by Michelle McGlynn
The night before Halloween, when no doubt there were people everywhere perfecting their Luke Skywalker and Yoda costumes, some news broke that set Star Wars fans the world over aflutter. George Lucas had sold Lucasfilm to Disney for a tidy little sum of approximately $4 billion. Not only this but Disney have already made plans to make another three installments of the Star Wars franchise. The first, Star Wars Episode VII, is set to be released in 2015.
It has been seven years since the last Star Wars film, Revenge of the Sith. It was the conclusion to the prequel trilogy which began in 1999. This latest trilogy was almost universally panned by critics and fans. In the seven years since its conclusion, there has not really been much of a lull in this hatred. So, is it a wise choice for Disney to revisit the Star Wars franchise? With an incredibly loyal fan base, it will be an extremely difficult task to please the audience.
Within minutes of the story breaking, the internet was flooded with people mourning the news they perceived to be dreadful. Initially it appeared that there was no one who was excited about this news. But as time past, it seemed that this may just have been a snap reaction for some. Perhaps as they began to think about it, they thought that, for now at least, they would give Disney the benefit of the doubt. Now, a couple of days on from the announcement, there is a debate raging among fans of the series. Many people are steadfast in their opposition to the news. There are some who have chosen a more optimistic route, many of whom are quick to point out Disney’s success in relation to Marvel films. Celebrities from the previous Star Wars films as well as some who are simply big fans joined in by tweeting their own reactions to the news.
Mark Hamill was vague, tweeting:
“Congratulations to George for today’s mega-deal! Can’t comment on Ep 7 before I have all the facts which are short supply right now- Patience”
Peter Mayhew, who co-starred with Hamill as Chewbacca, was much more enthusiastic:
“I’ve always liked that Mouse, and I’m looking forward to all the exciting possibilities this brings to the Star Wars Universe”
Mayhew later added:
“About eleventy million of you have asked me about Chewie and episode VII. The answer is I don’t know. But feel free to start a movement….”
Long-time fan Kevin Smith had a very positive reaction to share with fans:
“A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, I was told there’d be nine STAR WARS movies. 35 years later, the final 3 are finally happening!”
Smith added on his Facebook page that he was “all for it” and that he would be “first in line to pay for whatever they do”.
For his part, George Lucas has expressed his “complete confidence” in Disney when it comes to his creation. Lucas said in a statement “It’s now time for me to pass ‘Star Wars’ on to a new generation of filmmakers”. We have no doubt that this debate will rage on until the 2015 release and beyond. Now that the celebrities have had their say, Film Jam wants to know, how do you feel? Are you outraged, undecided or cautiously optimistic? Do you think your curiosity will force you to go to see it or are you planning to refrain in order to protect your image of the Star Wars you grew up with? Let it all out, we’re here for you!