Whether you’re a fan of his or not, you surely know that filmmaker Kevin Smith has a lot to say. With or without a new movie to show, Smith travels around the world to tell stories from his experiences in the real world and the entertainment business. Every year, he fills Hall H at San Diego Comic Con for a speaking engagement, and the rest of the year he spends a lot of time talking on his Smodcast Internet Radio network. As of last year, we even get to see him every week on AMC’s ‘Comic Book Men’ (which returns tomorrow night) talking about a number of geeky topics with his Secret Stash buddies Walt, Bryan, Ming, and Mike.
But when it comes to ‘Star Wars’ and the recent news about J.J. Abrams taking over ‘Episode VII’ and Bob Iger announcing the potential standalone films, everyone has been talking non-stop about it in a Kevin Smith fashion. Well, the man himself weighs in on the matter in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter. In the quote below, he talks about how the new films are good from a business standpoint, as well as a cultural one:
“Now part of the Disney empire, ‘Star Wars’ will become as ubiquitous as Starbucks. It’s now as American as baseball and apple pie and as universal as Coca-Cola. In our current business climate of outsourcing, ‘Star Wars’ may be America’s last remaining dependable export. So it’s a good thing they’re taking the expanded universe approach: giving Yoda, Boba Fett and Han Solo their own movies is creatively and financially ingenious. Grouse though they may that it’s not ‘their Star Wars’, every old-school fan will line up to see a Yoda origin story, or to see David Boreanaz as a young Han Solo winning the Millennium Falcon from Donald Glover’s baby-faced Lando Calrissian (Yeah, I’m calling it here!).”
If you’re a member of the camp that claims that Disney is doing this just for the money, then I have two words for you: Well, duh! But that doesn’t make that a bad thing as long as they’re looking to do it right as well. Smith touches on that too and mentions that even George Lucas did a lot with the franchise to make money:
“You can’t call it the commodification of ‘Star Wars’ because the creator himself first commodified ‘Star Wars’ a long, long time ago in a decade far, far away with toys and bed sheets and inflatable light sabers. ‘Star Wars’ has always been big business. It’s a roller-coaster ride in a theme park: thrilling, fun and good for repeat business. And as you leave the ride, you’re compelled to buy a T-shirt and snow globe memento. Disney paid billions for ‘Star Wars’, but with the JJ news and now this subsequent info about the spinoff flicks, they’re gonna make double what they paid in the first 10 years alone. After that, the financial Force will be with them. Always.”
New Lando and Han?
Kevin Smith makes a lot of good points here, especially when he mentions Donald Glover as Lando. I know it’s pretty well known around ScienceFiction.com that I’m the resident fanboy when it comes to anything related to the ‘Clerks’ creator, but he’s absolutely right when he says that old-school fans will line up to see these movies whether they like them or not. I know I will! And we’ll all definitely be talking about them afterwards. Let’s just hope that we don’t have to have another Jar Jar Binks conversation. Ever again.
What are your thoughts on the whole ‘Star Wars’ situation? Share them in the comments below!