George Lucas helped to direct a small part of Solo

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From Entertainment Weekly:

“[…] Apart from having the means and desire to help a production in trouble, there was another factor that drew [director Ron Howard] in to Solo. “George [Lucas] is like a big brother mentor in my life,” Howard says.

Even though Lucas sold his company to Disney and is no longer actively involved in the films, the legacy of the character and the new slate of movies meant something to Howard.

“I actually felt like it was gonna be a very unique, creative experience for me. It happened to fit into my life, and I liked the adventure of tackling challenges, and this was certainly gonna be a hell of a challenge — and it has been,” Howard says. “But an exciting one.”

He got a helping hand from old friends, too. Ford spoke with Howard and gave him some insights into the character that he typically begrudges curious Star Wars fans.

Then, just as shooting resumed, Howard got a visit from another familiar face: The guy who first told him about this galaxy, a long time ago.

Summer, 2017:

“He came by to visit the first day that I picked up shooting. George and his wife, Melody, came by to pay a little set visit. It made me feel great,” Howard says.

Lucas, the father of Star Wars who handed it off to another generation to become the grandfather of Star Wars, even gave him some advice that sounds straight out of the Obi-Wan playbook.

“He told me just trust my instincts, you know?” Howard says with a laugh. “I know he kind of fundamentally feels like, first and foremost, [these films are] sort of for 12-year-old boys, and yet even he knows that it’s grown so far beyond that, and the fans have grown with the series in a great, important way. So he didn’t offer a lot of advice except, ‘You’ll get this.’”

That brief set visit became a longer one. And a longer one.

“He had intended to just kind of stop by and say hi, and he stayed five hours,” Kennedy says. “There’s even one little moment in a scene that — I can’t tell you what, sorry — but in the scene on the Millennium Falcon where George said, ‘Why doesn’t Han just do this.’”

In other words, George Lucas helped direct a small part of Solo.

“It actually is a funny little bit that will probably get a laugh,” Kennedy says. “And Ron happened to be by the monitor and not inside the Falcon and he goes, ‘Oh that’s a great idea,’ and ran in and said, ‘George wants us to do this.’ So that was pretty cool. I think George felt pretty great about that. He could revisit these characters, and I think he felt so comfortable, obviously with Ron being there, that it was just fun for him.

Lucas’ final wisdom for his old American Graffiti actor: “just enjoy this.” […]”

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WIRED says George Lucas ‘failed’ to bring women and POC into Star Wars as ‘fully-developed characters’

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From ‘The WIRED Guide to Star Wars‘:

“The Disney-era plans for the overall brand come at a fraught time, culturally. [Kathleen] Kennedy explicitly set out to bring women and people of color into the franchise as fully-developed characters, something people rightly criticized [George] Lucas for failing at.”


Can WIRED introduce us to the people who think Leia Organa, Lando Calrissian, Padmé Amidala, Schmi Skywalker or Mace Windu are minor characters?

George Lucas decided the Stormtroopers weren’t clones during the development of the live-action TV series

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From StarWars.com:

“[…] Now, veteran writers Ryder Windham and Adam Bray take us all-troopers all-the-time with Stormtroopers: Beyond the Armor.

Released last October, this in-depth guide, produced by becker&mayer! and published by Harper Design, traces the real world history of each iteration of stormtrooper and clone trooper (and many of their related military personnel and equipment) from concept to filming costume to in-universe background and beyond. […]

StarWars.com: By documenting the total story of troopers as a story element in the saga, and as an icon of Star Wars in our world, you also are giving a history of Star Wars moviemaking, merchandising, and cultural impact, from the original trilogy through the prequels, TV series, and into the Disney era with the sequels and standalones. What in this overall history really stands out for you? What cool tidbits of information really amazed you?

Adam Bray: I was surprised how much influence Hasbro has had on recent Star Wars animation, from initiating Tartakovsky’s Clone Wars series, to the classic Kenner action figures as inspiration for the character designs in Star Wars Rebels. I was also fascinated how George Lucas’ ideas about who stormtroopers were actually changed over time. It wasn’t until he began conceptualizing a Star Wars TV show that Lucas decided the stormtroopers would be normal humans rather than clones.

George Lucas’ artistic choices about how to portray the militaries of the Republic and Empire were also fascinating. The diversity in personalities within the clone army versus the uniformity of troopers and officers within the Empire (despite no longer being clones) is quite a contrast. The Republic valued diversity, and so the clones were allowed freedom of personal expression. The Empire, on the other hand, was a repressive regime that demanded order through conformity, or sameness. […]”


Reminder from Wookieepedia:

“Star Wars: Underworld is the working title of a proposed live-action television series that would be set during the timespan between the films Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith and Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope. George Lucas first announced the series at 2005’s Celebration III. Over the next few years, a variety of writers were hired, over fifty scripts were written and art designers worked on visualizing Lucas’ ideas. However, in 2010, Lucas announced that the series was on hold due to budget constraints. […]”

ComicBook.com: The Special Editions brought ‘many positive changes to the saga’

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From Comicbook.com:

“In the mid-’90s, Star Wars creator George Lucas embarked on an ambitious project, as he revisited the films that earned him his legacy and made a variety of changes to them. 20 years later, these “Special Edition” versions of the Star Wars trilogy are still highly debated pieces of film history, as fans contest the decisions Lucas made with his films […]

Many fans may dismiss the Special Edition trilogy, but these updated versions of the film brought along with it many positive changes to the saga.

Check out why we think it’s important to honor the tweaks George Lucas made to the original Star Wars for its Special Edition!

SLIDE 1/7 – CULTURAL RELEVANCE

The original films were events that captured the attention of almost the whole world, creating a global sensation whose effects are still felt today. For audiences who grew up in the ’80s and ’90s, the only way to witness the films was on the small scale. […]

Lucasfilm was so aware of this fact, that the first teasers for the Special Edition featured ships flying out of a television set to showcase how much more effective the film is on the big screen.

Additionally, the release of the Special Editions helped reignite interest in the series two years prior to The Phantom Menace landing in theaters, building the anticipation for that film.

SLIDE 2/7 – BOX OFFICE DOMINATION

[…] Over the course of its run, the Star Wars Special Edition ended up taking in nearly $140 million domestically, helping it earn the film a domestic grand total of over $460 million.

The film might not have enjoyed its reign as the top-grossing domestic release for too long, as 1997’s Titanic would eventually go on to earn over $600 million domestically, but the Special Editions helped show that audiences were just as interested as ever to head to the theater for a Star Wars film.

SLIDE 3/7 – DELETED SCENES
[…] Lucas’ incorporation of deleted scenes showed audiences our first glimpses of new footage since the original films’ debut, which helped satiate our anticipation for the upcoming prequels.

One of the deleted scenes that was edited back into the Special Edition of Star Wars featured Luke reuniting with his old friend Biggs, which helped pay off Luke’s complaints earlier in the film about all of his friends leaving home to become pilots. The brief interaction helped remind audiences that Luke never anticipated he’d get thrown into the Rebellion, but merely felt a calling that couldn’t be ignored.

Another deleted scene featured Han interacting with Jabba the Hutt, which was filmed before Jabba was fully conceptualized. The scene establishes the connection between the two characters and, while not pertinent to enjoy Return of the Jedi, the scene serves as an example of how a filmmaker’s ideas for a character can change over the years.

SLIDE 4/7 – SCOPE OF THE STORY

When the film was originally created, digital effects were incredibly rudimentary, with Lucas’ work helping pave the way for other filmmakers, effectively revolutionizing cinema. Despite the advanced ’70s techniques, CGI had evolved drastically in 20 years, allowing Lucas to expand the scale of the saga.

A notable change to the Star Wars Special Edition was the establishing shots of Mos Eisley as Obi-Wan and Luke departed on their mission. The updated film showed off a variety of new creatures and vehicles, as well as show off the size of Mos Eisley and the spaceport’s bizarre architecture.

Much of the film features interior locations, whether it be various rooms on the Death Star, cockpits or cantinas, making the film feel somewhat contained, with these new establishing shots helping show off how large this universe was. […]

SLIDE 6/7 – LUKE’S LANDSPEEDER

While it’s easy to look back fondly at the original Star Wars and romanticize many of the film’s components, we often overlook that there are distracting shortcomings due to lack of technical solutions.

To convey a speeder that hovered across the terrain with ease, the film took an incredibly lo-fi approach to removing the speeder’s wheels by merely smearing vaseline over the camera’s lens. After knowing this detail, you can’t help but watch that original footage and acknowledge that the scene merely looks like someone smeared vaseline over the lens.

This poor quality effect doesn’t ruin the movie, but the transparency of cockpits in Snowspeeders in The Empire Strikes Back also help remind audiences that the effects in the film are far from perfect, sometimes to a distracting degree.

SLIDE 7/7 – BATTLE OF YAVIN
Erasing the vaseline from Luke’s speeder was only the beginning of how the original film’s effects could get an upgrade, with the Battle of Yavin elevating to an all-new level thanks to advanced special effects techniques.
The sequence may have only featured a handful of new shots, but the overhaul of the film’s already impressive effects helped solidify these final scenes in the film as some of the most exciting moments in the entire saga, even maintaining their status as some of the best aerial battles ever put to film.

To cap off the sequence, the explosion of the Death Star was amplified, helping create a much larger sense of scale compared to the original, fiery explosion.”

Video: Actor Josh Robert Thompson pays tribute to George Lucas and the Prequel Trilogy

From Ministry of Cinema:

“Josh Robert Thompson is a voice actor, comedian, and impressionist. He’s also a huge Star Wars prequels fan. In this episode, we talk about what it’s like to satirize George Lucas, as well as Josh’s respect for the man and his prequel films.

A year ago, documentary film The Prequels Strike Back challenged viewers with new and interesting perspectives on George Lucas and his controversial prequel trilogy. Now, indie studio Ministry of Cinema is at it again with The Prequels Strike Back…Strikes Back! “

George Lucas wanted Darth Talon to corrupt Han and Leia’s son in Episode VII

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Lucasfilm Development Exec Pablo Hidalgo shared more information about George Lucas’ treatments for the third Star Wars trilogy.

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Darth Talon is a Twi’lek Sith Lady created for the Star Wars: Legacy comic series (check out her Wookieepedia entry).


Here are some concept arts from The Art of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

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New headlines falsely say that George Lucas denigrated The Phantom Menace (he was talking about a rough cut)

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In the documentary “The Beginning: Making Episode I”, we can hear George Lucas criticizing the fast pace of a rought cut of The Phantom Menace. Since years, Prequel bashers use this clip as evidence that even Lucas didn’t like his own movie. Which is absurd since virtually no filmmaker is satisfied with a rough cut. Later in the documentary, Lucas says that he’ll slow down the movie a little bit to make it better.

Today, The Hollywood Reporter and some other medias reused this old anti-Episode I propaganda. They didn’t have the honesty to specify in their headlines that Lucas wasn’t talking about the finished film.

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