Star Wars fans, do I have some news for you. This is likely the story you have been waiting many long years to hear.
Disney has announced that is has reached a deal to purchase Lucasfilm Ltd. for stock and cash. Currently, Lucasfilm is owned entirely by its chairman and founder, George Lucas. The transaction is valued at roughly $4 billion.
Not wasting any time, Disney also revealed its plans to produce Star Wars Episode 7 (full title as yet undetermined) and is targeting 2015 for the film’s release. It’s unclear whether Star Wars creator and previous director Lucas will have any involvement with the film, but it looks unlikely.
The prospect of a Lucas-less Star Wars sequel (sequels is probably more accurate) has to have fans of the franchise drooling. If there’s anyone out there who can revitalize the franchise, it’s literally anyone except George Lucas. This deal means that someone else will get their hands on Star Wars and it could lead to some very interesting films.
As part of the deal, Disney is also acquiring all of Lucasfilm Ltd.’s technological properties, including LucasArts, Industrial Light & Magic, and Skywalker Sound.
“It’s now time for me to pass Star Wars on to a new generation of filmmakers,” Lucas said in an official statement. “I’ve always believed that Star Wars could live beyond me, and I thought it was important to set up the transition during my lifetime.”