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Tag: George Lucas (1-10 of 40)

How 'Strange Magic' kept George Lucas's touch—without George Lucas

Strange Magic had been percolating in George Lucas’s mind since his days working on the Star Wars prequels. Yet when the filmmaker sold his production company to Disney in October of 2012, Lucas also handed over the reins—all of them—on his animated passion project.

“At the point I came on, George was retiring, selling the company, doing all that big stuff, so he had to pull away from it and leave it in our hands,” says Gary Rydstrom, the seven-time Oscar-winning sound designer whom Lucas picked to direct the film in his stead at the tail end of 2012. “He had the story and characters in place, so our job was to make a reality of a film that did what he said he wanted it to do. But his input was imperative—so that’s why it was so important early on to get as much input downloaded from him as possible.” READ FULL STORY

George Lucas really has parted ways with 'Star Wars.' So why are we mad?

Letting go of something you created can’t be easy,. But it must be especially difficult for someone who conjures an entire galaxy in his imagination, only to one day release his grip and leave it in the hands of another generation.

Page Six recently caught up with George Lucas and asked what he thought of that 88-second teaser trailer for J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: The Force Awakens—the first film to be made from the franchise without its creator’s involvement.

His response has fans gasping like Jabba with a chain around his neck. “I don’t know anything about it. I haven’t seen it yet,” Lucas said.


Watch the first trailer for Lucasfilm's 'Strange Magic'

While fans may have to hold out more than a year for the next Star Wars film, Lucasfilm’s animated project Strange Magic is a much shorter wait away. And now, the first trailer is here, meaning we finally get to see what Alan Cumming would look like as a singing bug.


Film and TV engineering society honors George Lucas for tech achievement

Yoda, Darth Vader, and R2-D2 would be significantly lacking without the visual effects that created them—and these creations and innovation in digital cinematography have put George Lucas and his companies on the forefront of technological advancement in film. On Oct. 23, the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers will be giving honorary membership into the society, its highest award, to George Lucas during its Honor and Awards ceremony.

Lucas is the founder of Industrial Light & Magic, sound company THX, and Pixar Animation, which began as a subdivision of Lucasfilm.

This post has been updated to reflect that the ceremony will be held on Oct. 23. EW regrets the error.

Disney acquires rights for future 'Indiana Jones' films

First Star Wars, now Indiana Jones? The Walt Disney Studios announced Friday that it has reached a marketing and distribution agreement with Paramount Pictures for future Indiana Jones films, meaning George Lucas’ two iconic franchises are now firmly in Disney’s hands.

Of course, Disney has owned Indiana Jones production rights since 2012, when the studio acquired LucasFilm. Until now, though, Paramount possessed marketing and distribution rights. Those now belong to Disney, making the process of making and releasing future Indiana Jones films much easier — not to mention more likely. In return for the rights, Paramount will receive “financial participation on any future films.” In other words, the studio will still get an undisclosed cut of the business. Paramount will retain distribution rights for the first four films in the series.

Disney did not reveal plans for any new Indiana Jones installments — and inside sources say not to expect any such announcements in the immediate future. Still, the move is a clear bid to start putting additional whip-cracking archaeology adventures into motion. The question now is whether Harrison Ford, 71, will still be the star, or if Disney plans on rebooting the franchise altogether. Commence your speculation now!

'Star Wars' teaser: The original 1977 trailer that started it all


Star Wars completely re-made the Hollywood landscape after it arrived in theaters in 1977, but it took a little longer for its revolutionary impact to trickle down to other aspects of the movie business… like teaser trailers.

The Star Wars YouTube channel today released the original 1977 teaser that previewed George Lucas’ space adventure to an unsuspecting public. Clearly, audiences were less sophisticated then, but it’s also interesting to see how 20th Century Fox marketed the film early on before it realized exactly what it had on its hands. For starters, there’s no “A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away” introduction. Instead, a narrator intones, “Somewhere in space, this may all be happening right now.” Present tense, people!

Star Wars technically was “the story of a boy, a girl, and a universe,” as the teaser promised, but you don’t get the impression Lucas himself was in the editing bay putting this together. Perhaps he was busy working on the film’s post-production sound — there’s no John Williams music in the teaser, and Darth Vader simply isn’t as menacing without James Earl Jones’ deep voice. Also, Fox was betting on Chewbacca much more than Han Solo.

Laugh if you want, but you can’t say the trailer wasn’t effective, can you? The movie was a smash from the moment it opened. Watch it below: READ FULL STORY

Should we REALLY expect $50 movie tickets? Probably.

These days, going to the movies can feel a lot like going to the airport. Theaters offer all kinds of “premium” upgrades—3-D, IMAX, reserved seating—and all of them send ticket prices soaring. Moviegoers in urban areas regularly spend up to $20 for a single ticket. In fact, a ticket to see Man of Steel in IMAX 3D at a reserved seating show at AMC’s Lincoln Square theater in New York City ran for $23.50 last weekend. But Paramount wants to know if moviegoers would spend even more than that. Last week, the studio and Regal Cinemas announced a $50 “Mega Ticket” for World War Z, which included early admission to the zombie film starring Brad Pitt, plus a whole grab bag of extras (more on that later).

At this rate, will ticket buyers soon pay $100? George Lucas thinks so. While speaking at a June 12 panel at the University of Southern California that included Steven Spielberg, the Star Wars director predicted that Hollywood’s current obsession with glossy blockbusters over art-house fare would cause an industry “implosion.” “There’s eventually going to be a big meltdown,” Lucas said. “You’re going to end up with fewer theaters…. Going to the movies will cost 50 bucks or 100 or 150 bucks, like what Broadway costs today, or a football game.”


Returning to 'Jedi': Ewok down memory lane with Kevin Smith, Seth Green, Chris Hardwick, Eli Roth -- VIDEO

EW approached filmmaker Kyle Newman (Fanboys) with a simple proposition: Will you make us a short film that collects famous voices talking about Star Wars VI: Return of the Jedi and their feelings about the film as it reaches its 30th anniversary?

After sweet-talking him with promises of no money and too-little time, we mentioned that he was our only hope and, weirdly, that worked. The result is  The Return of Return of the Jedi: 30 Years and Counting, which shows elite geeks — among them Kevin Smith, Seth Green, Chris Hardwick, Jaime King, Topher Grace, Fall Out Boy, Eli Roth, and Jason Mewes — revisiting the movie in which tribal Teddy Ruxpins put down an Imperial invasion force with rocks, logs, and other Gilligan’s Island-esque props. Who saw that coming?


Mark Hamill talks the past (and future) of 'Star Wars' at EW's CapeTown Film Fest

This year, EW celebrated May the Fourth with a full day of Return of the Jedi, screening the end of the first (and definitely not last) Star Wars trilogy four times at the Egyptian Theatre. It was the biggest day yet of our first-ever CapeTown Film Fest. Boba Fett and Darth Vader were walking around the foyer. A full-sized Jabba the Hutt held court, accepting photograph requests from admirers.

There were special events throughout the day. After one screening, EW’s Anthony Breznican hosted a Luke Skywalker lookalike competition. From the wings, a new contestant emerged…Mark Hamill, undoubtedly the world’s most talented Luke Skywalker lookalike. The star of the original trilogy stuck around to talk with Breznican about the series’ past…and its future. Below, six important items of conversation from The Once and Future Skywalker. READ FULL STORY

Laura Linney, 'Mad Men' actresses, George Lucas, and more honored by Women in Film

Women in Film is once again honoring women and those who support women in an industry that tends to be more of a boys club. The Los Angeles-based organization announced the recipients of their 2013 Crystal + Lucy Awards this week, and among the honorees are Laura Linney, George Lucas, and Hailee Steinfeld.

The awards will be presented at WIF’s Annual Benefit Gala on Wednesday, June 12. The event will also celebrate the organization’s 40th anniversary.

“Our six honorees illustrate the wide spectrum of creative innovation coming from women, and it’s a privilege to be commemorating all of their successes,” WIF president Cathy Schulman said in a statement. READ FULL STORY

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