Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Star Wars: The End of Everything

Disney bought LucasFilm.  Everybody freak out.  Ready? Go.

Ok, now that we've gotten that out of our collective system and hopefully everyone is feeling at least a little better about him- or herself, let's take a deep breath.  Because you know what I think?  I may be way out of bounds saying this, but I dare to suggest that everything just might be ok.  I mean, in fairness, could this be the event the Maya predicted all those years ago that will finally cause the end of everything as we know it?  Sure.  And the timing certainly seems right.  But I'm still going to go with "No."  Call me crazy.

As long as I'm being honest, I'm not a devoted Star Wars fan (is there a term for this fandom?).  The full scope of my knowledge of Star Wars comes from having seen the first installation (Episode IV, for those even less informed than I), and having been a proud resident of the Internet for a few years.  I know what a light saber is, and that Darth Vader is Luke's father, but don't ask me to explain what a Jedi is or how Jabba the Hutt factors into anything (I had to Google "Jabba the Hutt" to make sure I spelled it correctly).

So maybe I'm not much of a purist.  But the LucasFilm and Disney organizations have been buddies for years.  One of my favorite shows in Disney World's Hollywood Studios is the Indiana Jones stunt show.  So it's not as if Disney doesn't have the footing to step into this new territory.  In fact, I'll go ahead and assert that this isn't new territory at all.  Nevertheless, the news that Disney will put out a Star Wars: Episode VII has the fans in a panic whirlwind the size of Hurricane Sandy (sorry, too soon?).  Though what I don't understand is why they'd bother to start going in numerical order now.  Why Episode VII?  Why not Episode... I don't know, X?  Then come back and make VII - IX in a decade or so.

Disney has been a filmmaking giant for nearly a century and they know what they're doing.  And not to compare Star Wars to Toy Story, but a lot of people (myself included) were very concerned when the trailer for Toy Story 3 started popping up everywhere that it was too late for a sequel and that its very existence would somehow taint the brilliance of the first two.  But that Toy Story 3 was tasteful, emotional, and consistent with the established characters.   I know, I totally just compared Star Wars to Toy Story.  Let's move on.  (Edit: When I wrote this, I'd completely forgotten about the homage Toy Story 2 pays to Star Wars by means of the Zurg/Buzz subplot.  Obviously, the writers thought of this comparison long before I did.)

I'd also like to point to the Pirates of the Caribbean series, which are four (yes, four--I liked On Stranger Tides) of my favorite movies.  And they're not only Disney movies, but I learned today that they are actually based on the Disney World ride of the same name.  Thanks, Wikipedia.

So while I certainly understand resisting changes to things we're passionate about (looking at you, David Tennant), I've got a more objective point of view of Star Wars (because that's what this "LucasFilm" drama boils down to, in the end) by simple virtue of the fact that I'm not a crazy fan.  And personally, I'm intrigued by the notion of a movie that combines the rich Star Wars mythology with all the movie-making technology at our disposal today.

The best comment I've heard about this particular news item came from the kid that sat behind me in Psychology class this morning:

"Does that make Leia a Disney Princess?"
Hastily photoshopped this with pictures I stole off the internet.  Enjoy.


  1. I totally agree! I think the next Star Wars movie could be great! And that's coming from a very dedicated fan! And I love the photoshopped picture, haha :)

  2. Disney did not totally butcher The Avengers like some predicted so I have faith in them for the next installment of Star Wars. It certainly can't be worse than Episodes I-III.

  3. Loved this read. Your phrasing is totally on and you always stick the landing. Star Wars lost me when they came out with those little fuzz-ball midgets that ran around in the forest and a green muppet. But I thought the first and second one were electric.


  5. @Jess... valuable insight from someone with more of an investment. And thanks! I worked really hard on it (not really).

    @Burns... Yeah, all of a sudden everyone's idea of Disney became reduced to Mickey Mouse and Cinderella. I have faith, too, though I can't speak for Episodes I-III because, as I stated, I have not seen them.

    @Tom... Thank you! Your comment made me giggle and reminded me of this:

    @Sans... You're so welcome.

  6. I completely agree with your view. People just get so worked up sometimes. Also, I'm glad I found someone else who actually like the fourth Pirates of the Carribean movie. Honestly, I loved them all.