Jeff and Daniel dissect the new Batman v Superman trailer.
Discussion about their hopes for Star Wars VII
Jeff talks about Jessica Jones and Daniel explains why it is not for him.
Discussion of the current crop of comic related shows and where they are at this point of the season. This includes Agents of SHEILD, Gotham, Flash, Arrow, and Supergirl.
Why female led genre shows are not a zero some game.
Jeff’s mad scheme to promote more female superhero toys.
Daniel talks about the Podcast Wolf 359
The regular book update.
the MST3K revival
Disney has wasted no time and getting to work with the Star Wars Franchise now that they have acquired the rights to it. On the heels of the announcement that JJ Abrahams will be directing Star Wars Episode VII it was announced that they would also be producing standalone films set in the Star Wars Universe looking at individual characters. The official announcement includes the news that the first set of these will be movies focusing on Yoda, Boba Fett, and Han Solo.
A first glance a lot of fans are going “this is a blatant money grab”, and on some level this is almost certainly true. After all the goal of most Disney movies is to make money. The unspoken addition to this is “a side movie will suck.”
On that last one I disagree, at least with it being a given. After all they are really just following a business plan that is already working for them. Specifically this looks a lot like the model of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
With Marvel you have individual movies; Captain America, Iron Man 1 and 2, Thor, and The Incredible Hulk. These movies all lead to one big movie; The Avengers. Now they are back to the individual films; Iron Man 3, Thor 2, Captain America 2, and Guardians of the Galaxy, collectively known as Phase 2. These will lead to Avengers 2. After that Disney and Marvel have already announced Ant Man and Dr. Strange for Phase 3 with a rumored Hulk movie.
The advantage of this model is that the individual movies can introduce back story and concepts that feed into the big movie freeing that movie to pick up and run with them.
With as extensive a universe as Star Wars has built over the last several years there is no reason that the some plan could not work for them as well.
And don’t tell me there is no interest in explorer more of that universe. Just look at how well the novels, comic books, and video games have sold, and many of them do not even feature the original main characters.
Right off the top of my head I can see a lot of opportunity in this idea. You make movies featuring characters like Yoda, Boba Fett, and maybe some newer characters like Han and Leia’s kids, or members of the new Jedi order. You set the stage for episode VII by dropping clues in these individual films. The buzz builds until you have the release of Episode VII. On top of that you can almost certainly lure a lot of top talent to these side films, especially with the knowledge that they do not have the pressue of making the flagship film.
Is it a gamble? Sure, but at least it is following an already proven model. And I for one would be really excited to see where they take it.
This does raise another question. What other franchises could benefit from this way of making a film series? Imagine if they had done this with League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.
I’m pretty sure that if you are reading this site, than you have certainly already learned about Disney’s purchase of Lucasfilm. And I’m equally sure that you had all kinds of knee jerk reactions to it.
I’ll be honest; my first reaction to the story was “this has to be a hoax.”
After that it became; “what are the details of the deal”
So to be thorough, here is what I understand the deal to be. The Walt Disney Company has purchased Lucasfilm outright for $4.05 billion in cash and shares of Disney stock. The result of deal means that Disney now owns all Lucasfilm properties and subsidiaries.
Let’s just take a moment to look at what that includes.
The Secret of Monkey Island
Industrial Light & Magic
Disney has been clear that their primary interest in this deal is the Star Wars property, but let’s faces it Indiana Jones is not small potatoes. Also they now have the Secret of Monkey Island, a game that was inspired in part by the Pirates of the Caribbean ride, which turned around and inspired the Pirates of the Caribbean movie. Who doesn’t want to see Guybrush Threepwood meet Jack Sparrow?
Of course all of this has led to the inevitable fannish reaction. “Oh God, Disney has bought Star Wars, they are going to water it down and make it suck.”
Yeah, about that.
I heard the same thing a few years ago. Only it was “Oh God, Disney has bought Marvel, they are going to water it down and make it suck.”
And what was the result of that deal. Well we saw it back in May, it was called The Avengers.
Look, not everything Disney does is watered down family fare. They own Pixar and people are disappointed if one of their movies is only really good. They produce Once Upon a Time on ABC which is good subversion of their own fairy tale properties. Disney does not buy up properties and then just “disneyify” them
In fact this is probably the best news we can get as Star Wars fans.
The lament since the prequels came out is that Lucas, while the visionary who created the universe, is not necessarily the best person to Shepard it. Well now he is just in a consultant role, and other people will be developing the next movies. And we are getting the next movies. Part of this deal is the confirmation that the next trilogy is going to happen, which was not the case prior to it.
Another possibility that a lot of people are excited about is the idea that Disney will give us what we have been asking to have for years now, the original trilogy rereleased in its original theatrically form. This means we may finally see Han shoot first in blue-ray.
Not that there isn’t problems. 20th Century Fox owns the distribution rights to the entire film franchise until 2020, and for the original Star Wars the hold the rights forever. But all that means is that there is a deal to be made. Disney has had similar issues with Paramount over the Marvel movies and made it work.
Another reason this should not be so shocking is that there is already so much integration between Disney and Lucas. If you go to Disneyland or Walt Disney World there are rides for both Star Wars and Indiana Jones. There is also a live audience interaction show called the Jedi Academy. On top of that there is plenty of merchandise for both franchises in the parks. So this means that Disney does not need to worry about renewing those licenses any more.
So I say let’s all chill out, take a deep breath, and see where this new turn of events takes us.