Er, “good” news: Disney to buy Lucasfilm, produce new “Star Wars” movie by 2015; Update: I have story treatments for three more episodes, says Lucas

posted at 4:56 pm on October 30, 2012 by Allahpundit

I expected to spend my shift today blogging about a disaster. I was right.

No, seriously, though, this is worth it if only for the material it’ll generate for the Red Letter Media guy.

Under the terms of the agreement and based on the closing price of Disney stock on October 26, 2012, the transaction value is $4.05 billion, with Disney paying approximately half of the consideration in cash and issuing approximately 40 million shares at closing. The final consideration will be subject to customary post-closing balance sheet adjustments…

“For the past 35 years, one of my greatest pleasures has been to see Star Wars passed from one generation to the next,” said George Lucas, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Lucasfilm. “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.”…

Ms. Kennedy will serve as executive producer on new Star Wars feature films, with George Lucas serving as creative consultant. Star Wars Episode 7 is targeted for release in 2015, with more feature films expected to continue the Star Wars saga and grow the franchise well into the future.

Romney’s poll surge in October has suppressed my eeyore immune system and left me dangerously vulnerable to optimism, so let me take it to critical condition by co-signing this Lileks tweet:

Yeah, even after the prequels, I don’t think it’s a matter of “Star Wars” being irredeemable. It’s Lucas who’s irredeemable, and Lucas is now stepping back and handing over the keys. That’s … good, no? Disney being Disney, the danger that they’ll go full Jar Jar is clear and present, but “Star Wars” fans will spend the next three years screechily drumming it into their skulls not to do that. Given how universally loathed the prequels are, I expect Disney will want to make a statement by resurrecting the series with something much different, and better, than what came before. Nolan’s Batman series will hopefully/probably be a model for stripping away the grotesque excesses and getting back to the spirit that made the originals compelling. But I don’t know, maybe I’m giving them too much credit. Ben Domenech just tweeted a photo from this series and now I wonder if even Plinkett can save this.

Exit advice for Robert Iger and Kathleen Kennedy, on behalf of everyone everywhere: Put the Pixar people in charge.

Update: The first thing I thought of when I heard the news. Click the image to watch.

Update: Plinkett is on red alert.

Update: Lucas helpfully volunteers that he has story treatments prepared for not one, not two, but three more episodes, which I guess means there’s enough “magic” left in the prequel bottle to get us through Episode IX.

Dude, it’s game over.

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You want Star Wars to be great again? This is what you do: Go find Joss Whedon and ask him for the names of any of his assistant writing staff from Buffy/Firefly that he’s not employing right now and have them write the script. Then thank George profoundly for his input before dropping any paper he hands you right into an active volcano so that no one will ever see what he wrote. Can you do that Disney?

Browncoatone on October 30, 2012 at 7:41 PM

Be careful. Buffy had a good writing staff, and turned out some absolutely brilliant scripts. But a lot of that was due to the influence of Joss Whedon, and when he stepped back quality noticeably declined. Please do not let Marti Noxon anywhere near the Star Wars franchise. Pretty please.

Shump on October 31, 2012 at 1:53 PM

How is anyone seeing it as news that Lucas has three more script treatments? There were always nine episodes prepared. The ones not turned into screenplays were episodes 7-9 in the story chronology. By the time they were into filming episode 2, the Star Wars novel franchise, closely controlled by Lucas regardless of the disparity of the various authors, had given away the majority of the future details of the story, and it became pointless to try and thrill audiences with a story they would already know. There was simply not enough to gain by spending the energy on those films.

That hasn’t changed. Even Joss Whedon can’t put the genie back into the bottle. Without crafting a completely new storyline (which would in turn outrage the purists who have real all of the novels), there is diminished draw. Add to that the reduced trust in Disney over the years, and there isn’t much to be positive about over this prospect.

Freelancer on November 1, 2012 at 7:44 AM

Hey, it’s Disney. They aren’t gong to mess around with some Japanese story arc. I betcha they do a Star Wars remake of one of their old favorites. Lindsey Lohan is between gigs. She could do a reprise of her Parent trap role. Except Star Wars Parent Trap would have her meet her evil Sith twin at summer camp. The two plucky kids switch places with the Jedi twin going home to daddy to rule the universe as father and son and the Sith twin goes home to the moisture farms of Tatoine with mommy. Eventually, the deception is uncovered and hilarity ensues. Get Justin Bieber to do the music and you have an instant hit!

Lily on January 15, 2013 at 2:06 AM

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