“The film starts with corrupt corporations doing things behind people’s backs. The Jedi are trying to solve the mystery. A corporation is a shark without a conscience. All it cares about is eating. It’s not responsible. It’s the stockholders’ fault, or the CEO’s fault, or the board’s fault. It’s always somebody else’s fault, but of course the golden rule is ‘make money, no matter what,’ so that’s what everybody follows. They’re not doing it to be nice people. Our central characters-Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan, Padmé, and Anakin-are all trying to do the right thing, but they’re completely overwhelmed by forces that are way bigger than they are. The Jedi Council and the bureaucrats in the Senate are the inactive forces working against them; while unbeknownst to them the active one is Palpatine.”

— George Lucas, The Star Wars Archives (1999-2005) by Paul Duncan


“Steven [Spielberg] saw the rough cut,” Lucas says, sitting at home at a table in his kitchen. “I felt I needed to show it to Steven to figure out what the reality was, because we’d earlier had a rough-cut screening for ILM to test the film, and some of the people had strong opinions about things that were contrary to the way I was going. Some people were having a hard time with the reason that Anakin goes bad. Somebody asked whether somebody could kill Anakin’s best friend, so that he really gets angry. They wanted a real betrayal, such as, ‘You tried to kill me so now I’m going to try and kill you.’ They didn’t understand the fact that Anakin is simply greedy. There is no revenge. The revenge of the Sith is Palpatine. It doesn’t have much to do with Darth Vader; he’s a pawn in the whole scheme.

So I had to ask myself, What was I trying to say and didn’t I say it? Did it just get missed or is it not there? I had to look at it very hard. I had to ask myself, Is this how the audience is going to react? Fortunately, Steven confirmed that most of everything was working. So, I may lose a certain demographic—maybe, maybe not. But I had to make a decision, and I decided that I’m not going to alter the film to make it more commercial or marketable. I have to be true to my vision, which is thirty years old, but I have to be true to it.”

I respect this about Lucas: he made the films he wanted to make, with the story he wanted to tell. It was his vision that Anakin fell through greed, and he saw it through to the end. He made that decision knowing that it would be unsatisfying to a certain demographic, and that they might reject it. It makes RotS all the better for it, the prequels better for it.

He actually had something to say, and stuck to it, even if it wasn’t what would have been expected or sensational or what a studio like Disney would have pressured him to do. That certain demographic rejected the message both then and now, but their dissatisfaction and discomfort with the told story doesn’t make their alternate readings and headcanons accurate—it was always about Anakin’s greed.


George Lucas: “You have to work not to be angry”

“Obviously, there are people that just do the easy thing, and the easy thing is to be angry, which turns to hate. It’s not an active thing; it’s a passive thing. Being angry with somebody is a passive thing. You have to work not to be angry, and if you don’t work at it, you’ll just be angry for the rest of your life. Bitter, angry, and of course that leads to suffering – it’s the bad side.

– George Lucas, Star Wars Archives


“It was really about the Vietnam War, and that was the period where Nixon was trying to run for a [second] term, which got me to thinking historically about how do democracies get turned into dictatorships?” Lucas said at his Skywalker Ranch earlier this month. “Because the democracies aren’t overthrown; they’re given away.”

— George Lucas

There are a lot of movies that are badly made that I love, and there are a lot of movies that are just beautifully made but I don’t like them. And critics have a tendency that that is all they focus on, which is, “I like it or I don’t like it. It’s good. It’s bad.” And it doesn’t work that way, and so you really have to not deal with that part of what happens. It’s the same thing with the audience. You know, I’ve made some movies that have – ten people have gone to see them. Nobody wanted to go see the movie. And some film that the people went and saw and didn’t like it. Probably, you know, maybe a half a dozen of us actually liked the movies, but that’s fine. If I like it, then I’m happy with it. And you have to sort of accept that no matter what.

George Lucas (x)

“There can be no beauty if it is paid for by human injustice, nor truth that passes over injustice in silence, nor moral virtue that condones it.”

Art of Quotation

There can be no beauty if it is paid for by human injustice, nor truth that passes over injustice in silence, nor moral virtue that condones it.

Tadeusz Borowski, writer, Polish, holocaust survivor, book quote from “This way for the gas, ladies and gentlemen: and other stories”, 1967

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I shall never forget the occasion where I was visiting a school as a writer and the whole place suddenly fell into an uproar because the school tomboy – a most splendid Britomart of a girl – had beaten up the school bully. Everything stopped in the staffroom while the teachers debated what to do. They wanted to give the tomboy a prize, but decided reluctantly that they had better punish her and the bully too. They knew that if, as a child, you do pluck up courage to hit the bully, it is an act of true heroism – as great as that of Beowulf in his old age. I remember passing the tomboy, sitting in her special place of punishment opposite the bully. She was blazing with her deed, as if she had actually been touched by a god. And I thought that this confirmed all my theories: a child in her position is open to any heroic myth I care to use; she is inward with folktales; she would feel the force of any magical or divine intervention.

Diana Wynne Jones (via intomyth)