George Lucas's cash cow
- URL: Unknown
- Location: Fiction
- Date: 05/1977
Star Wars is a mediocre American sci-fi/fantasy franchise that has has inexplicably amassed a devoted fanbase. It started with a trilogy in the late 1970s and early 1980's that had groundbreaking special effects for its time. That was about the only redeemable thing as, unlike wine, it has not aged well. Many movies after Star Wars took its key traits and improved on them drastically (or somewhat) as George Lucas neither cared or knew how to improve them himself.
The acting in Star Wars wasn't very good, nor was the plot, and the costumes were goofy. This can be chalked up thanks to Lucas, though he demonstrated his competence as a director with American Graffiti. Despite this, the movies pretty much forged the careers of Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford, but also made them seem like poor actors. Lucky for Ford, he proved his acting abilities in other rolls, such as Blade Runner, and Ford's role as Indiana Jones make him a movie icon, eclipsing his character in the Star Wars movies. Hamill was a voice actor in Batman: The Animated Series in the mid-1990's, but you can hardly consider that a comeback. Carrie Fisher had a few other smaller rolls (more than Hamill, at least), struggled with drug addiction and mental health problems, and still lives off Star Wars money to this day.
The music is decent, though Lucas had no involvement with the music. In fact, the movies would have been much less tolerable without the music. Try to imagine them without the soundtracks. It's really one of the most memorable parts of Star Wars.
The new movies
Lucas couldn't pass up even more piles of money (who could blame him?), so a new trilogy of prequels were released in the late 1990's and early 2000's that were embarrassingly bad. Considering the public was now familiar with CGI, the films' various shortcomings could not be covered up by special effects. It was shoddily written, terribly acted, and the effects were no longer dazzling.
Of course, nobody who saw the new movies could forget Lucas's failed attempt at Vaudeville: Jar-Jar Binks, the mincing, vaguely Jamaican, "Uncle Tom" character that is annoying even by Star Wars standards, e.g., C-3P0. Not even diehard fans could ignore this embarrassment. Now, one could understand Jar-Jar Binks serving as comic relief, but the character didn't say or do one remotely humorous thing in any movie. The character is so despised, it has long been cliché to mention him(?) when discussing the failings of the new movies and the franchise in general.
Despite all the problems, fans are obsessed with every minutiae of the Star Wars universe, which is probably an effort to escape the sadness of their own realities (see also: Cyberpunk, Steampunk). Some live vicariously through the stories and characters in order to temporarily forget about their meaningless lives.
Movie franchises that are better than Star Wars
- Indiana Jones
- Back to the Future
- Romero's Dead movies
- The Godfather
- James Bond
- And many others...
As to how Star Wars was created, it's hard to say since Lucas keeps changing his story. The most widely held belief is that Lucas came up with Star Wars during his first movie, THX 1138. Lucas originally wanted to film a remake of Flash Gordon, tentatively named "The Star Wars," but he was unable to obtain the rights.
During American Graffiti, Lucas began writing up names for the movie before compiling a synopsis at the end. The synopsis was so disastrous that Lucas considered buying the rights to Kurosawa's The Hidden Fortress and putting it in space instead of writing something new. He wrote the script to The Hidden Fortress In Space, scraped it, wrote it again to diverge from the Kurosawa movie, scraped it again, and then wrote it again as a final version. Though the final version would also be rewritten during shooting. It was released in May 25, 1977 to popular and some critical praise, leading to its sequels.
Still around. The fanbase has a strong internet presence. There are numerous fan site and wikis dedicated to the imaginary and, thus, unimportant, Star Wars universe. It is rumored that another Star Wars trilogy will be made, but Lucas is presently only looking to re-release all the Star Wars films in 3-D. This will no doubt bring in billions of dollars despite everyone knowing that the prequels sucked horribly.
- A sadly dedicated fanbase, most similar to beaten housewives.
- George Lucas's estimated net worth is over $3 billion (Forbes).
- Lucas's production company, Lucasfilm Ltd., includes Industrial Light & Magic.
- The guy who wrote Agony in Pink wrote an erotic fanfic about Princess Leia being brutally tortured
- Was the highest grossing movie until ET, and the entire franchise is still the third highest earning franchise
- George Lucas also created Pixar