George Lucas is now 68 years old and has been talking about retiring for a while. Earlier this year, he named Kathleen Kennedy as the co-chair of Lucasfilm with the goal of having her ultimately replace him. And yesterday, we learned that Lucas has officially retired by selling Lucasfilm and all of his other companies to Disney for $4.05 billion, a deal that has been in the works for a couple of years.
"I've been talking about retiring for several years now," said Lucas. "I wanted to get into another stage of life where I'm not in the film business anymore, where I don't have to run a corporation. I felt that I really wanted to put [Lucasfilm] somewhere in a larger entity that would protect it. Disney is a huge corporation; they have all kinds of capabilities and facilities."
With time Disney will ultimately unveil their plan for Lucasfilm. But for now, we've gathered all the information that's known about the acquisition.
* "Star Wars: Episode 7" will be released in theaters in 2015. It will be the beginning of a trilogy. Episodes 8 and 9 will follow in 2017 and 2019.
* Disney acquired extensive and detailed treatments for the next three movies, as well as treatments for other films. They are already meeting with writers.
* George Lucas will stay on as a consultant for at least "Episode 7."
* Disney also acquired the "Indiana Jones" franchise, but is not planning to make another movie anytime soon due to a legal matter with Paramount Pictures, which distributes the films.
* In the past, Lucas funded the "Star Wars" movies and had 20th Century Fox distribute. Disney will now take over distribution duties, which means that Fox will no longer be involved with the franchise.
* Other Lucasfilm properties like "Willow," "Howard the Duck" and "Red Tails" were also part of the deal. There may be some legal issues there as well, but since "Howard the Duck" was a Marvel character and Disney now owns Marvel, we're one step closer to seeing a remake (anything is possible).
* Disney is planning new live-action and animated "Star Wars" series for Disney XD, ABC, and it's other channels. "Star Wars: The Clone Wars" is currently a top rated show on the Cartoon Network. When that contract expires in a couple of years, the show will move to Disney XD.
* Disney bought Lucasfilm strictly for the "Star Wars" franchise, but got some of the biggest technology companies as part of the deal, including Industrial Light and Magic (ILM), Skywalker Sound, and LucasArts. All three companies will not be touched and will continue doing business as usual.
* 25% of Lucasfilm earnings come from "Star Wars," 25% come from consumer products, 20% from games and 30% from everything else (like ILM).
* Disney plans to expand the focus on "Star Wars" video games, but for mobile and social networks, rather than console.
* According to Disney, the company acquired Pixar because it's a top animated brand for children. It acquired Marvel to get over 5,000 characters for film and television. And it acquired Lucasfilm for "Star Wars," along with merchandising and gaming opportunities.
* Disney is planning to be the sole handler of sales for "Star Wars" toys in order to increase profits overseas, where middlemen take a portion of the earnings. Toys will begin to show up in Disney parks and stores all over the world.
* "Star Wars" is already a big part of amusement parks. But Disney is planning to expand the brand's presence even more.
* In September of 2012, George Lucas' net worth was $3.3 billion. The deal with Disney will increase that sum significantly since he is the sole owner of Lucasfilm.
* Kathleen Kennedy will remain the head of Lucasfilm, but will report to Disney. She was a producer on "ET," "Back to the Future," the first three "Jason Bourne" movies, and most Steven Spielberg films.
They already did that with some kid from the Disney channel: Shia LaBeouf.
sedibuswrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 5:54:08 AM
Yeah, they will be happy doing the Enter The Void type of stuff at the ending, tell to Gaspar Noe to direct the franchise, that will be a good direction aimed at the next generation of good old fellow geek kids.
Couldn't help but laugh when Mrs. Kennedy said now HE could blog & write how THEY would be messing everything up. Sh!t's funny...ironic, LOL.
Although I've never liked Lucas' attitude of his movies towards the SW fans, I admit he gave the world a HUGE gift as SW franchises. As long as Disney respects the material, the SW brand will live on for generations to come.
But also now all new SW & Indiana Jones will have new projects fast tracked to the big screen like fans wanted.
The only down side to this is Disney. It's becoming a monopoly & I HATE Monopolies....unless I pass Go & collect $200. The monopoly starts to decrease it's competition & drive, ultimately homogenizing it's products, like WWE.
But we'll see...generally good news. On a side note, 4.05 billion? Nice little nest egg, huh? Wonder if the deal comes with future roylaties?
And most importantly, da f*ck do you do with more money than God?
minkowskiwrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 8:22:56 AM
Still pretty f*cking awesome news because now we will see some movement on the properties, whereas with Lucas we saw stagnation punctuated with infrequent exploitation, like Lucas was going back to his piggy bank when funds ran low.
I just hope we see good films out of this, because there's no property leadership with Star Wars, really, unless you count Lucas, and I don't, or Kennedy, which is about as good as nothing, whereas with Marvel and Pixar you have a pre-existing body of people invested in maintaining or improving quality.
Dunno. When I think of a Disney Star Wars movies, I think of Pirates and I think of Witch Mountain and I think of John Carter. I don't think Iron Man or Avengers.
minkowskiwrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 8:27:20 AM
"It's becoming a monopoly & I HATE Monopolies"
Disney isn't anything remotely approaching a monopoly, bro, and you can tell because the DoJ and the EU anti-monopoly group didn't even bat an eye. Why? Because Pixar and Marvel and ILM aren't studios, proper.
If Disney bought Sony, or Paramount, THEN you might be able to say Disney is trending towards a monopoly, but as it stands, they are definitely not.
This is no different then when Microsoft bought Bungie.
Indiana jones won't have a sequel for 5+ years to come now, There's no way they're even Concidering that idea now, Why bother right? You've got a potentially Billion+ dollar movie to make before 2015!
So yea, I'm not seeing anything with Indy anytime soon.
Lol could you guys imagine a Howard the Duck Remake? That'd be f*cking hilarious lol..
AndClone wars on Disney XD? Really? I can't see it being as successful if it switches channels..
Yea I get where your coming from, If Disney wants to not f*ck this up they'll have to take a whole new approach to this film rather the way they've been making theirs for years.
You can't slap Pirates kinda look on the Star Wars Films, It'll start a damn riot! Aha :P
Bunny Xwrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 10:15:20 AM
I can see the Indian Jones going the same road as Pirates with over the top production and that whole "amusement ride on film" feeling.
With Star Wars, maybe it'll be given the Tron treatment with a crap load of FX pumped into it. Who kows?
I think it's a smart move by Disney. They have a ton of viewership with owning ABC, ESPN, Marvel, and now LucasArts.
oklahomaerwrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 10:50:57 AM
And the Southpark kids though Indy got raped with the last movie. Just wait till you see how he gets buttf*cked now.
"George Lucas will stay on as a consultant for at least 'Episode 7.'"
pornflywrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 11:34:12 AM
see what happens when GODs not around?
pornflywrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 12:08:16 PM
Soon as God makes his return someone sets a 3year old BassettHound on fire
I would like the super power to be able to catch *ssholes before they commit such atrocities on the helpless.
Like Zorro the Gay Blade without the gay.
minkowskiwrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 12:08:57 PM
I smell an Indian Jones reboot starring the Mickey Mouse Hannah Montana crowd.
Oh wait, no I don't. I just sh*t my pants.
minkowskiwrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 12:13:58 PM
I always forget the a in Indiana...damn Bollywood movies...
vincere01writes: on October 31st, 2012 at 12:56:31 PM
I actually see a Indy reboot happening on tv first. Either a series or mini series. They can test the audience for interest and bring in new actors as well. Probably not for another few years however just so they can dodge the question of using ford again. By then the fans will be more understanding that he can't anymore
vincere01writes: on October 31st, 2012 at 12:58:47 PM
Although....I would not put it past ford to say he will only return to star wars if they let him do one more Indy. Actually that's what I would do if I was him. Realistically this will probably be his last shot at starring in action films.
vincere01writes: on October 31st, 2012 at 1:01:43 PM
Maybe a Indy series as they make the movie with ford and they could have a flashback sequence at the start of the movie showing the new younger actor as his introduction. Then after the show goes a few years and is successfull it can transition into movies
pornflywrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 1:12:07 PM
VINCERE they already tried something similar with the Young Indiana Jones tv show.
IMO an animated series could breathe new life into the francise
The Batman animated series in 92 followed by Superman was the catalyst to all the animated superhero shows on now.
pornflywrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 1:33:08 PM
Im dissappointed,i figured you would have a Howard the Duck opinion.
I wouldnt put it past Disney to release some sort of edited version or a new more kid friendly take on HTD within their parks to spark new interest so they can capitalize on another line of merchandising
Ever since the passing of Walt Disneys brother,be preparedfor a whole new Disney
vincere01writes: on October 31st, 2012 at 1:33:26 PM
@pornfly I definitely think they will go animated route with both Indy and SW. but I also think there would be way to much money left on the table if they don't go live action either in tv or movie format. Animated can be popular but no where near the same as live action would. And I find it very hard to believe Disney spent that much money to ignore the opportunities they new have.
vincere01writes: on October 31st, 2012 at 1:37:07 PM
@pornfly haha. I am probably one of the only people on earth to enjoy Howard the duck. My opinion is I think there is potential for a rebranding of the character to be more kid friendly and come back as a Saturday morning cartoon. Keep somewhat edgy humor in it but enough fun to keep short attention spans
vincere01writes: on October 31st, 2012 at 1:38:06 PM
Or maybe.....as a cgi/live action movie a La Garfield
funny bit of trivia involving howard the duck and disney:
howard's original design had no pants, just like donald duck, but disney threatened legal action due to the resemblance. so marvel redesigned howard to wear a full business suit complete with trousers.
pornflywrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 1:42:15 PM
I was 12 when my parents took me to see HTD
pornflywrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 1:45:47 PM
Disney trivia is always entertaining (to me)
My mother retired from DisneyWorld after 30years and is pissed they came out with a Disney Secrets book
pornflywrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 1:46:48 PM
vincere01writes: on October 31st, 2012 at 1:49:16 PM
I'm also a little partial to it because I'm also a big back to the future fan and lea Thompson was in HTD
pornflywrites: on October 31st, 2012 at 1:53:01 PM
Dennis Quaid nailed that while filming Jaws3
Donyae 420writes: on October 31st, 2012 at 2:32:08 PM