The big news in the entertainment business this week is that The Walt Disney Company bought Lucas Film – including the Star Wars franchise– for $4 billion. With the deal Disney also gets the rights to the Indiana Jones property, the VFX house Industrial, Light & Magic (ILM) and Skywalker Sound.
And just as fans were taking in the fact that Mickey Mouse and Yoda will now be befellows they got something to look forward to– Star Wars Episode 7 will come out in 2015. News of a new Star Wars movie that George Lucas will not write or direct generated some journalists and bloggers hope that this could actually reinvigorate a much beloved franchise whose prequels were roundly panned.
Lucas named Kathleen Kennedy –the current co-chair of Lucas Film– as its new President. She’ll report to Alan Horn – the Disney Chairman. Kennedy has a prolific producing career, perhaps most known for having been Steven Spielberg’s long time producer. Lucas has entrusted her with his Star Wars universe and treasure trove of ideas so that she can oversee the making of the next three installments in the franchise.
Lucas says in the video below that he looks forward to being a fan. He’s going to focus on his philanthropy. Kennedy jokes that he could blog his opinions of what they’re doing with the films. Will he really be able to stay away from his baby?
TV relief from Hurricane Sandy
The people in the NY-NJ-CT Tri-state area will get some musical– and perhaps financial– relief from the havoc that Hurricane Sandy wrought. That is, if they have power. All of the TV channels under the NBC Universal banner will air the Friday night “Hurricane Sandy: Coming Together” telethon simultaneously on NBC, Bravo, CNBC, E!, G4, MSNBC, Style, Syfy and USA, and streamed live on the NBC.com Web site. It will be hosted by the Today show’s Matt Lauer with performances by Bruce Springstein, Jon Bon Jovi and others.
Saturday night: Louis CK will will Host SNL
So between the Friday night telethon and Saturday Night Live, you’ve got your weekend TV watching all set.
In local film news…
+he AFI film festival has begun. It runs from November 1-8 with most screenings at Grauman’s or the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood. And the tickets are free. Go to this link to find out more: http://www.afi.com/afifest/
And if you’re in Santa Monica this week and you run into a disproportionate number of men with accents wearing loafers, jeans and blazers smoking cigarettes don’t be alarmed. It’s just the AFM–the Amerian Film Market. It’s the annual trade show for the film industry where companies that buy movies – lower budget/non-studio produced movies—to distribute in their home countries. For those in the industry or covering it it’s a fascinated look at a side of the international business of film. For those who live or hang out in Santa Monica it means longer lines at restaurants.