George Lucas To Retire?

April Fools! Er, wait, it’s January isn’t it? We can’t really see it happening any time soon but according to a piece in The New York Times, George Lucas is planning to retire, at least from mainstream cinema.

He said, “I’m moving away from the business, from the company, from all this kind of stuff,” What that means is he’s sick of the rigamarole he’s had to go through to make his pet project Red Tails, which was declined by every major studio and forced him to step up and make it with his own money. Now the film’s nearing completion he’s said that future projects will be “esoteric and screened mostly in art-houses.”

He goes on to say that he’s somewhat sick of the endless criticism he’s received over his tinkering with the Star Wars franchise.

“On the internet, all those same guys that are complaining I made changes are completely changing the movie,” he says. “Fine. But my movie, with my name on it, that says I did it, needs to be the way I want it. Why would I make any more [Star Wars movies] when everybody yells at you all the time and says what a terrible person you are?”

I think he’s missed the point somewhat. Most people’s problem with Star Wars is that the prequels were rubbish, not that Lucas deigned to make them in the first place. Sounds like he’s taking his ball and going home…

Meanwhile, the Star Wars franchise continues to rumble on in the shape of a TV series named Underworld by producer Rick McCallum last week – surely Lucas wouldn’t let someone else handle that completely without his interference?

Red Tails, directed by Anthony Hemingway is out in the States this Friday. We haven’t heard anything about a UK release just yet, but watch this space.