George Lucas Returns!
Why is it such good news that George Lucas is returning to Star Wars? Why would it matter to the kind of person who watches all the movies and wears Star Wars t shirts? The reason is that George Lucas is the original force (or Force, if you will) behind the whole Star Wars franchise. He was the mastermind behind the original series, and his return triggers the hope for a return to form. With George Lucas back at the wheel, it is hoped that the original series, which lost its way a long time ago, will be back on top and ready to really inspire people and show true creativity in a way that the Disney-funded franchise did not.
Let’s rewind. George Lucas was the man behind the myth as far as Star Wars is concerned. The original creative genius behind the series was a man with very original ideas who was able to craft something the world had never seen. The Joycean, or perhaps Campbellian, genius behind the original Star Wars is something that could never be replicated by a committee or a focus group. It’s the kind of true creativity that nobody could replicate besides the original Jedi master himself.
Then Lucas created the prequels, which weren’t as good. Now that nobody could tell George Lucas “no”, he was able to make all the self-indulgent creative mistakes he was prevented from making during the first trilogy. Because he was famous and well-known now, nobody dared to tell him “no”. Perhaps he surrounded himself with suck-ups, or perhaps it was mere happenstance, but George Lucas was now able to do whatever he wanted, and it ended up with an absolute mess of a prequel trilogy. This finally ended when he sold the franchise to Disney. This, it was thought, might repair the series.
But that ended poorly, too. Once Disney got ahold of the series, it became democratized, corporatized, commodified, fed through focus groups and committees, a creature of bureaucracy. It was now a product, and not a product in the sense of a creation by an individual. Star Wars became something mass-produced, and that killed its appeal. It was one more politically correct franchise aiming to appeal to the lowest common denominator in a country with no unity and no common culture. It was a product for the masses, with no identity and no sense of exclusion or boundaries. It was simply a creative travesty.
With George Lucas back at the helm, we dare to hope for something better. We dare to hope that his self-indulgent tendencies have been fully attenuated, and that he will serve as a guide to take Star Wars back to creative validity. We want to see something new and exciting, not self-indulgent like the prequels and not a corporate mass-production like the latest films, but the true product of a creative mind. We want to see if George Lucas still has it in him. Let’s hope for the best. May the Force be with him.