So, in a quiet little move that will probably attract scant attention, Disney has bought Lucasfilm and is planning a third Star Wars trilogy.
Now my feelings about the Disney company are much like the Rebel Alliance’s feelings about the Death Star (mainly for their fantastically excessive abuse of the bad-anyway IP system). All the same, I can’t help thinking this might be a positive development. Lucas’s strengths are in coming up with ideas, and directing big special-effects scenes; but his weaknesses are in writing scripts and directing actors. That’s why the original trilogy was better than the prequels. And the original 1977 film (the only entry in the original trilogy to be written or directed by Lucas) was good because Lucas was still listening to advice in those days, from his movie-industry friends like Spielberg and Coppola, and even from the actors (which is why Luke doesn’t shout “Nooooooo!” when he finds his dead aunt and uncle, as Lucas had intended); but Lucas has long since become a white hole, from which information can exit but never enter. While the Avengers films have had their flaws, Disney has made some creative, outside-the-box choices for directors and screenwriters there; and for all my grumbles I even liked John Carter more than most people did. So I think wresting the lightsabre from Lucas’s cold live fingers might open similar opportunities for the Star Wars franchise.
There was a time when I would have been worried that Disney would try to make Star Wars too cutesey. But it hasn’t done that with the Avengers; plus after Jar Jar there’s not much deeper one can sink into that particular hole.