Word is that Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher knew about the plan to go ahead with Star Wars episodes VII, VIII, and IX as early as last August. Hamill sat down with Entertainment Weekly.and told them about his lunch with Lucas and Fisher:
“[Lucas] did tell us last summer about wanting to go on and do [Episodes] VII, VIII, and IX, and that [newly appointed Lucasfilm president] Kathleen Kennedywould be doing them.”
Yeah, last August, he asked Carrie and I to have lunch with him and we did. I thought he was going to talk about either his retirement or the Star Wars TV series that I’ve heard about — which I don’t think we were going to be involved in anyway, because that takes place between the prequels and the ones we were in and, if Luke were in them, he’d be anywhere from a toddler to a teenager so they’d get an age-appropriate actor — or the 3-D releases. So when he said, “We decided we’re going to do Episodes VII, VIII, and IX,” I was just gobsmacked. “What? Are you nuts?!”
What will Lucas do with 4 billion dollars?
Since Lucas owns 100 percent of his company Lucasfilms, which has little to no corporate debt, that means that all the money after taxes goes to him. Lucas has announced the intention to donate a majority of the proceeds from the sale to charities
“George Lucas has expressed his intention, in the event the deal closes, to donate the majority of the proceeds to his philanthropic endeavors.”
“For 41 years, the majority of my time and money has been put into the company,” Lucas said in a statement Wednesday. “As I start a new chapter in my life, it is gratifying that I have the opportunity to devote more time and resources to philanthropy.”
This is really just a continuation of Lucas’ 2010 Giving Pledge commitment where Lucas stated:
“I am dedicating the majority of my wealth to improving education. It is the key to the survival of the human race. We have to plan for our collective future—and the first step begins with social, emotional, and intellectual tools we provide to our children. As humans, our greatest tool for survival is our ability to think and to adapt—as educators, storytellers, and communicators our responsibility is to continue to do so.’”
Most of his philanthropic endeavors have been aimed at education and there is little doubt that the majority of the money will be steered towards those charities and foundations. It’s a damn fine thing he is doing, who really needs anything past that first billion anyways?