Is George Lucas right about film’s future?

When George Lucas predicts something in the American cinema, people ought to take notice, which is why his Coppola-eque declaration that movies in future will be filled with $15 million pictures (as, one supposes, the star system breaks down into interchangable boy-toys and sexpots, and the movie format slides inexorably toward Lucas’s favorite obsession, digital video) is so grim. We’ll ask the obligatory advertising correlary: Would studios bother to advertise $15 million movies? Could it sustain the entire entertainment/ publicity/ corporate-logrolling/ event-movie complex represented by King Kong, Access Hollywood, Extra and Entertainment Tonight? And what would become of movie culture, which as recently as the ’70s was keyed to discussions of a film’s merits and meaning, and which in the ’80s gave way to the MBA view of the world—i.e., how much money a movie cost and made? As long as a movie ticket costs the same, surely that’s the least interesting discussion about movies one could have.

—Posted by Gregory Solman

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