Biography of George Lucas (1944-VVVV)

Director, screenwriter and producer of American cinema, born May 14, 1944 in Modesto (California).

Very young he was attracted by comic books, television, music and photography; He spent long time watching programs - especially the drawings-which programmed by television. His parents helped him whenever they could, to go with those things which were his dream in his youth. Studies were you reluctant because they were not attractive. Lover of automobiles, with fifteen years has begun under the supervision of his father to drive - although the State law did not allow it until twenty-one years - and on the dates of graduation from Thomas Downey High School, with eighteen years, suffers a serious traffic accident which was killed.

The length of time needed to recover from the blow, made him reflect. Reading encouraged him to study seriously. Since he saw the possibility to study film at the University of the Southern California, with twenty years, was realized that he had found the place appropriate to their interests, why dedicated much time to prepare, to advance in the studies, to be able to immediately access some of the projects that were performed in the film school. His first work, Look at Life (1965), surprised everyone; It was a very original experiment, which resembled the standard model that the students of the Center were for nothing. This work was followed by others until he directed the latter in the University classroom, 1:42:08 (1966). In all of them and in any more than would do later, Lucas assumed not only management, but also the production and script, received several important awards for his work. After her graduation in August 1966, remained linked to the school for a few more years, in which arise other short films, especially the titled THX 1138: 4EB (1971) where experimentation was confirmed as a patent of Modesto Junior. His name began to sound already in film environments.

Ready to enter in the industry of cinema, and after being rejected to go to the Viet Nam war, get a first job as editor at a company of documentaries. He later obtained a scholarship in the studios of Warner Bros., where you will have the opportunity to work on the project that had in hand a young director named Francis Ford Coppola, after meeting their concerns offered the opportunity to direct the documentary on its own production, guaranteeing that after the movie it would be you his own film. It is like Lucas wheel (1968) Filmmaker, remembered as one of the emblematic titles of the time, and embarks immediately in the project to start an independent production company, to be called American Zoetrope with Coppola.

After their marriage with Marcia Lou Griffin, arises the possibility of directing his first feature film, although the difficulties in the screenplay are numerous and very tight budget. The film does not like in the first instance and takes to be released by Warner. Bids his friend Coppola received lead him to start a new path. Your first step is found in 1971 its production company, Lucasfilm Ltd., while the second was a pilgrimage to get out his American Graffiti (1973). The movie becomes reality thanks to the intervention of the Universal and his friend Coppola signed the project as a producer. The film - a youth history - suffers numerous setbacks during the filming and will have several assemblies before its final release. To the disbelief of the Universal, the film becomes one of the big hits of the 1970s, definitely opening doors from the movie industry to its director.

From this moment on, George Lucas decide to embark on what would be, in the long run, the most ambitious and final career project: of the Star Wars (Star Wars, 1977). Film penetrated in the universe of science fiction, fantasy and adventure films, agreeing to be the formula that cinema needs to open new avenues for the production. It is a fact that Stanley Kubrickfilm, 2001: an Odyssey of the space (1969) had been a major renovation and Lucas believed that their project could be viable at the time. After a laborious production, confirms the director's imagination and the application of the latest technology at that time, the response of the public came to confirm that he was right. The unusual success of the film encouraged to make the Empire strikes back (1980), film which offers directing to Irvin Kershner, who had been his teacher at school. The results are still greater.

Poster of the wars.

In the early 1980s, George Lucas was in a privileged position, and as producer - as the address had ruled out it - could face other stories that had kept at your table. So, while on the one hand it continues to work on the third installment of the series - the return of the jedi (1983)-, it decides to undertake a new project with other characters but with similar characteristics as the serial film and television, as well as adventure stories. Their creative union with Steven Spielberg comes in Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), a film that will break the lockers, and that already says a lot of this cinematographic tandem and the change that is taking place in the structures of Hollywood.

As producer Lucas will have one of the most impressive and evocative of the world film careers. His way of understanding the film introduces new ideas at the heart of the industry, controlling hand all products generated - with a new idea of marketing-, allowing more direct collaborators increase their profits with a benefit-sharing, and giving input to many who soon to strengthen his team. He knew how to be thankful also with his friend and maestro Coppola (which result in Tucker, the man and his dream, 1988) and also environmentally friendly with some of the great masters of world cinema ( Akira Kurosawa to produce his Kagemusha helps). Lucas understood after the first Galactic delivery, that its work should focus more on production and technological development that can improve the creativity in the plots of design and image of the films that would occur since the early 1980s.

For the 20th anniversary Special Edition

When approaching the twentieth anniversary of the Galactic saga, Lucas wanted to celebrate such an event in a special way. There is no doubt that in the second half of the nineties, the Lucasfilm Ltd. had the funds needed to deal with a special edition of the trilogy project. The challenge began with the restoration of the negative of the film which, although well preserved, needed an in-depth review to retrieve the image support of poor quality had deteriorated. The Industrial Light & Magic, YCM laboratory restoration advisers got optimum results. The same thing happened with the soundtrack, which in its date was stereo and in 1997 is already digital, so taking advantage of the system of the own Lucas, THX, patented in the 1980s.

Lucasfilm Ltd. has positioned itself at the forefront of technology, practically, since his driver put it to walk. Several divisions are faced with the challenges that claim to be from different sectors of the film and entertainment industry. Thus, ILM (founded in 1975) is the company that is in charge of the Visual effects industry; the THX division (founded in 1980, and was named both the title of the first movie of Lucas and the name of Tomlinson Holman, the expert hired to develop the sound of the return of the Jedi, which gave rise to the Tomlinson Holman's experiment) is focused on developing a sound system that improves the conditions of audio in movie theaters and in household products; the Skywalker Sound (founded in 1975) offers services in the field of sound not only to the world of cinema, but also other industries such as music, video and theme parks that provide the globe; the LucasArts Entertainment Company (founded in 1982) is the division which has developed numerous products in the world of the video game and interactive multimedia.

The importance of ILM

We must not forget that the efforts of George Lucas to always get the best results, has helped in large measure - and in many cases, fundamentally-, to the development of the industry of cinema in the world, but especially of American cinema. Since the creation of the Industrial Light & Magic, now exceed the hundred movies that were in need of their services, either by a few seconds of scanned images or because they wanted to create new realistic environments from simple sketches.

Resources that ILM was cementing its quality and creative contribution, are, apart from their own productions, in films such as the dragon of the Lake of fire (1981), Poltergeist (1981), Star Trek II: the wrath of Khan (1982), E.T. The extra-terrestrial (1982), Ghostbusters (1984), the young Sherlock Holmes (1985), back to the future (1985), Cocoon (1985), our wonderful allies (1987), who framed Roger Rabbit? (1988), back to the future II (1989), the Abyss (1989), the dreams of Akira Kurosawa (1989), the jungle 2: alerta roja (1990), Terminator 2: judgment (1991), Rockeeter (1991), Jurassic Park (1993), Forrest Gump (1994), the mask (1994), the flintstones (1994), Casper (1995), mission impossible (1996), Twister (1996), Dragonheart (1996), and Mars Attacks! (1996), among many others, giving you more than fifteen Oscar for best special effects.

There is no doubt that to the Lucas bet, the dependence of the technological advancements of its film industry will continue to be a fact, but it is also clear that since he made the first step, other producers - with some of the technicians who had worked for Lucas - have tried to create his own company to supply special effectsboth Visual and sound, the film industry. The debt, therefore, with Lucas will always be important.

Episodes I, II and III: complete the history

Lucas, consecrated as the director who changed the concept of cinema and became one of the greatest shows in the world, it was proposed to carry out a daunting task with which would leave closed a cycle and which had been dreaming almost thirty years: complete the Star Wars trilogy. With the delivery of the original trilogy, Lucas actually closed the narration of the story of one of the most famous characters of celluloid, the sinister Darth Vader, from his childhood until his death.

The director of Modesto could count with sufficient technology to bring his epic to the big screen as I had it in my head. Your ILM ran at full capacity for the first three episodes on the main screens around the world with the following chronology: Star Wars: episode I. The phantom menace in 1999, Star Wars: Episode II. Attack of the clones in 2002, and Star Wars: Episode III. The revenge of the Sith in 2005. With them closed a cycle started in 1977. While the story was another later trilogy, Lucas announced already, 61-year-old not be seen with strong enough to shoot it, and that I would also engage in other efforts away from science fiction.

The new (or old, depending how you look) trilogy was all a marvel of special effects and sound in which almost all of the frames were digitally retouched. While lucas shot and edited in digital format, it was forced to pass it on to celluloid so all the rooms, especially those that did not have the latest advances, could spend films. You can deal the sinister Darh Vader now in its infancy (incarnated in the young actor Jake Lloyd) and in his adolescence, youth and fullness of authority as a jedi Knight (embodied in this case in actor Hayden Christensen). Some of the biggest names of the cinema of that era, as did Alec Guinness at the time, come together in three films; Thus, names like Liam Neeson, Ewan McGregor, Natalie Portman, Christopher Lee and Samuel L. Jackson joined also the list of Galactic actors (some, like Jackson, thrilled to be able to choose laser sword). Nor should forget the non-human characters, if in the case of the robots R2D2 and C3PO (which also have a role protagonist, and the first we know even its genesis) or Jabba the Hutt already harvested a great success in the previous trilogy, in the new have been very applauded or the subject of fierce criticism. In the first case highlights the disturbing inhabitants of Kamino or sinister general Grievous; in the second, and above all, the JarJar Binks gungan. However, followers of the saga could finally enjoy one of the most anticipated moments: see fight his gun Grandmaster, the tiny and seemingly fragile jedi Yoda.

Nevertheless, and despite the criticisms of own fans of the saga, Lucas put in screens a, in the words of Time magazine, "show entertaining, with vigour and seriousness, a [trilogy] that retrieves and maintains film strength that dreamed in ancient times". He was thus responsible for a phenomenon that has transcended the film concept, and that has left very high slat of science fiction on the big screen.

The success at the box office of all films of the trilogy (and which reap the former reissue), must also necessarily be added the huge benefits that the merchandise of the series produced, as well as the market of video (especially the digital DVD format) and other related products, including the booming video game market.


As a director

Short films

1965: Look at Life; The Emperor. 1966: Herbie (code); 1.42.08 1967: THX 1138:4eb (Electronic Labyrinth); Anyone Lived in a Pretty How Town; 6.18.67 1968: Filmmaker.

Feature films

1971: THX 1138. 1973: American Graffiti. 1977: Star Wars. 1999: Star Wars: episode I. Fantasma.2002 the menace: Star Wars: Episode II. The attack of the clones.2005: Star Wars: Episode III. The revenge of the Sith.

As a producer

1973: American Graffiti. 1977: Star Wars. 1979: more American Graffiti. 1980: The Empire strikes back. 1981: Raiders of the Ark lost. 1983: Return of the jedi. 1984: Indiana Jones and the Temple of doom. 1985: Mishima; Latino.1986: Inside the maze; Howard, a new hero; Captain Eo. 1988: Willow; Tucker, the man and his dream. 1989: Indiana Jones and the last crusade. 1997: Re-release of the star wars, the Empire strikes back and return of the jedi. 1999: Star Wars: episode I. Fantasma.2002 the menace: Star Wars: Episode II. The attack of the clones.2005: Star Wars: Episode III. The revenge of the Sith.

Series and films for television

1984: The EWOK Adventure: Caravan of Courage. 1985: Ewoks and Droids Adventure Hour; Ewoks: the Battle for Endor. 1986: The Great Heep; Ewoks.1990: Maniac Mansion. 1991: The adventures of young Indiana Jones. 1994: Radioland Murders.


CHAMPLIN, Charles: George Lucas: The Creative Impulse. New York. Harry N. Abrams Inc. Publishers. 1992.

CULHANE, John: Special Effects in the Movies. New York. Ballantine. 1981.

FINCH, Christopher: Special Effects: Creating Movie Magic. New York. Abbeville Press. 1984.

MARTERS WATSON, Diane and others: the star wars. Barcelona. Current editions. 1977 (book of the shooting).

POLLOCK, Dale: Skywalking: The Life and Films of George Lucas. New York. Harmony Books. 1983.

SANSWEET, Stephen J.: Star Wars. From Concept to Screen to Collectible. San Francisco. Chronicle Books. 1992

SMITH, Thomas G.: Industrial Light & Magic: The Art of Special Effects. London. Virgin Publishing. 1986.

URRERO, Guzmán: Cinefectos. Enhancements and shadows. Barcelona. Royal Books. 1995.

VELAYOS, Teresa L.: George Lucas. The power of the force. Barcelona. Royal Books. 1995.