Disney Acquires Lucasfilm
So, this happened today. Disney purchased Lucasfilm for a cool four billion dollars. Link
Under the deal, Disney will acquire ownership of Lucasfilm, a leader in entertainment, innovation and technology, including its massively popular and “evergreen” Star Wars franchise and its operating businesses in live action film production, consumer products, animation, visual effects, and audio post production. Disney will also acquire the substantial portfolio of cutting-edge entertainment technologies that have kept audiences enthralled for many years. Lucasfilm, headquartered in San Francisco, operates under the names Lucasfilm Ltd., LucasArts, Industrial Light & Magic, and Skywalker Sound, and the present intent is for Lucasfilm employees to remain in their current locations.
First off, this is without doubt the biggest Star Wars headline, probably ever. But we were treated to another bombshell. A new trilogy is also in the works: Episodes 7, 8, and 9. Star Wars fans all over are no doubt still stunned by the news. I know my ears are still ringing. There are so many questions to ask, so many possibilities to ponder over.
- How could Lucas just hand it all over?
- Four billion dollars? Isn’t that CHEAP for Lucasfilm and all of it’s divisions? ILM seems like it would be a four billion dollar company by itself.
- Who is now in control of the creative direction of the Star Wars franchise?
- What will happen to the current stories, including Episodes I-VI, the Expanded Universe, The Clone Wars, and all other Star Wars media in the works?
- What will happen to the other companies currently involved with Star Wars, including Random House, Dark Horse, etc…
Basically, what happens now?
There has been a mix of reactions today; many are dazed, others say they saw this coming, but I think everyone was surprised somehow. I mean, love or hate George Lucas, he has always been there. Perhaps this is strange, but I think that fact provided some sort of security that Star Wars would be ok. And perhaps security in general. I think it’s safe to say that many treat Star Wars like a security blanket. Others aren’t quite so attached, but still view it as a cherished hobby. Now, the future of Star Wars is definitely uncertain. Change is here. Many are afraid of change.
Bottom line: Business is business. Disney is business. Lucasfilm, and thus by extension Star Wars, is business. That is reality. George Lucas knows this. However, many fans don’t want to think of Star Wars as a business that can be sold. Star Wars was safe within Lucasfilm. Now that Disney has it, just how safe is it? How many hands will be allowed to work on it?
If you’re interested in George Lucas’s take on all this, watch the video below:
George does seem to indicate that he’ll continue to advise on some things. And there do seem to be positive vibes about handing the company over to Disney. I, for one, am trying to keep a neutral, positive outlook. Disney isn’t going anywhere, and hopefully the Star Wars as we know it isn’t either.
One thing is for sure: We’re about to see a brand new Star Wars. New movies, characters, books, toys, everything. It is exciting, but definitely nerve-wracking.
Disney and Star Wars by Andrew