The sale of Lucasfilm is no Mickey Mouse deal! Founder George Lucas handed over the reins of the company he started back in 1971 for a cool $4.05 billion to Disney. Included in the deal, the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchises, plus prized high-tech production companies, Industrial Light & Magic and Skywalker Sound.
Although the director was approached over a year and a half ago to sell his empire, he says now it’s finally time to take a step back. “I realized at some point I needed to retire. And I wanted to go on and do other things — things in philanthropy and doing more experimental kind of films. But I couldn’t really drag my company into that.” But, don’t expect George to be completely out of the picture. He’s set to consult on the upcoming Star Wars sequels that are already in the works. ”We’ve got a plan for 7, 8 and 9, which is the end of the trilogy,” he explains. Also in development, “new characters and books and all kinds of things. We could go on making ‘Star Wars’ for the next 100 years.” And if Disney has its way, the franchise will continue for another century. To date, Star Wars has grossed $4.4 billion and continues to profit from merchandising. Disney is planning to put out a new film every two to three years.
All your favourite characters will be heading back to the big screen in 2015 for the upcoming trilogy, with the story of Luke Skywalker, Han Solo and Princess Leia continuing after their last adventure in Return of the Jedi. Disney CEO, Bob Iger, says that’s not all, “consumer products, television projects, games and theme park attractions” are also in the works, as well expansions on the current parks in Anaheim, California, Orlando, Florida, Paris and Tokyo.
Watch more from George Lucas in the video below!