“Star Wars” writer-director George Lucas is telling all in the new book The Star Wars Archives: 1999-2005.
While the “Star Wars” prequels remain a polarizing trilogy among franchise fans, Lucas says he was warned by Fox that centring “Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace” on a 10-year-old Anakin would “destroy” the film series.
“‘You’re going to destroy the franchise; you’re going to destroy everything!'” Lucas recalls the reaction from Fox executives who told him he’d be “‘making a movie that nobody wants to see'” with child actor Jake Lloyd in the lead, according to NME.
While “The Phantom Menace” was widely panned on its release, the negative reaction had little to do with young Anakin and focused more on Jar Jar Binks and the introduction of “midi-chlorians” into “Star Wars” lore. Despite less-than-stellar reviews, “The Phantom Menace” went on to earn more than $1 billion at the worldwide box office.
The Star Wars Archives: 1999-2005, which is due out Dec. 13, also shares more “Star Wars” details, including confirmation that Greedo shot first in “A New Hope”.
“I never designed Han to be a ruthless killer — all the good guys shoot in self-defence,” Lucas says. “When I edited the scene in 1977 you couldn’t tell who does what.”