You’ll remember the Mouse House purchased Marvel Entertainment in 2009 to the tune of $4.24 billion. Lucasfilm recently collaborated with Disney to produce a line of Star Wars-themed CARS action figures. The acqusition doesn’t come as a huge surprise, though news of Episode 7 is certainly a shocker.
*Update 1: Variety’s Josh Dickey is unloading a series of tweets shedding light on this news. The Disney deal is apparently for Episode 7 and beyond, with a statement from Lucas indicating he’ll be passing the torch off to a new filmmaker:
*Update 2: George Lucas’ official statement:
For the past 35 years, one of my greatest pleasures has been to see Star Wars passed from one generation to the next. It’s now time for me to pass Star Wars on to a new generation of filmmakers. I’ve always believed that Star Wars could live beyond me, and I thought it was important to set up the transition during my lifetime. I’m confident that with Lucasfilm under the leadership of Kathleen Kennedy, and having a new home within the Disney organization, Star Wars will certainly live on and flourish for many generations to come. Disney’s reach and experience give Lucasfilm the opportunity to blaze new trails in film, television, interactive media, theme parks, live entertainment, and consumer products.
*Update 3: Via Yahoo Finance, Disney will now also retain Industrial, Light & Magic:
Under the deal, Disney will acquire ownership of Lucasfilm, a leader in entertainment, innovation and technology, including its massively popular and “evergreen” Star Wars franchise and its operating businesses in live action film production, consumer products, animation, visual effects, and audio post production. Disney will also acquire the substantial portfolio of cutting-edge entertainment technologies that have kept audiences enthralled for many years. Lucasfilm, headquartered in San Francisco, operates under the names Lucasfilm Ltd., LucasArts, Industrial Light & Magic, and Skywalker Sound, and the present intent is for Lucasfilm employees to remain in their current locations.
*Update 4: via CNN:
Executives from Disney and Lucasfilm plan to provide more details on the deal during a conference call Tuesday afternoon.
*Update 6: Executives are confirming the existence of a new trilogy with Episodes VII-IX beginning in 2015 with installments releasing in 2017 and 2019 thereafter. While a treatment for the trilogy exists it’s still in early stages. The studio hopes to release new Star Wars films every 2-3 years longterm.
*Update 7: Lucas will stay on as consultant, but everything in the conference call indicates the deal moved forward in the past year as Lucas decided to retire. The Indiana Jones franchise was not factored into the deal, though it appears to be coming with.
“We like Star Wars’ potential on TV as well. And we think DisneyXD is a great home for that.”
Update 9: Call just wrapped. Fox will retain distribution rights to previous Star Wars films with Disney getting sole rights to all future installments, though Iger mentions some co-branding between the studios.
That looks to about do it for now. Sound off below and let us know who you want to see direct 2015′s Star Wars: Episode VII… wow.
Source: via Slashfilm