Stars was one of many films loosely based on Kurasawa's Seven Samurai. There's elements of many of Kurasawa's films in Star Wars though. Like most film-makers, Lucas is a fan.

    2. The Jon

      Go on, i'll bite

      >> can take single credit for resurrecting the US film industry in the late 70's

      So: Scorsese, Ford-Coppola, Friedkin, De Palma and Spielberg were doing fuck all then?


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