Disney Owns Star Wars and ILM Now

In a surprise move to most of the world, it turns out that Disney has bought Lucasfilm and all that the company encompasses. This move has far-reaching consequences for special effects giant Industrial Light and Magic and the Star Wars franchise as well.

Disney acquired Lucasfilm for 4.05 billion dollars, and in that deal has acquired all right to Lucas’ effects house ILM and the Star Wars brand. As a result, Disney has announced the intention to release a Star Wars film in 2015. Lucas has this to say about giving Star Wars over:

“For the past 35 years, one of my greatest pleasures has been to see Star Wars passed from one generation to the next. It’s now time for me to pass Star Wars on to a new generation of filmmakers. I’ve always believed that Star Wars could live beyond me, and I thought it was important to set up the transition during my lifetime. I’m confident that with Lucasfilm under the leadership of Kathleen Kennedy, and having a new home within the Disney organization, Star Wars will certainly live on and flourish for many generations to come. Disney’s reach and experience give Lucasfilm the opportunity to blaze new trails in film, television, interactive media, theme parks, live entertainment, and consumer products.”

The blatant mention of consumer products are concerned makes us a little queasy, not that it’s surprising….

This is an interesting move on Lucas’ part, considering how obsessively he has tweaked the original Star Wars trilogy since 1997’s Special Edition. It raises a lot of questions about the stipulations of this acquisition—does Disney have the right to release the original cut of the Star Wars trilogy without Lucas’ go ahead? And as for this new film, will it be set after Return of the Jedi? During the Clone Wars cartoon? In another era entirely? While we want to believe the best of Disney, since they’ve been turning out largely acceptable movies of late, we’re forced to think of their mandate once they acquired Pixar; i.e. lots of sequels. For just about everything. We certainly hope Star Wars doesn’t go down the same road for naught.

Stubby the Rocket is the Tor.com mascot. Stubby just wants a BluRay of Empire that features Boba Fett’s original voice.


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