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Quite a few people took notice of George Lucas’ tone-deaf comment during a Charlie Rose interview that surfaced online Wednesday, when he jokingly compared Disney to “white slavers” and said that the company, who purchased Lucasfilm in 2012, wanted to do a “retro movie” with Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” On Thursday, the Star Wars franchise creator issued a statement apologizing for the “very inappropriate analogy” and said he was very proud of “Force Awakens” director J.J Abrams and Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy.
I want to clarify my interview on the Charlie Rose Show. It was for the Kennedy Center Honors and conducted prior to the premiere of the film. I misspoke and used a very inappropriate analogy and for that I apologize.
I have been working with Disney for 40 years and chose them as the custodians of Star Wars because of my great respect for the company and Bob Iger’s leadership. Disney is doing an incredible job of taking care of and expanding the franchise. I rarely go out with statements to clarify my feelings but I feel it is important to make it clear that I am thrilled that Disney has the franchise and is moving it in such exciting directions in film, television and the parks. Most of all I’m blown away with the record breaking blockbuster success of the new movie and am very proud of JJ and Kathy.
“Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” the first Star Wars film since Lucas sold the rights of the property to Disney, has grossed more than $1.2 billion worldwide in the first two weeks of its release. Charlie Rose’s interview with Lucas can be viewed in full below: