Disney will acquire Lucasfilm for $4.05 billion, promising to bring Star Wars Episode 7 in 2015 (“with more feature films expected”) as it takes control of the science fiction franchise.
Disney paid $4 billion for Marvel Comics in 2009. Lucasfilm co-chair Kathleen Kennedy will be the new president of Lucasfilm, working with Walt Disney Studios chairman Alan Horn.
UPDATE: Lucas released a video interview revealing more about the future of the venture. The video has earned more than 489,000 page views since the announcement. While it has nearly 4,000 likes, it also has more than 1,200 dislikes on YouTube.
We’ve embedded the complete interview above, but here’s an excerpt: “I always said I was going to do anymore. That’s true. I’m not going to do anymore. But that doesn’t mean I’m unwilling to turn it over to Kathy to do more. I have story treatments of 7, 8 and 9 and a bunch of other movies. Obviously, we have hundreds of books and comics and everything you can imagine. I sort of moved that treasure trove of stories and various things to Kathy and I have complete confidence that she’s going to take them and make great movies.”
Kennedy added: “We are absolutely going to make Star Wars movies. We are in the midst of the really fun part of the process, which is, we are sitting down with a couple of writers and we’re starting to discuss ideas and were starting to talk about what those stories might be.:”
Lucasfilm CEO George Lucas had this statement in the release: “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.”