Friday, September 21, 2007

Lucasnews and Jungle Cruise

George Lucas was all up in the news this week.

First, he explained why it's really okay that Sean Connery's not in Kindom of the Crystal Skull: "In the beginning, he was just in a little bit of it, and I think with the strength of Sean Connery, people would've wanted him to go all the way through the whole thing, and the story really didn't work that way. And so I think there would've been some disappointment that [his character] dropped out partway through the movie." He goes on to explain that they re-wrote the story so that another character now fills the function that Indy's dad would've. He also says that Connery thought about coming out of retirement to do it. "He was very tempted, you know, and we talked for a long time. But in the end, he just said, 'Eh, I'm playing golf.'"

Next, Lucas gave an update on the Star Wars TV shows: "Well, Clone Wars has got all the characters in it — Yoda and Anakin and Obi Wan and the Emperor and all that — so it's basically the movie. The live-action [series] is not the movie. It's the Star Wars universe, but it's characters from the saga who were [previously] minor, and it follows their stories. It's set between [movie episodes] III and IV, when the Empire has taken over. It's like Episode IV in that the Emperor and Darth Vader are heard about — people talk about them — but you never see them because it doesn't take place where they actually are. There are storm troopers and all that, but there are no Jedis."

Ah... "No Jedis." Those magical words. Say what you want about how the acting or the dialogue or Jar Jar Binks was the prequels' problem. I say, "Too much Jedi; not enough scoundrels." I'm hoping the live-action series corrects that. Having Vader and the Emperor as background threats is a good move too. It'll make them that much more mysterious and threatening.

And finally, remember how Lucas had approached David Lynch to direct Return of the Jedi? That's not the only whacked out avant garde director he talked to.

And in one, non-Lucas item this week, the Blue Sky Disney blog posted a list of Disney movies in the works, including one that I've been curious if someone was thinking about making: a film based on Disney's Jungle Cruise ride. That could be so cool.

According to the post, "The story involves a journey down a jungle river for a magical cure. No director is attached as yet. The screenplay is being written by Alfred Gough & Miles Millar (Smallville)."


Siskoid said...

Oh, now it'll be a character I'm completely not invested in! Wow, well that's exactly what I like in my fiction. Characters I couldn't care less about! (Actually describes Star Wars Episodes I-III for me.)

Michael May said...

I'm hoping that (unlike the Extended Universe stuff and, yes, Episodes I-III) this will finally give me a new Star Wars character to care about.

Maybe that's naive, but I hope. :)

Michael May said...

Actually... that might have been a bit unfair of me. I really did love Qui-Gon and wanted to know tons more about Darth Maul. I also became something of a Palpatine fan and came to care a lot more about Obi-Wan through the prequels.

The only thing that bothered me about Anakin's turning was it's effect on Obi-Wan; particularly that "You were my brother!" bit in Episode III.

Siskoid said...


I wasn't dissing the Star Wars stuff, but the replacement of Professor Jones Sr.

Michael May said...


I interepreted Lucas as saying that it's basically a throwaway part that they were going to give more substance to by having it be Indy's dad. But that it's just as well that it didn't work out that way because it only would've been frustrating for Connery fans.


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