Making a film is hard. Making a Star Wars film is a couple of levels beyond that because you have to juggle the ridiculous fan expectations with all the established universe rules. It’s a tough nut to crack but hearing Lucasfilm head honcho Kathleen Kennedy whinge about the creative process behind every post-George Lucas Star Wars film is pretty unseemly.
In an interview with Rolling Stone about Rise of Skywalker and the future of the franchise, Kennedy says every Star Wars film is hard to make and the process is especially difficult because unlike the likes of, say, Marvel, they don’t have a pile of comics and novels to adapt and must come up with everything from scratch.
“Every one of these movies is a particularly hard nut to crack. There’s no source material. We don’t have comic books. We don’t have 800-page novels. We don’t have anything other than passionate storytellers who get together and talk about what the next iteration might be. We go through a really normal development process that everybody else does.”
Uh huh. Okay then. This seems like an appropriate time to whip out an oldie but a goodie:
If we read between the lines of Kathleen Kennedy’s quote, she’s essentially saying it’s really hard to create something when someone else hasn’t already created it for them.
Pretty weird for her to drop that nugget considering how George Lucas created Star Wars from scratch, not to mention all the great original films and franchises that were all willed into existence from nothing over the years. It’s almost like making high quality, original work is a tough job.
And besides, not every franchise can follow Marvel’s “adapt decades worth of comics for the big screen” approach.
But perhaps the most mindboggling part of Kathleen Kennedy’s quote is the “We don’t have comic books” and “800-page novels” part.
Hate to break it to you like this, Kathleen, but you actually have a big pile of source material under the “Extended Universe” label. There’s literally decades of Star Wars comics and novels in this “Extended Universe” and just because Disney declared it to be non-canon with the films doesn’t mean the material isn’t rich with ideas.
What makes this whole thing even more hilarious is how The Mandalorian is clearly taking inspiration from “Extended Universe” material, which shows that either the Star Wars brain trust don’t know their intellectual property or are getting their PR messaging wrong (unlike, say, Marvel).
In their defence though, whoever came up with Baby Yoda is a genius and deserves all the creativity awards.
Perhaps it’s a good thing that the next Star Wars film to come out after Rise of Skywalker isn’t until 2022. That’ll give Kathleen Kennedy and the rest of the brain trust to bank a heap of new and original ideas, or to pore over all the “Extended Universe” material for cues.