Everybody hates George Lucas, right? Even the actors who work with him.
Alright, that’s a little harsh, isn’t it? But it’s safe to say that Lucas’ directing style has a greater emphasis on effects and world-building than creating compelling characters and eliciting interesting performances from his actors. At least that’s how Terrence Stamp sees the issue. The actor, perhaps most famous to nerds for his role as General Zod in Superman II, appeared in Star WarsEpisode I The Phantom Menace as Chancellor Valorem, but it’s the experience of working with Lucas, rather than the work itself, that’s stayed with Stamp.
Here’s what Stamp had to say in a recent interview:
“We didn’t get on at all. I didn’t rate him that much as a director, really. I didn’t feel like he was a director of actors; he was more interested in stuff and effects. He didn’t interest me and I wouldn’t think I interested him … I came all the way back from Australia to do it. I didn’t want to but my agent leaned on me and I wanted to meet Natalie Portman because I’d seen her in The Professional. And I did meet her and she was absolutely enchanting. But on the day I’m supposed to do my scene with her, for which I’d travelled halfway around the world, I said, ‘Where’s Natalie?’ And George says, ‘That’s Natalie,’ and points to a bit of paper on the wall. It was just boring.”
And boring is a word that should never be associated with a Star Wars movie.
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ABOVE: Steampunk Boba Fett and Steampunk Doctor Doom, rapper stance. [ObviousWinner]
Today Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace returns to theatres in its brand new, 3D release. Episode I is the first of the Star Wars film saga to be re-released in 3D, with the following episodes to be released one per year. This is to the frustration of most Star Wars fans, myself included, who must wait until 2015 to get to the really good movies.
But I’m over such frustrations. I’m over being an angry nerd who gets waaaaay too pissed off about the guy who made the damn movies constantly changing them. The stress can’t be good for me. I need to learn to accept things and not let it get in the way of my love for the Wars.
That’s why when I sat in the theatre last night at midnight, with a substantial crowd for the movie considered to be the worst of all Star Wars movies, I made the commitment to look for the good in The Phantom Menace.
Here are five things about Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace that are, actually, pretty cool.
Quick, a fast food chain from France and Belgium, is releasing a trio of special burgers to celebrate the re-release of The Phantom Menace in 3D. These burgers are Star Wars themed, of course! We’ve got a “Dark Vador” burger that was inspired by Darth Vader, a “Jedi” burger that was inspired by Yoda and the Jedi, and a “Dark burger” inspired by Darth Maul.
The Jedi and Dark burgers don’t seem all that interesting but for their titles and the weird white chunky shit on the Jedi burger. Could be cheese, could be onions, could be some other congealed white substance… Now I’ve just talked myself out of ever having the Jedi burger if I were to teleport myself to Belgium. Whoops.
The Dark Vador burger is making headlines simply because the black bun is a testament to its black, black heart. Apparently the blackness is due to a dye and not because a shitload of emos shed eyeliner-infused tears over the buns.
These things will hit the restaurants on March 1st, with the Jedi burger available a few days afterwards on March 5th.
Do we have any Nerd Bastards in Europe who could go out and give these motherfuckers a try? I’d love to hear some first-hand accounts of this stuff.
George Lucas loves to meddle with his movies. They’re his movies, he can do what he likes with them and I think long ago he stopped caring about how much we fans will bitch and moan. He’s learned that no matter what we’ll line up and shell out the cash for another chance to see Star Wars on the big screen. Which is exactly what I, and I’m sure just about every other Star Wars fan, will do when Episode 1: The Phantom Menace returns to theatres February 10th in glorious 3D.
In a recent interview on Attack of the Show, Lucas talked about why his 3D conversion technology is better than what we’ve seen in theatres up till now. Which I’m glad to hear, because current post-converted 3D flicks are shit. Everything exists in only three planes and objects look like cutouts jutting off the screen. Basically, why his conversion tech will look better is because he’s involved creative people who were on set when the Star Wars films were originally filmed. It sounds like a solid theory, but I’ll just let George explain,
Okay, he makes a lot of good points. Taking a more creative approach to the process rather than converting it as quickly as possible in order to make an extra buck should produce a better 3D effect. But we’ll have to wait until February to know for sure. Lucas also talked about why we haven’t heard any news about his live-action Star Wars television series. It boils down to money. Right now to make the series the way he wants it would be waaaay to costly for television. The good news is they’re working on innovative new tech that could change the cost drastically. Like, $200 million to $50 million drastically. Assuming this would be technology that one day would become available for the masses this is exciting news for independent filmmakers. Just think how great fan films could look if they has top notch tech available to them for a fraction of the cost!
So there’s your wrap-up of what George Lucas has been busying himself with, the live-action Star Wars series is shelved until further notice but Star Wars in 3D should look fantastic. Now, if he only understood the meaning of the word prequel, maybe he wouldn’t have started released his 3D converted Star Wars films with Episode 1. But that’s a rant which could fill a hundred pages, and should be left for another day.
Has Lucas convinced you to come out for Star Wars in 3D? And are you bummed about not seeing the live-action series for while?