Comments made by George Lucas, in which he described how the success of the Star Wars movies has been ‘abused’ have resurfaced, and they’ve got fans talking. Lucas’s explanation, which he gave in an interview with journalist Charlie Rose back in 2015, goes into detail about how his science fiction movies helped to damage creativity in filmmaking.
Specifically, Lucas reflected on the way in which Hollywood has become increasingly risk-averse, with a focus on sequels and reboots, rather than new properties and new IPs. He said “The other thing [about the success of Star Wars] that got abused, naturally in a capitalist society, the studios said ‘wow we can make a lot of money, this is a licence to kill’ and they did it.” He went on to say “Now, if you do anything that’s not a sequel they won’t do it. That’s the downside of Star Wars, and it really shows an enormous lack of imagination, and a fear of creativity.”
Lucas also took the time to explain the reasons why his epic space adventure movies were so successful, sharing his belief that the series flourished because of its creativity and bold decisions. The director said “You’ve got to remember Star Wars came from nowhere. There was nothing like it.”
Lucas certainly makes a good point about the dominance of sequels, spin-offs, and established franchises over original releases. In fact, since he originally made the comments back in 2015, that dominance has only become more prominent. So far, the top ten in the worldwide box-office results for 2022 are all either sequels, reboots, adaptations of popular video games, or superhero movies.
However, box-office numbers aren’t the only metric for success, and even the Star Wars franchise itself has struggled in recent years, with many putting that down to a lack of creativity and an unwillingness to be bold. What’s more, some keen-eyed audiences might take issue with Lucas’s idea that Star Wars was completely original and came from nowhere (ahem, Dune, anyone?).
If you’re desperate for some of that George Lucas creativity, take a look at our guide to the best Star Wars characters. Or, if you’re planning a big Star Wars marathon, here’s all the ways to watch Star Wars in order.