Tag Archives: George Lucas

Star Wars: The Force Awakens – Passing the Saber

Tonight’s the night. After years of waiting, after the stress of getting tickets for opening weekend when the geekoshpere went on a bender, it is finally here.

For me it is so much more than a chance to see a return to the biggest movie franchise in the galaxy, it is about family, it is about tradition.

Continue reading Star Wars: The Force Awakens – Passing the Saber

Fun with Star Wars The Force Awakens Trailer Edits

Along with the previously released teaser trailers for Star Wars The Force Awakens, fans were finally given the full trailer during halftime of ESPN’s Monday Night Football on October 19. Additionally, the teasers and the full trailer have given fans footage enough to edit into new versions of trailers that are sure to entertain fans until the movie finally arrives in December and we’re here to bring some of them to you.

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Cha-Cha-Changes: Fan Compiles Changes to Original Star Wars Trilogy

As Shmi Skywalker once said, you can’t stop the change, and this has never been more true than when it comes to all the changes made to the masterpiece that is Star Wars. For years fans have stood helplessly by and watched their beloved film changed by the creator himself, and the balance of the force has been in turmoil ever since. Continue reading Cha-Cha-Changes: Fan Compiles Changes to Original Star Wars Trilogy

Steven Soderbergh Recut Raiders Of The Lost Ark As A Silent Movie

To show the importance of staging in filmmaking, director Steven Soderbergh reworks Steven Spielberg’s classic adventure Raiders of the Lost Ark into a moodily, affective black and white silent film. The film is essentially stripped of many surface elements to highlight the deeper ones (at least for Soderbergh). No more color or witty banter from Harrison Ford, and we lose John Williams iconic score. Soderbergh replaces all of the soundtrack with Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross’ score from The Social Network, not to draw comparisons between the two films but rather to provide audible accents to the staging.

Continue reading Steven Soderbergh Recut Raiders Of The Lost Ark As A Silent Movie

The Star Wars: Dark Horse brings George Lucas’ Original Script To Life

Since Star Wars: Episode VII was announced a few months ago, their has been a number of new Star Wars projects announced, such as the Star Wars: Rebels animated TV series. None of these have been quite as left field as the announcement back in April that Dark Horse will be releasing an 8-issue comic series titled The Star Wars‘, based on George Lucas’ original draft scripts written back in 1974.

The original screenplay had many differences from the final draft that eventually became Star Wars. ‘The Star Warstells the story of Jedi General Luke Skywalker, who seems to be the only person concerned that The Empire is poised for an attack on the peaceful world of Aquilae. When King Kayos is killed, Jedi in training Annikin Starkiller is ordered to find Princess Leia, while Skywalker sends his only squadron against the Empire’s powerful new battle station! O,h and Han Solo is a massive green alien who artist Mike Mayhew described to the USA Today as a “worldly” and exotic gunslinger who is already a rebel agent and “a very mysterious pirate that lurks in the shadows”. Also, gone are the legendary Lightsabers, instead the Jedi wield lazer-swords which are not too different to the swords that we are used to.

Artwork to 'The Star Wars #1' Doug Wheatley Ultravariant cover
Artwork to ‘The Star Wars #1’ Doug Wheatley Ultravariant cover

You may be forgiven for thinking that Dark Horse is cashing in on the renewed interest in the series, however this project really excites me. Marvel and DC have been producing parallel world storylines for years with their ‘What if…?and ‘Elseworldscomics respectively, and for the most part they give us a great alternative vision of classic characters. I don’t see this as being any different. At the very least it will give Star Wars fans an insight into what George Lucas originally intended. Dark Horse also doesn’t tend to churn out any old stuff just for the sake of cashing in. For the most part their continuation of the Buffy, Firefly, and Angel series’ have been nothing less than superb.

The comics creators are also of high pedigree. The 8 issue series will be written by J. W. Rinzler, executive editor at Lucas books with Lucas’ full blessing on the project.

Writer J.W.Rinzler says on the Dark Horse website:

[box_dark]“While researching in the Lucasfilm Archives I’ve found many treasures—but one which truly astounded me was George’s rough draft for The Star Wars. His first complete imaginings were hallucinating to read—mind blowing,” “While working with George on another book project, I once asked if we could adapt his rough draft. He was hesitant. Years later, with Dark Horse’s invaluable help, we showed him a few drawn and colored pages of what it might look like. He gave us the okay.”[/box_dark]

Artwork will be provided by Mike Mayhew, who has drawn for plenty of well known properties such as Green Arrow, Bionic Man, The Avengers and X-Men.

The first issue will be published on the 4th of September. Dark Horse will have a number of variant covers including one by legendary concept artist Ralph McQuarrie.

Artwork to 'The Star Wars #2' Ralph McQuarrie variant cover
Artwork to ‘The Star Wars #2’ Ralph McQuarrie variant cover

Disney Buys LucasFilm, “Star Wars: Episode 7” due in 2015 (UPDATED)

Disney is in talks to pay $4.05 BILLION in cash and stocks for Lucasfilm. Earlier today, George Lucas, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Lucasfilm, issued a statement:

[quote]“For the past 35 years, one of my greatest pleasures has been to see Star Wars passed from one generation to the next…It’s now time for me to pass Star Wars on to a new generation of filmmakers. I’ve always believed that Star Wars could live beyond me, and I thought it was important to set up the transition during my lifetime. I’m confident that with Lucasfilm under the leadership of Kathleen Kennedy, and having a new home within the Disney organization, Star Wars will certainly live on and flourish for many generations to come. Disney’s reach and experience give Lucasfilm the opportunity to blaze new trails in film, television, interactive media, theme parks, live entertainment, and consumer products.”[/quote]

Apparently it’s about to get terrifyingly real. Not only has Disney allegedly has purchased LucasFilm, they’ve announced Star Wars: Episode VII will be released in 2015. After the last several additions, it’s only a matter of time before Star Wars purists relive the terror that was Episodes I – III.

This acquisition brings Lucasfilm under the same banner as Pixar, Marvel, ESPN and ABC.

[box_dark]UPDATE: Disney’s Robert Iger revealed that not only is Star Wars Episode VII is to be followed by Star Wars Episodes VIII and IX, and that the studio plans on releasing a new Star Wars movie “every two to three years.[/box_dark]

What do you think, Bombers? Is this potentially a good thing for the Star Wars film series, or another nail in the coffin? Sound off below!

Know Your Sith! Week One: Darth Kruhl

I’m proud to bring everyone a new weekly post that I prefer to call “Know Your Sith”.  And yes that is a play on the words ‘know your shit’. Just like Sith Happens and Sith-head. Basically we will feature a new Sith Lord every week and a brief bio including their claim to fame and some pivotal moments for them in the Star Wars universe. And just so everyone knows, we won’t be covering well known Sith Lords such as Darth Vader, Darth Sidious and Darth Tyranus. This is a chance for the Star Wars fans out there to have a little back story on Sith Lords from some of the expanded universe work out there including comics, games and novels.

At one point George Lucas issued an edict to the expanded universe writers and figure heads: No Sith and No Galaxy Spanning Wars. Also I think he said no more Wookie Jedi, which is a damn shame. But once the New Jedi Order series started the whole galaxy spanning war thing sort of went out the window. With the completion of the NJO series the no Sith rule also went out the window and now we have Old Republic Sith, post NJO Sith and Legacy era Sith. To the layman, those are several of the different time eras in the Star Wars expanded universe.

And now for this week’s Sith Lord:


“A Sith has many ways to kill.”

Race: Human (Home Planet Unknown)

Claim to fame: Almost took out the Emperor Roan Fel

Moment of Shame: Dying by blaster bolt. I mean seriously, you’re a Sith.

Sith Affiliation: The Order of the One Sith

Darth Kruhl definitely didn’t have much face time, but definitely made an impact and proved that he was pretty bad ass. Showing up in the widely loved Legacy comic line written John Ostrander, Darth Kruhl was one of the One Sith Order’s best assassins and intelligence operatives. We were able to watch him single handedly manipulate and ultimately bind the planet of Munto Codru to the will of his Sith Emperor, Darth Krayt, but it is Kruhl’s assignment following that which makes him stand out.

Darth Kruhl is charged with assassinating the exiled Emperor Roan Fel who at this point is the second most powerful being in the galaxy behind Darth Krayt. (Politically, not in terms of force use, though Fel was definitely no push over) After infiltrating the heavily fortified Imperial capital of Bastion Kruhl finds Fel meditating in his garden when he springs to attack. Unfortunately Fel was waiting for such an assassin. Kruhl fights valiantly, nearly killing the Emperor at one point, even without a lightsaber. But Fel finally gains the upper hand finishing Kruhl off with a blaster bolt to the guts.

The fight itself was one of the best in the Legacy comics, like a fight between two lone samurai in a bamboo thicket. Many of the fights in Legacy involve groups of force users and tons of limbs and heads flying to and fro, but this one felt more personal and the stakes were quite high. Kruhl more than likely would have never left the planet alive after killing Roan Fel but would have been regarded very highly by his Sith bretheren for sacrificing himself to eliminate Darth Krayt’s competition to the throne. Even failing in his mission I have to say… that Sith had balls.

Stay tuned next week for another installment of Know Your Sith!

Jar Jar Binks and the Deleted Scene

So, I cannot stand Jar Jar Binks. It’s honestly just something you really can’t even get used to by being exposed to it over and over again on the screen. It’s like someone forcing you to watch 2 Girls, 1 Cup repeatedly; you will never be able to watch it without feeling uncomfortable, embarrassed or just completely nauseated.

Continue reading Jar Jar Binks and the Deleted Scene

George Lucas Claims That Han Solo Never Shot First! COME ON!

‘Whether or not Han Solo shot first’ is one of the biggest debates ever. It’s somewhere akin to the health care issue in the United States or whether global warming exists or not. You have Star Wars geeks of all creeds and color going at it back and forth about whether or not Han was a hero by not shooting first, or if he was a cold blooded killer for being shooter numero uno.

Personally, I always felt that Han definitely shot first when I was a youngling, and justifiably so. I think it qualifies as self defense when some scumbag Rodian has a gun pointed right at you and is gloating about taking away your starship and/or turning you over to a disgusting, oversized slug gangster. To tell you the truth I never actually thought twice about the whole situation.

Then came the special edition releases of the Star Wars trilogy and the modified scene where Han looks like he had a slight seizure to dodge a blaster bolt that harmlessly hits against the wall. I remember being in middle school and thinking not much of it, but after watching the movie about 80 more times it sort of started to bug me about why they did that, and why it looked so terrible. It was something that many fans including myself had hoped would disappear once all six Star Wars movies were released on Blu-Ray, but it was to no avail. George Lucas, creator of the Star Wars franchise claimed time and again that he added the scene because he didn’t want Han to look like some cold blooded killer. But if that was the case then why have the scene be so shoddy in the first place? Why not just fix this shit in the 70’s so we don’t have to waste our geek time debating it now?

Since then, there has been a recent development. This one is coming straight from the source. The Maker and flannel bearer himself George Lucas has recently had this say to the whole Han-Greedo debacle (IGN):

[quote]In a chat with The Hollywood Reporter (via /Film), Lucas said, “The controversy over who shot first, Greedo or Han Solo, in Episode IV, what I did was try to clean up the confusion, but obviously it upset people because they wanted Solo [who seemed to be the one who shot first in the original] to be a cold-blooded killer, but he actually isn’t. It had been done in all close-ups and it was confusing about who did what to whom. I put a little wider shot in there that made it clear that Greedo is the one who shot first, but everyone wanted to think that Han shot first, because they wanted to think that he actually just gunned him down.” [/quote]

Oh yes George. We, the violent masses want nothing more than for our beloved Han Solo to be a murdering psychopath who just guns down every Rodian he sees. Really? I don’t think that anyone was upset due to the fact that Lucas’ terrible wide shot proved that Greedo shot first, I think they’re mad because you did such a crap job about it in the special editions. Lucas should have either left the whole thing up to interpretation or done a better job way back when. And yeah, I guess Han should be looking at keeping his image clean without any bar room murder, despite the fact that he’s already a f–kin’ smuggler and self-proclaimed scoundrel. (He did like the sound of that.) Either way I guess it doesn’t matter because Lucas will leave things that way that he wants. So that means all of the Star Wars geeks will remain looking like idiots as they argue over which guy shot first. Seriously say those last four words again, it doesn’t sound good at all.

Grizzly Review: Red Tails

There’s nothing like two hours of hokey, old-fashioned, and exciting entertainment. Ridden with clichés and one-dimensional characters, big budget blockbusters are the foundation of American entertainment. I mean, what would we do if pretentious art films were the only things hitting the megaplex? You know what we would do? We would poke our freaking eyes out, and beg people like Spielberg and Lucas and Jackson to just get back behind the director’s chair, and give us the goods. But not Michael Bay. No, Michael Bay is on a permanent time out after the Transformers sequels.

George Lucas announced his retirement from big budget filmmaking, saying that he’ll be going out with Red Tails, a fictionalized telling of the Tuskegee airmen, the first all African-American pilot group. Serving as Executive Producer for the project, it was a story that Lucas was very eager to tell. He felt that the Tuskegee pilots were extremely underappreciated and wanted to bring their story to life in the most entertaining way possible. Now, in 2012, he’s achieved that goal, finally releasing Red Tails after twenty-odd years in production.

Red Tails’ main pilots are ladies’ man, Lightning (David Oyelowo), the “best pilot in the whole damn world”, Joker (Elijah Kelley), Junior (Tristan Wilds), and their leader, Easy (Nate Parker). Together, they make up the most talented and fiercest pilots in the military, but because they’re colored, they’re forced to do minuscule surveillance jobs where no enemies have been spotted for months, as they aren’t trusted to handle real combat due to the belief that they have “inferior mental capacity” to the other pilots.

The group’s leaders, Major Emanuelle Stance (Cuba Gooding Jr.), and Colonel AJ Bullard (Terrence Howard), land them a mission that involves escorting bombers across enemy territory. They nail it with no US casualties which catapults their status into the top air league in the entire military.

TV director Anthony Hemingway makes his feature film debut with Red Tails, and the directing is definitely the first thing I want to talk about, because it’s f***ing awesome. Granted, this is one of the most heavily produced movies you’ll ever see, but it’s damn cool to look at, and the CGI is quite realistic. The dogfight scenes are breathtaking, and Hemingway makes use of steady cam, immersing us in the action instead of flip-flopping the camera every which way so that we see nothing.

The screenplay is the definition of cheesy, but I really didn’t care because the corny one-liners and unrealistic dialogue is just a part of what makes Red Tails the old-fashioned action fest that it is. In fact, the film borders on Chaos Cinema, with the extended dogfight scenes and thin plot, but it’s Chaos Cinema done right. Unlike 2011’s Transformers: Dark of the MoonRed Tails know how to balance action and plot well enough to the point where the resulting product actually comes off as a movie and not a commercial for explosives.

I had an amazing time watching Red Tails. It’s a fun, family friendly movie that can appeal to all ages, races, genders, and anything else you can think of. It’s an inspiring tale that isn’t meant to be taken too seriously and being a George Lucas skeptic, I was surprisingly impressed by this movie’s capacity to entertain and inspire all at the same time, while still not losing its edge. The surprisingly bad reviews can be called “racism”, but I call it opinion, and by definition, Red Tails isn’t necessarily a “good movie”, but it’s an extremely fun one to watch, and isn’t that all we really need sometimes?

4/5 Bears