Empire Producer Gary Kurtz Reflects On Where It All Went Wrong


This year is the 30th anniversary of “The Empire Strikes Back,” the “Star Wars” sequel that many fans consider the pinnacle moment in a franchise that has pulled in $16 billion in box office and merchandising. But 1980 was also the year that Kurtz and Lucas realized the Jedi universe wasn’t big enough for the both of them.

“I could see where things were headed,” Kurtz said. “The toy business began to drive the [Lucasfilm] empire. It’s a shame. They make three times as much on toys as they do on films. It’s natural to make decisions that protect the toy business, but that’s not the best thing for making quality films. The first film and ‘Empire’ were about story and character, but I could see that George’s priorities were changing.”

Read more Lucas-bashing from Kurtz at the LA TIMES while I go play with my toys.

Oh, and in a related story, here is a link to the “Raiders of the Lost Jedi Temple of Doom” Show from Disney’s Last Tour to Endor event.

(I know, George. I feel the same way about it, too. And that’s coming from someone who likes Jar Jar)


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