Disney buying Star Wars is a good thing

By Nicolaas Verbeek

Dear Editor,

I thought your piece (Nov. 29, 2012, “Observer Opinion” on Disney’s purchase of Lucasfilm, which owns the Star Wars franchise) was too speculative and thus too unnecessarily scathing. You mentioned how Disney would somehow stifle artistic integrity without citing the fact that it received an extensive treatment from Lucas himself for the story to span three films. Then you said that not basing them on existing stories from the Extended Universe is bad because it doesn’t satisfy fans. That’s contradictory; George Lucas didn’t write those books either, so how would basing the films off of those books not be an infringement on Lucas’s artistic integrity?

Regarding Disney creating unnecessary sequels to milk franchises for money, I’m in agreement. However, I am hoping that because the number of sequels is set already at trilogy, whoever ends up writing or directing will have a well-thought-out story arc developed to span a trilogy, no more and no less.

The last bit about directors was rather ungrounded. Citing Steven Spielberg’s refusal to direct the franchise as foreshadowing is ignoring the entire history behind the two directors. Lucas and Spielberg had a friendly rivalry throughout their moviemaking careers. Spielberg turned down the movie because Lucas is a friend of his and it’s Lucas’s franchise. J.J. Abrams is in a similar boat; h

e has stated that he turned it down because of the high regard he holds for Star Wars. He didn’t feel that way about Star Trek which is why he could pull it off—no fear of ruining a sacred cow.

As for Peter Jackson, he’ll be occupied with his own Hobbit trilogy for the next few years.
As the pragmatist I am, I’ll remain skeptical about where the franchise will end up. Disney did a wonderful job with The Avengers, and it is worth noting that its director Joss Whedon, as well as Jon Favreau (Iron Man) and David Fincher (Fight Club) are still in the running for director.

The films are not out yet; do not pass judgment until you have sat through each one.

-Nicolaas Verbeek, senior