German friends and fans: the latest issue of the German pop culture magazine Geek! features not only a terrific photo of Mark Hamill on the cover and lots of cool articles on All Things The Last Jedi, but you’ll also get a three-page interview with me talking about George Lucas and the cultural significance of Star Wars.
For those of you who won’t be getting to Germany any time soon — and who may not understand German — journalist Christian Endres, who conducted the interview, was kind enough to permit me to post our conversation in its entirety — and in English — here on the blog.
Hello Brian! Have you ever met a person who didn’t know Star Wars?
I don’t know that I’ve met anyone who doesn’t know what Star Wars is, but I have met several people who’ve never seen it. These generally tend to be people who were in their 30s when the movie first came out in 1977, didn’t get swept up in the zeitgeist, and then just never got around to seeing it. But Star Wars still creeps into their references, whether they know it or not – just like people say, “Rosebud” without ever seeing Citizen Kane, these folks will still say things like, “There is no try,” or “May the Force be with you.” Star Wars is truly in us all.
Would you call Star Wars the greatest myth of our age? And does this make George Lucas the greatest fairy-tale-storyteller of modern time?
I think it’s definitely right up there, though it’s in good company with things like Lord of the Rings and perhaps Star Trek and the DC Comic/Marvel universe. These are all mythologies with gigantic canvases, enormous numbers of characters, and sprawling story arcs. George Lucas—consistent with his driving need to control his creative destiny—is the one who single-handedly created, scripted, wrote the story, or set the ground rules of the Star Wars mythology. If that doesn’t make him singlehandedly the greatest mythmaker of all time, he’s definitely in the running. Continue reading