Disney Buys Lucasfilm, “Star Wars” Franchise for $4 Billion [UPDATED]

It’s not April Fools’ Day. The Walt Disney Company is acquiring Lucasfilm and the Star Wars franchise for $4.05 billion. The press release:

Global leader in high-quality family entertainment agrees to acquire world-renowned Lucasfilm Ltd, including legendary STAR WARS franchise.

Acquisition continues Disney’s strategic focus on creating and monetizing the world’s best branded content, innovative technology and global growth to drive long-term shareholder value.

Lucasfilm to join company’s global portfolio of world class brands including Disney, ESPN, Pixar, Marvel and ABC.

STAR WARS: EPISODE 7 feature film targeted for release in 2015.

An investor conference call will take place at approximately 4:30 p.m. EDT / 1:30 p.m. PDT today, October 30, 2012. Details for the call are listed in the release.

BURBANK, Calif. & SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Continuing its strategy of delivering exceptional creative content to audiences around the world, The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) has agreed to acquire Lucasfilm Ltd. in a stock and cash transaction. Lucasfilm is 100% owned by Lucasfilm Chairman and Founder, George Lucas.

Under the terms of the agreement and based on the closing price of Disney stock on October 26, 2012, the transaction value is $4.05 billion, with Disney paying approximately half of the consideration in cash and issuing approximately 40 million shares at closing. The final consideration will be subject to customary post-closing balance sheet adjustments.

“Lucasfilm reflects the extraordinary passion, vision, and storytelling of its founder, George Lucas,” said Robert A. Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Walt Disney Company. “This transaction combines a world-class portfolio of content including Star Wars, one of the greatest family entertainment franchises of all time, with Disney’s unique and unparalleled creativity across multiple platforms, businesses, and markets to generate sustained growth and drive significant long-term value.”

“For the past 35 years, one of my greatest pleasures has been to see Star Wars passed from one generation to the next,” said George Lucas, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Lucasfilm. “It’s now time for me to pass Star Wars on to a new generation of filmmakers. 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. I’m confident that with Lucasfilm under the leadership of Kathleen Kennedy, and having a new home within the Disney organization, Star Wars will certainly live on and flourish for many generations to come. Disney’s reach and experience give Lucasfilm the opportunity to blaze new trails in film, television, interactive media, theme parks, live entertainment, and consumer products.”

Under the deal, Disney will acquire ownership of Lucasfilm, a leader in entertainment, innovation and technology, including its massively popular and “evergreen” Star Wars franchise and its operating businesses in live action film production, consumer products, animation, visual effects, and audio post production. Disney will also acquire the substantial portfolio of cutting-edge entertainment technologies that have kept audiences enthralled for many years. Lucasfilm, headquartered in San Francisco, operates under the names Lucasfilm Ltd., LucasArts, Industrial Light & Magic, and Skywalker Sound, and the present intent is for Lucasfilm employees to remain in their current locations.

Kathleen Kennedy, current Co-Chairman of Lucasfilm, will become President of Lucasfilm, reporting to Walt Disney Studios Chairman Alan Horn. Additionally she will serve as the brand manager for Star Wars, working directly with Disney’s global lines of business to build, further integrate, and maximize the value of this global franchise. Ms. Kennedy will serve as executive producer on new Star Wars feature films, with George Lucas serving as creative consultant. Star Wars Episode 7 is targeted for release in 2015, with more feature films expected to continue the Star Wars saga and grow the franchise well into the future.

The acquisition combines two highly compatible family entertainment brands, and strengthens the long-standing beneficial relationship between them that already includes successful integration of Star Wars content into Disney theme parks in Anaheim, Orlando, Paris and Tokyo.

Driven by a tremendously talented creative team, Lucasfilm’s legendary Star Wars franchise has flourished for more than 35 years, and offers a virtually limitless universe of characters and stories to drive continued feature film releases and franchise growth over the long term. Star Wars resonates with consumers around the world and creates extensive opportunities for Disney to deliver the content across its diverse portfolio of businesses including movies, television, consumer products, games and theme parks. Star Wars feature films have earned a total of $4.4 billion in global box to date, and continued global demand has made Star Wars one of the world’s top product brands, and Lucasfilm a leading product licensor in the United States in 2011. The franchise provides a sustainable source of high quality, branded content with global appeal and is well suited for new business models including digital platforms, putting the acquisition in strong alignment with Disney’s strategic priorities for continued long-term growth.

The Lucasfilm acquisition follows Disney’s very successful acquisitions of Pixar and Marvel, which demonstrated the company’s unique ability to fully develop and expand the financial potential of high quality creative content with compelling characters and storytelling through the application of innovative technology and multiplatform distribution on a truly global basis to create maximum value. Adding Lucasfilm to Disney’s portfolio of world class brands significantly enhances the company’s ability to serve consumers with a broad variety of the world’s highest-quality content and to create additional long-term value for our shareholders.

The Boards of Directors of Disney and Lucasfilm have approved the transaction, which is subject to clearance under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act, certain non-United States merger control regulations, and other customary closing conditions. The agreement has been approved by the sole shareholder of Lucasfilm.

Note: Additional information and comments from Robert A. Iger, chairman and CEO, The Walt Disney Company, and Jay Rasulo, senior executive vice president and CFO, The Walt Disney Company, regarding Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm, are attached.

Investor Conference Call:

An investor conference call will take place at approximately 4:30 p.m. EDT / 1:30 p.m. PDT today, October 30, 2012. To listen to the Webcast, turn your browser to http://thewaltdisneycompany.com/investors/events or dial in domestically at (888) 771-4371 or internationally at (847) 585-4405. For both dial-in numbers, the participant pass code is 33674546.

The discussion will be available via replay on the Disney Investor Relations website through November 13, 2012 at 5:00 PM EST/2:00 PM PST.

ROBERT A. IGER, CHAIRMAN AND CEO, THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY
REMARKS FOR ANALYSTS REGARDING DISNEY’S ACQUISITION OF LUCASFILM LTD., AS PREPARED

As we just announced, The Walt Disney Company has agreed to acquire Lucasfilm and its world class portfolio of creative content – including the legendary Star Wars franchise – along with all of its operating businesses, including Industrial Light & Magic and Skywalker Sound.

George Lucas is a visionary, an innovator and an epic storyteller – and he’s built a company at the intersection of entertainment and technology to bring some of the world’s most unforgettable characters and stories to screens across the galaxy. He’s entertained, inspired, and defined filmmaking for almost four decades and we’re incredibly honored that he has entrusted the future of that legacy to Disney.

Disney has had a great relationship with George that goes back a long way – with Star Wars theme attractions in our parks in Anaheim, Orlando, Paris and Tokyo. This acquisition builds on that foundation and combines two of the strongest family entertainment brands in the world. It makes sense, not just because of our brand compatibility and previous success together, but because Disney respects and understands – better than just about anyone else – the importance of iconic characters and what it takes to protect and leverage them effectively to drive growth and create value.

Lucasfilm fits perfectly with Disney’s strategic priorities. It is a sustainable source of branded, high quality creative content with tremendous global appeal that will benefit all of Disney’s business units and is incredibly well suited for new business models, including digital platforms. Adding the Lucasfilm IP to our existing Disney, Pixar and Marvel IP clearly enhances our ability to serve consumers, strengthening our competitive position — and we are confident we can earn a return on invested capital well in excess of our cost of capital.

Star Wars in particular is a strong global brand, and one of the greatest family entertainment franchises of all time, with hundreds of millions of fans around the globe. Its universe of more than 17,000 characters inhabiting several thousand planets spanning 20,000 years offers infinite inspiration and opportunities – and we’re already moving forward with plans to continue the epic Star Wars saga.

The last Star Wars movie release was 2005’s Revenge of the Sith – and we believe there’s substantial pent up demand. In 2015, we’re planning to release Star Wars Episode 7 – the first feature film under the “Disney-Lucasfilm” brand. That will be followed by Episodes 8 and 9 – and our long term plan is to release a new Star Wars feature film every two to three years. We’re very happy that George Lucas will be creative consultant on our new Star Wars films and that Kathleen Kennedy, the current Co-Chair of Lucasfilm, will executive produce. George handpicked Kathy earlier this year to lead Lucasfilm into the future. She’ll join Disney as President of Lucasfilm, reporting into Walt Disney Studios Chairman Alan Horn and integrating and building the Star Wars franchise across our company.

Our successful acquisitions of Pixar and Marvel prove Disney’s unique ability to grow brands and expand high-quality creative content to its fullest franchise potential and maximum value.

We’ve leveraged Pixar’s terrific characters and stories into franchises across our company – from feature films to consumer products online games, major attractions in our theme parks, and more.

The 2006 Pixar acquisition delivered more than great Pixar content — it also delivered the means to energize and revitalize the creative engine at Walt Disney Animation – which was crucial to our long term success. Animation is the heart and soul of Disney and our successful creative resurgence will be on full display this weekend when Wreck-It-Ralph opens in theaters across the country.

Our acquisition of Marvel three years later combined Marvel’s strong global brand and world-renowned library of characters with Disney’s creative skills, unparalleled global portfolio of entertainment properties, and an integrated business structure that maximizes the value of creative content across multiple platforms and territories. Our first two Marvel films – Thor and Captain America grossed a total of more than $800 million at the box office. This year, Marvel’s The Avengers grossed more than $1.5 billion to become the world’s third highest grossing movie of all time – and an important and lucrative franchise for us.

We’re looking forward to a robust slate of new Marvel movies – starting with Iron Man 3 and Thor: The Dark World next year, followed by Captain America: The Winter Soldier in 2014. And, as we announced previously, Joss Whedon is writing and directing Avengers 2 and developing a Marvel-based series for ABC.

Pixar and Marvel both fit our criteria for strategic acquisitions – they add great IP that benefits multiple Disney businesses for years to come, and continue to create value well in excess of their purchase price. The acquisition of Lucasfilm is in keeping with this proven strategy for success and we expect it to create similar opportunity for Disney to drive long-term value for our shareholders.

We’re clearly excited about this move forward. We believe we can do great things with these amazing assets….we have a proven track record of maximizing the value of our strategic acquisitions…. and we’re poised to do the same with this one.


JAY RASULO, SENIOR EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT AND CFO, THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY
REMARKS FOR ANALYSTS REGARDING DISNEY’S ACQUISITION OF LUCASFILM LTD., AS PREPARED

Lucasfilm, and more specifically the Star Wars franchise, fits perfectly within the Disney portfolio of intellectual properties and the strategic and financial implications of this acquisition are compelling. Our team has spent a tremendous amount of time evaluating this deal and we have concluded we are uniquely positioned to maximize the value of Lucasfilm’s IP in a manner that can generate substantial value for our shareholders above and beyond the purchase price.

In this transaction we will acquire rights to the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchises, a highly talented and expert team, Lucasfilm’s best-in-class post production businesses, Industrial Light and Magic and Skywalker Sound, and a suite of cutting edge entertainment technologies. Our valuation focused almost entirely on the financial potential of the Star Wars franchise, which we expect to provide us with a stream of storytelling opportunities for years to come delivered via all relevant platforms on a global basis.

There are a number of ways our company will derive value from Lucasfilm’s intellectual property—some of which can be realized immediately while others will accrue to us over time. George and his team have built Star Wars into one of the most successful and enduring family entertainment franchises in history, as well as one of the best selling licensed character merchandise brands in the U.S. and around the world. However, we believe there is great opportunity to further expand the consumer products business. Today, Star Wars is heavily skewed toward toys and North America. We see great opportunity domestically to extend the breadth and depth of the Star Wars franchise into other categories. We also plan to leverage Disney’s global consumer products organization to grow the Star Wars consumer products business internationally.

Let me note that in 2012 Lucasfilm’s consumer products business is expected to generate total licensing revenue that is comparable to the roughly $215 million in consumer products revenue Marvel generated in 2009, the year in which we announced our acquisition. With renewed film releases, and the support we can give the Star Wars property on our Disney-branded TV channels, we expect that business to grow substantially and profitably for many years to come.

We also expect to create significant value in the film business. We plan to release the first new Star Wars film in 2015, and then plan to release one film every two to three years. These films will be released and distributed as part of our target slate of 8-10 live-action films per year, and will augment Disney’s already strong creative pipeline for many years to come. Lucasfilm has not released a Star Wars film since Revenge of the Sith in 2005. However, adjusted for inflation, as well as growth in both international box office and 3D, we estimate the three most recent Star Wars films would have averaged about $1.5 billion in global box office in today’s dollars. This speaks to the franchise’s strength, global appeal and the great opportunity we have in the film business.

We also expect to utilize Star Wars in other businesses including Parks & Resorts, in games and in our television business. These initiatives were also considered in our valuation.

Under the terms of the agreement, Disney will buy Lucasfilm for $4.05 billion, consisting of approximately fifty percent cash and fifty percent in Disney stock. Based on Friday’s closing price of Disney stock, we expect to issue approximately 40 million Disney shares in this transaction. We continue to believe our shares are attractively priced at current levels and therefore, we currently intend to repurchase all of the shares issued within the next two years– and that’s in addition to what we planned to repurchase in the absence of the transaction.

Our valuation of Lucasfilm is roughly comparable to the value we placed on Marvel when we announced that acquisition in 2009. Our Lucasfilm valuation is almost entirely driven by the Star Wars franchise, so any success from other franchises would provide upside to our base case. I realize it may be a challenge for you to quantify our opportunity given the limited amount of publicly available information. But to give you some perspective on the size of the Lucasfilm business– in 2005, the year in which the most recent Star Wars film was released, Lucasfilm generated $550 million in operating income. We’ve taken a conservative approach in our valuation assumptions, including continued erosion of the home entertainment market, and we expect this acquisition to create value for our shareholders.

In terms of the impact on our financials, we expect the acquisition to be dilutive to our EPS by low single digit percentage points in fiscal 2013 and 2014 and become accretive to EPS in 2015.

Our capital allocation philosophy has been consistent since Bob took over as CEO. In addition to returning capital to shareholders, we have invested, both organically and through acquisitions, in high quality, branded content that can be seamlessly leveraged across our businesses. Our acquisition of Lucasfilm is entirely consistent with this strategy, and we’re incredibly excited by the prospect of building on Lucasfilm’s successful legacy to create significant value for our shareholders.

UPDATE (9:42PM ET): George Lucas and Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy discuss the Disney buyout in this video:

UPDATE (10/31 — 4:12AM ET): Disney Chairman/CEO Robert Iger talks about the Lucasfilm acquisition:


  • http://thegagaman.co.uk/ Gagaman

    Disney to rename themselves to Buy N large by the year 2025 confirmed.

  • Andrew

    Great just what we needed a fatter Disney as if Pixar and Marvel weren’t enough.

  • Tim Hodge

    So, does this mean that Brenda Chapman is working for Disney again?

    • http://youtube.com/user/Mesterius1 Mesterius

      This comment made my day. Hollywood… you never know where you’ve got it.

    • http://celtherapy.net Kev

      Hahaa! That is an excellent question

  • Toonio

    Yikes! Guess George was thinking on teaching their kids about building their on wealths but I think he over did it.

    Now wonder if Lucas enterprises has such a huge revenue stream to divest the Star Wars franchise and where is the government sitting in all this an the anti-monopoly laws.

    On the other hand it seems the Star Wars franchise may continue after episode six after all,

  • http://teddyhose.com Teddy Hose

    Meh, seems like Disney scoops up companies after their golden years, kind of like a vortex as they’re the same. There’s lots of other good stuff brewing out there that doesn’t depend on nostalgia.

    • T.D.

      Like Marvel and Pixar. Bad money after bad money.

  • http://mhg-portfolio.blogspot.dk/ Martin Holm-Grevy

    “I felt a great disturbance in the Force… as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced. I fear something terrible has happened”

  • Richard

    I guess Disney isn’t such a small world after all.

    I think it’s strange and cool.

  • SnappingNero

    Conference call said they plan to release a new star wars movie every two years starting 2015. They will be pumping them out!

    After the prequels I think it’s great Lucas hands over the reigns to new blood, I just hope Disney dosen’t over do it.

  • Hannah

    major companies owned or formally owned by Disney:
    -Pixar
    -ABC
    -Hearst Corporation (50%)
    -ESPN
    -Hulu (27%)
    -Playdom
    -Club Penguin
    -Baby Einstein
    -Marvel
    -The Muppets
    -Miramax
    -Buena Vista
    -Touchstone Pictures
    -Hollywood Pictures
    -History Channel (42%)
    -Soapnet

    Monopoly much?

    • Luke

      Disney doesn’t own Hearst, they sold Miramax, Soapnet no longer exists, and Hollywood Pictures hasn’t made a new movie since the mid 2000s. Just to Clarify, not to disregard your concerns.

      • Justin Delbert

        My Aunt’s a Direct TV user; SOAPNet still exists. Disney Junior showed up, but it never replaced SOAPNet on Direct TV.

    • http://dtoons.com Dtoons

      They used to own DiC and Power Rangers, but they sold those back. They still own a whole lot of Fox Kids shows though.

      Monopoly? Nah. I always felt whatever they don’t own, Time Warner or Viacom does.

  • eman

    I foresee thousands of forced sequels.

  • http://ryanrosendal.blogspot.com Ryan

    Well, I guess Lucas wasn’t kidding about retiring.

    And $4 Billion for “Star Wars” is a bargain…

  • Liam Scanlan

    I guess this means Leia is a Disney Princess. Okay, bad joke on my part. Anyway, I get the feeling Disney make Disney a label, like Touchstone, Hollywod Pictures or Marvel.

    • snappy

      Actually, you are right, Leia is a Disney princess and I would not be surprised if she showed up amongst them in the future

      • Bud

        Lucas today apparently answered this question by saying “only if she’s wearing her slave outfit.”

  • Thomas Anderson

    [Comment removed by editors. Per our commenting guidelines, "It is OK to post with a nickname or alias, but your email address (which we will NEVER share publicly), must be a real, permanent email address. Comments with fake or non-permanent emails will be deleted."]

    • Thomas Anderson

      I’m saying it’s smart. And now there’ll be qc there to stop him from making bad decisions. PLus now we get to see cross overs like Magneto vs Darth Vader. Radicool.

  • http://oye-studios.daportfolio.com Seni

    WASN’T BUYING MARVEL ENOUGH??!

  • http://cartoonbrew Christian

    Anybody who can sue Disney for becoming a monopoly. I mean with this, Disney will only need a few steps before they become the only big media company around.

    • Kristjan B.

      I don’t think so TIme Warner is still the biggest,

  • http://www.hunteachother.com Max W

    The press photo alone accurately describes how good of an idea this is.

  • Andy

    This is pretty big news. Disney is a great home for the Star Wars franchise. It will be interesting to see how they handle the new films.

  • Brett

    Let’s be honest, the franchise is probably in slightly better hands now.

  • Vzk

    Does this mean we’ll get Pirates of the Caribbean: The Secret of Monkey Island?

    • http://ryanrosendal.blogspot.com Ryan

      Dude, “Grim Fandango: The Movie.” That’s where it’s at.

    • ximeria

      This comment wins the internet XD

  • Daniel J. Drazen

    There are pundits who have compared Republican economic strategies to the practices of the robber barons of the 19th century.

    And I guess Disney is in the running to be Standard Oil.

  • http://numynumynomnom.blogspot.com M.V

    I guess its not much of a surprise. Disney has had there hand in that cookie jar for years. They have treated recent acquisitions pretty well. I just feel the distinctive Disney brand is getting extremely diluted.

    • http://voyagesextraordinaires.blogspot.com Cory Gross

      That’s exactly how I feel. WDC, Inc. is on its way to becoming an IP firm, of which “Disney” is just one suite of brands. Given that they are consistent underperformers relative to their other brands, I can see them eventually shutting down the Walt Disney Studios and Walt Disney Animation Studios. The Disney Parks brand is already well on its way to becoming a Universal Studios-style amusement park chain. The biggest choice here is whether they make Tomorrowland into a Marvel-land or a Star Wars-land.

      I’m not at all worried about Star Wars… That ship sailed a decade ago. I’m worried that with every new IP acquired by WDC, Inc., the Disney brand is going to sit further and further back. Disney’s best days are behind it, and if I want to enjoy a Disney theme park experience, I’m probably going to have to rely on the Oriental Land Company rather than WDC, Inc.

    • Doug

      I don’t agree. The Disney brand has been kept well separated, for example, from the Marvel brand; none of the current crop of Marvel superhero movies feel Disney-fied. Same with the recent Muppet movie. Pixar is harder to separate out, but they were given the opportunity to make features because of Disney in the first place. I see Disney being an excellent “brand manager”. It’s not like Chris Berman has to share the 2 Minute Drill with Mickey & Donald. I think as long as Bob Iger is in charge, they will make very calculated and intelligent choices for this new brand under their wing. They’ve played very smart on an ever expanding field since Iger came in and haven’t made a serious mis-step yet. He’s bought highly visible brands and not screwed them up. I’d rather see someone else in charge of Star Wars, anyway. Did you see Episode One, Two and/or Three? Time to pass the torch. Who better? Fox? Sony? Time/Warner? I think Disney is smart enough to make sure the Star Wars brand doesn’t get diluted. Why dilute it? It’ll be a huge win for Disney to keep it moving forward on a separate trajectory. And don’t sell George short; he IS the brains behind the business of Star Wars and made himself a billionaire 3 times over as proof of his business acumen. He had no need to sell, but apart from the lure of the lucre (he did, after all, double his net worth while signing that piece of paper as Bob Iger looked on with a smile), selling to Disney is a very smart play on George’s part. He’s seen what they’ve done with Marvel & Pixar; they’ve made a freakin’ huge pile of money on both fronts. I don’t think that was lost on George. I think Disney is a very smart bet to keep the Star Wars property alive for years to come.

      • http://voyagesextraordinaires.blogspot.com Cory Gross

        You misinterpret, Doug. I’m not afraid of Disney diluting Star Wars. I’m afraid of Star Wars diluting Disney.

        If you walk into Disneyland today, you can already see how WDC, Inc. is selling out the Disney brand. Tomorrowland is ALREADY a hodge-podge of licensed properties, including Star Wars and Pixar, and there are talks about an Iron Man attraction. They already thought nothing about slapping Jack Sparrow all over the original PIrates of the Caribbean ride and Tom Sawyer’s Island. And that is a film franchise that Disney drove into the ground, as opposed to John Carter which never got off it. It’s going to be impossible to go into one of the WDC, Inc. owned parks and have an undiluted Disney experience.

        As for Star Wars, you mentioned Episodes I-III… Do you REALLY think that WDC, Inc. bought Lucasfilm because they wanted to preserve the artistic integrity of the original trilogy?

        • Doug

          Interesting. I was looking at it the other way round. Listen, I was heartbroken when they remade the Swiss Family Robinson treehouse – Tarzan was a Disney film, but that didn’t ease my sadness. I get what you mean about Jack Sparrow/Tom Sawyer, but it is a dilemma for the Park overseers. If I was to guess, I’d think they’ll keep Disneyland as much intact as it is now, within certain parameters, and do whatever they want with DCA and other parks worldwide. I’d be stunned if the lure of an entirely Star Wars-themed park escaped their notice. Again, I was thinking ‘protect other properties from the mouse’ not ‘protect the mouse from other properties’. Bears thinking about. Thanks!

  • Karl Hungus

    This is great news for independent creators. Take risks people! Because the majority of popular properties are in the hands of a company ruled by committee and beholden to shareholders.

  • EarthX

    Seems a lot like when Henson was initially in talks with Disney. He created a franchise and wants to make sure it is still around long after he passes on.

    Disney generally fits the bill when it comes to looking for a company that will be around “forever.”

    • http://johnpannozzi.blogspot.com John Pannozzi

      Shame that the Henson family is no longer involved with the Muppets.

  • Steve Hess

    Will Howard the Duck join Oswald the Rabbit of characters that are brought back from the dead?

    • http://johnpannozzi.blogspot.com John Pannozzi

      Disney already got Howard when they bought Marvel, FYI.

  • Wouter

    Brace yourselves, Disney hate comments are coming.

  • Mark

    I guess Dark Horse Comics will lose it’s license to Marvel which ironically published the original line of comics. I wonder how the Lucasfilm Paramount deal will work since Paramount has exclusive distribution rights. What I loved about PIXAR and Lucasfilm was that they were independant companies that made it big, now they’re not. It’s going to be so much harder to compete now.

    • snappy

      I was thinking with Paramount ties to Star Wars and also Marvel films, I wonder if Disney may be eyeballing them in the future. That would mean they would have Star Trek as well, right?

  • Mark

    INDIAN JONES and the SEVEN DWARFS

  • Amir

    -B-
    $4 Billion?!!
    And then they say Disney don’t have money for 2D animation!!!
    Pathetic….

    • strider

      No one ever said that…

    • MYWA

      Yeah, no one ever said they don’t have the money for 2D animation. They just don’t have the balls. Or the talent. Or the time.

  • http://www.moviecappa.blogspot.com Mike Caracappa

    If this means taking the Star Wars Franchise out of George Lucas’ hands, that can only be good news for Star Wars fans. At least now it will potentially be given to someone who hasn’t forgotten what Star Wars is all about.

    • Alberto

      Sure, like the people that made Tron Legacy. They clearly understood what the world they were working on… oh wait.

      • strider

        They are only distributing it.

  • Nicola lemay

    gee…what’s left to buy for Disney? ghibli in Japan?

    • snappy

      I imagine something like Sega, or Nintendo might be in their eyes, I’d say Nintendo, Warner will likely buy up Sega, may be SNK, Disney may buy Capcom and Square. I think Warner might buy the BBC.

      • Andrew Kieswetter

        Disney buying Nintendo? Mickey Mouse meets Pikachu!

        • Chris

          I think they have a partnership with Square Enix, who made the Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts series of rpgs.

  • T.D.

    So it’s all Warner/Turner/CN/DC/Mad, Fox, and Disney/Pixar/Marvel/Lucas now? Wow.

  • Pedro Nakama

    Let me get this straight…
    Lucasfilm started Pixar and sold it to Jobs. Disney bought it from Jobs and now bought Lucasfilm.

    • Bud

      Lucas didn’t “start” Pixar. The computer division run by Ed Catmull was sold in Lucas’ divorce to Steve Jobs, and it shortly thereafter became Pixar.

  • gbop

    there is so much sadness in his eyes

  • Linda

    Just … look at him. That must be the saddest picture of George Lucas.

  • http://nachosconcarne.cartoonsdammit.com Kitschensyngk

    If you only knew the power of the Dark Side…

  • Silver

    Why am I more worried about The Clone Wars series than the rest of the franchise?

    • Bud

      Because nothing could be worse than the clone wars junk.

  • Jules

    Disney just stole “Robot Chicken’s” whole act.

  • http://deleted OtherDan

    Wow. Disney has really taken a new direction since Eisner-not necessarily a good one: Pixar, Marvel, “Q-Bert”, Star Wars (let’s face it)…What happened to Disney? What happened to original artistry? The only thing that I love is that they put out great art books now. Gosh, next you’re gonna have Jony Ives copying Microsoft Windows 8!

    • snappy

      They own Q-Bert now? When did this happen?

      • OtherDan

        No. That was just a reference to “Wreck It Ralphs” reliance on other properties to fill Box Office seats.

      • Chris Sobieniak

        No, Sony/Columbia Pictures still has ‘em!

  • Steve M.

    Really not sure what to think of this other then……

    ….are they gonna make pointless crossover movies with this?

  • udx

    Great. Just great. Now

    1) I expect a Stan Lee cameo in the next Star Wars film and

    2) I want Disney to do a Mickey/Minnie crossover with Star Wars just for the heck of it.(Except I want Minnie as the main protagonist)

    • strider

      Stan Lee only makes cameos in Marvel movies and what is wrong with that?

  • http://time.com Harry McCracken

    Disney has essentially become a high-end Classic Media: a roll-up of other people’s characters.

  • Baron Lego

    CGI “Ewoks” cartoon reboot in 3… 2… 1….

  • Sarah J

    Oy, it’s like they’re trying to achieve monopoly! I’m wondering if they did this partially in an attempt to get back their male audience. I know the past couple years they’ve been trying to do that, but I assumed that they already succeeded at this point.

  • Jody Morgan

    I tried to read through the article, honestly, but the marketese was so thick I felt my brain shutting down.

    I did read that they plan on releasing a new Star Wars movie every three years. This can only end well.

  • Andrew Kieswetter

    I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read the headline! I was going to think ‘it’s a little too early for April Fool’. I really don’t think there should be a Star Wars Episode 7. What’s going to happen,Darth & the Emperor get resurrected? I’ve a bad feeling about this.

    • Chris

      The Emperor actually does come back (Along with Boba Fett) In Dark Horse’s Dark Empire trilogy. Basically he used his force spirit to transfer to a clone.

      As for Vader, I suppose he could return as a ghost, but then it would be Hayden Christensen *shudder*

  • http://www.dailygrail.com Red Pill Junkie

    Join me, and together we can rule the galaxy Wall Street!

  • http://poptique.blogspot.co.uk/ Poptique

    This is what happens when no-one goes to see Tron or John Carter…

    • Bud

      …if they had at least been movies worth seeing…

  • http://www.daryl-rhystaylor.co.uk DarylT

    Not that surprising if you think about it.

  • http://www.daryl-rhystaylor.co.uk DarylT

    I’m actually not that surprised by this news. George Lucas has talked about retiring for a while and Disney and Lucasfilm have a partnership going back decades. Both Star War and Indiana Jones feel so much part of Disneyland that in one respect it feels like they have finally come home.

    As for the news of a sevenh movie I say don’t be naive people. I’ve heard rumours about Episode 7, 8 and 9 for years now. I mean get real, Star Wars is a globally recognised brand that will never go away. And how do you keep a brand fresh, by suppling it with new content. Besides I think Star Wars actually needs some new content, how many times can the go over the first six movies. It was inevitable.

  • Kate

    Well, on a very odd 80s cartoon note, Muppet Babies cartoon fans should be happy. Disney has no reason not to release the whole series on DVD now. Supposedly, the only thing holding up a release of the series was licensing movie clips from movies like Star Wars and Indy. Now Disney owns the whole lot.

    • snappy

      I didn’t realize that, I hope Disney will actually act on this and not let the show linger in the vaults. That is one thing I am afraid of the Vaults.

      I just realized there are pages in the comments, I don’t like that.

  • http://www.spiteyourface.com tony mines

    Sigh. Simple math: The company that owns Darth Vader is the company that owns Nemo the fish is the company that owns Iron Man is the company that owns Indiana Jones is the company that owns Tron is the company that owns Wolverine is the company that owns Kermit, and they believe with absolute confidence that those names can convince you to go see their movies as they play them against each other and they will charge you on the door.
    Ask yourself, WHERE in that scenario is the requirement for them to make a film worth your while?

    • strider

      Disney doesn’t own X-men movie rights. People go see the movies because they are good and want to see it.

  • James Fox

    1. No one cares about Star Wars anymore
    2. Bob Iger makes us wish we had Mike Eisner back as pres and/or the last remaining heir of Walt’s to be the CEO
    3. Lucus made a big mistake due to Disney’s track record of crap marketing and scheduling of their films under Iger’s regime

    • strider

      Umm your facts are so wrong since they are still making billions. Star Wars dead? Yea because they sell a lot of merchandise and already have a bunch hype right now for the films only.

  • http://a113animation.com William Jardine

    I really don’t get what all the pessimism is about. People bitch when Lucas directs the films, they bitch when he sells the films to someone else; as a Star Wars fan, I’m pretty damn excited about new films!

    As for Disney, they’ve done no wrong by Pixar, The Muppets or Marvel – in fact, since Disney bought those companies, we’ve had Toy Story 3, the 2011 Muppets movie and The Avengers, three fantastic films. So I have lots of faith. Sometimes that’s a good thing.

    • http://elblogderg.blogspot.com Roberto González

      The Avengers wasn’t different to the other Marvel movies and it was one of the best ones, even if I’m not such a huge fan of it as most people seem to be.

      Not sure about Pixar. It hasn’t changed much, but Lasseter has became so “Disney” now that he’s almost the one to blame about all those sequels, when he didn’t seem to like them at first.

      The Muppets…again not sure. I liked the new Muppet movie but I would like more anarchy and less nostalgia. Then again, Disney already owned The Muppets when Muppets Tonight was produced and that was full of irreverency and some adult jokes. And to be fair, most of the other muppet movies produced in Jim Henson’s life were usually more sentimental and less irreverent than the classic show.

      Finally, about the news. It’s unlikely that Disney would do any harm to Star Wars at this point and I think they are not too intrusive when managing their brands. But I find it odd that the news of them buying the franchise include the news of them releasing Episode VII, especially when Lucas apparently didn’t want to make it after all.

      • snappy

        According to Mark Hammil, Lucas told him he had plans for VII a year or two ago.

  • http://www.ryancomiskey.com Ryan

    If anybody is going to build a Death Star, it’s Disney. It’ll just have roller coasters and over priced food!

  • Bwahahaha

    IT’S A TRAP!!

    Sorry…I-I really couldn’t resist…

  • Jow