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Star Wars Goes Disney

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Julie Derhak and Eric Christiansen

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Disney is known for its theme parks, princesses and various films. Their movies have included many different companies purchased over the last few years. In 2006,Disney bought Pixar from Steve Jobs for $7.4 billion, in 2009 they purchased Marvel for $4 billion, and on October 30, 2012, Disney bought Lucasfilm for $4.05 billion.

In an article in USA Today, Disney’s CEO Robert Iger said, “This is one of the greatest entertainment properties of all time, one of the best-branded and one of the most valuable, and it’s just fantastic for us to have the opportunity to both buy it, run it, and grow it.”  Besides the StarWars movie franchise, the deal also included special-effects house Industrial Light & Magic, Skywalker Sound, and the videogame company LucasArts.

With $4 billion earned in a single day, Lucas has big plans for his profits by donating them towards education.

“I am dedicating the majority of my wealth to improving education. It is the key to the survival of the human race,” said Lucas in a statement from CNN. “As humans, our greatest tool for survival is our ability to think and to adapt—as educators, storytellers, and communicators our responsibility is to continue to do so.”

Lucas’ decision to sell his company was a surprise to many fans around the world. Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker) revealed in an interview that he, Lucas, and Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia) got together over the summer and discussed the future dealings for Star Wars.

“I thought he was going to talk about either his retirement or the Star Wars TV series that I’ve heard about… so when he said, ‘We decided we’re going to do Episodes VIIVIII, and IX,’ I was just gobsmacked,” Hamill told Entertainment Weekly.

Disney expects to expand Star Wars’ film schedule and plans to release Episode VII in 2015. They will then begin to issue the consecutive movies every two to three years.

There are many speculations about the content of Episode VII.  What we can expect fromDisney is that they will leave audiences satisfied and wanting more.  Here are some ideas that have been passed around the Star Wars universe for possible movies.

            Episode VII: Return of Boba Fett would be an epic movie, so why not? With the announcement of three more Star Wars movies, rumors have been running rampant throughout theStar Wars Universe. Fans and potential directors alike have been debating where the saga will go. Actors Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, and Harrison Ford (Han Solo) have all stated their interests in appearing in the upcoming films, which has fueled the possibilities of potential plots. It’s easy to see a Leia and Han love story, along with Luke working to revive the Jedi Order. Other fans would want to see several of the EU (Expanded Universe) novels, such as Timothy Zahn’s Thrawn Trilogy, to be put onto the big screen, but reports have claimed that the next three movies will be original stories.

Disney will have to appeal to a whole new generation of Star Wars fans, but they still have to be faithful to the original followers.  Star Wars fans are already disgruntled about the prequel movies, (Episodes I, II, and III) and want someone else other than George Lucas to direct the films. Popular candidates include: Steven Spielberg (E.T, Indiana Jones), Joss Whedon (The Avengers), and Gore Verbinski (Pirates of the Caribbean).

“I think Gore Verbinski would be a good director for the new Star Wars movies. He has experience with directing, and I think he made good decisions with Pirates of the Caribbean,” Says Anika Brock, Junior at Bingham.

Another essential question concerning the films is the soundtrack. Star Wars isn’t StarWars without the unforgettable, iconic music. John Williams is the mastermind behind every StarWars song. Most fans want Williams to score the future films, but at the age of eighty, there is concern that other candidates should be considered. Hans Zimmer (Gladiator, Inception) and James Horner (Titanic, Avatar) are several fan favorites.

However, only time will tell where Episodes VII, VIII, and IX will go. By 2015 there will be lines out the theaters to see the highly anticipated film. Keeping true to the original simplicity ofStar Wars is key to making it successful. Who knows, the films could take place five, ten, or even more than fifty years after Episode VI: Return of the Jedi. That would make Chewbacca one old Wookie.

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Star Wars Goes Disney