'Star Wars Episode 7' Coming in 2015; Walt Disney Buys Lucasfilm for $4 Billion!

George Lucas will be passing the torch to new filmmakers for the next installment in his blockbuster franchise.
Star Wars Episode 7 coming in 2015! Disney buys Lucasfilm for $4.5 billion
Star Wars Episode 7 coming in 2015! Disney buys Lucasfilm for $4.5 billion
The Walt Disney Company announced today it is purchasing LucasFilm for $4.05 billion, and that they are developing Star Wars 7 for release in 2015! George Lucas will not direct, although it is not known yet who will take over at the helm. Take a look at the full press release below.

Continuing its strategy of delivering exceptional creative content to audiences around the world, The Walt Disney Company 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. Here is what The Walt Disney Company chairman Robert G. Iger had to say.

"Lucasfilm reflects the extraordinary passion, vision, and storytelling of its founder, George Lucas. 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."


Here's what George Lucas had to say about the massive deal.

"For the past 35 years, one of my greatest pleasures has been to see Star Wars passed from one generation to the next. 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.

Star Wars: Episode VII comes to theaters December 18th, 2015 and stars Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Billy Dee Williams, Anthony Daniels. The film is directed by J.J. Abrams.



Sources: The Walt Disney Company

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Comments (112)

  1. Bawnian©-Dexeus

    @superman81 Nah. If I had the kind of money they have, I'd be buying business I like and know are profitable too. I don't hate Disney. Despite some flaws and screw ups, I like them. Sometimes, they just come off a little arrogant, more than they should at times, and other stuff. Nothing I can do, so f*ck it. They wanna turn into a monopoly, then go right ahead

    1 year agoby @bawnian-dexeusFlag

  2. Superman81

    @bawnian-dexeus So Disney should stop buying?

    1 year agoby @superman81Flag

  3. Bawnian©-Dexeus

    @superman81 yeah yeah yeah. This whole "taking over the world" for Disney is getting old

    1 year agoby @bawnian-dexeusFlag

  4. Superman81

    @bawnian-dexeus Disney is looking to take over the world. If they can make great products out of what they are buying then I say go for it.

    1 year agoby @superman81Flag

  5. Nicholaus XX

    @bawnian-dexeus -- Is it Christmas already?

    1 year agoby @XxNickTheFilmCriticXxFlag

  6. the Narrator

    Damn, @bawnian-dexeus... If anything, I'd be much more comfortable with Star Wars and Hasbro being owned by Touchstone (which is under Disney, but allowed more leeway). But in reality, I can't bring myself to care about any of Hasbro's properties at the moment, and there's nothing I can do about Star Wars so I guess Disney is as good a choice as Dreamworks or Paramount.

    1 year agoby @narratorFlag

  7. John M

    @bawnian-dexeus: Doesn't Hasbro have the Merchandizing rights to the Star Wars toys? In that they make the toys along with the Transformers toy line. I can understand why Disney would want to buy them along with owning GI.JOE this would be another great move for them.

    1 year agoby @john-mFlag

  8. Bane5000

    @bawnian-dexeus...Heard about that, that would be kool, they would be handling the Tranformers than for that matter

    1 year agoby @bane5000Flag

  9. Bawnian©-Dexeus

    @john-m@felipe-11@jasonkat@superman81@corey@bane5000@narrator@ROFLitschristian@redcameraman@ghostman@fanboy@XxNickTheFilmCriticXx@mcleve02@brady1138

    Disney isn't done shelling out another 4 billion dollars. It seems that a rumor has surfaced that Hasbro is their next purchase. Thoughts?

    1 year agoby @bawnian-dexeusFlag

  10. Ben123456789

    i'm sure this movie is going to be marvelous the last ending in episode 6 they celebrated at the eworks jungle but luke didn't blow up the deth star this time like he did to the last deth star in a new hope i can't wait till it comes out in 2015 but the sad part is i'm going to be a teenager and i probabably won't like starwars any more ill probabably like stuff like maths and high school work.

    1 year agoby @ben123456789Flag

  11. MovieManiac

    @XxNickTheFilmCriticXx - Some isn't that bad. I'll give them like 12% credit.

    1 year agoby @moviemaniac66Flag

  12. Nicholaus XX

    @moviemaniac66 -- Some? This is what the world has come to!

    1 year agoby @XxNickTheFilmCriticXxFlag

  13. MovieManiac

    @XxNickTheFilmCriticXx - They get some credit.

    1 year agoby @moviemaniac66Flag

  14. Zak Lee Ferguson

    Okay that makes sense what Lucas has said and thats very grand of him to pass on his creation to very mesmeric filmmakers that have arised- Rupert Wyatt anyone! but still kinda semi pisssed off about this- hes got bored so hes passing it off for billions!

    1 year agoby @Zak-Lee-FergusonFlag

  15. Bawnian©-Dexeus

    @rudy Depends. If they were to buy DC comics then I guess you could call it a monopoly

    1 year agoby @bawnian-dexeusFlag

  16. SherlockHolmes2009

    Cant believe it

    1 year agoby @SherlockHolmes2009Flag

  17. Rudy

    KOTOR movie goddammit.

    1 year agoby @rudyFlag

  18. Rudy

    Man Disney is buying everything, almost like a....monopoly.....isnt that illegal?

    1 year agoby @rudyFlag

  19. Zack0Lantern

    I loved where the Star Wars franchise was at. 6 movies, 2 cartoons about the same war, and some pretty kewl video games. But now Disney has their hands on it all and it will run it into the ground further with even more movies, tv shows, and video games. Even making Princess Leia a Disney princess. Come on. It's just another keg that Disney plans to tap until the very last drop.

    1 year agoby @Zack0LanternFlag

  20. John M

    @bawnian-dexeus: I think it's pretty clear what I'm saying about the obsessive fanboys of Star Wars. I even reread it and think it's obvious what I'm saying.

    1 year agoby @john-mFlag

  21. Bawnian©-Dexeus

    @john-m Barely understood you

    1 year agoby @bawnian-dexeusFlag

  22. John M

    @2movieguys: Please a sell out he created and owed Star Wars. I love the Star Wars films and universe but you fan boys who think the original films who perfect or you so how own Star Wars need to get over them selves. Georgie Lucas is a great idea's man, writer and business man who is getting old and wants to look out for the legacy and future legacy of the company and franchise.

    1 year agoby @john-mFlag

  23. phatalphd

    I think as an avid Star Wars Fan...this is nothing but great news. All it means is more SW content...the cartoon on Disney XD is great! so I'm not really worried. Plus they own marvel, so disney pretty much gots my whole childhood on lock.

    1 year agoby @phatalphdFlag

  24. THE JOKER

    Or brilliant... which ever... not like he was taking the franchise anywhere by himself anymore... I guess you think Marvel are sell outs too then?

    1 year agoby @mcleve02Flag

  25. CelluloidDreams

    George Lucas...TWO WORDS: SELL OUT!!!!

    1 year agoby @2movieguysFlag

  26. THE JOKER

    @filmboof Just looks at what they have done for Marvel... A lot of people were very skeptical when they took them over, and they are larger than ever... But the original series is too amazing in it's own being to ever be tarnished by whatever it is anyone else could possibly do with it

    1 year agoby @mcleve02Flag

  27. Film Boof

    This is the biggest shock about anything related to movies since Lucas made more changes to the original trilogy for the blu-ray release. I'm beginning to question his faith in a company such as Disney for carrying on his legacy. If there's a franchise that simply can't be screwed up, it's this one. I hope to God they do this right, and not put a dent in millions of childhoods.

    1 year agoby @filmboofFlag

  28. THE JOKER

    I would say the three people I would love to see would be Zemeskis, JJ Abrams or Joss Whedon... But this is awesome news to me!

    1 year agoby @mcleve02Flag