‘The Force’ is now strong with Disney

Joe Llorin, Features Editor

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Welcome to the year 2012, where the iPad is too big but the iPhone is too small, prompting the creation of the iPad Mini. Where Lebron James finally has himself a championship ring, where the United States are no longer in danger of “Romnesia” and where Disney now owns the rights to the “Star Wars” franchise. You read that right, folks. Your beloved movie characters like Luke Skywalker, Indiana Jones and Iron Man now share one main thing in common: they all have the same boss.

Perhaps we as fans of all that is pop culture should have seen this coming- after all, Disney does own three of the world’s most well-known names in entertainment: Pixar, ESPN and most recently Marvel Studios. Even with that being said, apparently almost everyone was caught off guard when Disney bought Lucasfilm Ltd. for $4.05 billion on Oct. 30. “Star Wars” lovers worldwide raged through Facebook statuses, Tweets and blog posts like the world hasn’t seen since the release of “The Phantom Menace” in 1999. Disney didn’t really improve their image among these hardcore fans when they announced plans for an “Episode VII” release in 2015.

Unfortunately, people in general have acquired this obtuse idea that Disney takes everything they own, slaps some Mickey Mouse ears on it and completely “kiddifies” it. While Chewbacca would look a lot cooler with Mickey Mouse ears, this idea is nothing short of blasphemy. If this were the case, we’d see Chris Berman in a colorful suit wearing a knit cap with his name sewn on it while he broadcasts “NFL Countdown” and when Earth’s Mightiest Heroes are bashing enemies’ skulls in, cotton candy and gummy bears would pour out in place of blood and saliva.

The majority of the “Star Wars” fanbase have made the same mistake of not reading the fine print and if they had done so, they would know that Disney merely owns the company- they leave control in capable hands while making all of the money- money which only funds further titles. For anyone who still has faith in George Lucas, you can rest easy- Disney enlisted Lucas as creative consultant, so we won’t be seeing any pink colored stormtroopers any time soon.

Almost every fan of Marvel and its superheroes were concerned about this for the “Avengers” film, and look how that turned out- the movie only made a few billion dollars and broke a few world records, but no big deal or anything.

On the contrary, among the cluster of people that is the “Star Wars” fan base, there are those who saw this news as beneficial- especially younger fans of the name. Fans could argue that George Lucas’s work as a director has been deteriorating in quality- cementing that statement with his release of “Red Tails” earlier this year, although longtime fans of the franchise would argue that this deterioration started with the “Star Wars” prequels, which, face it- were not nearly as bad as fanatics’ high standards make them out to be. “Revenge of the Sith” was the only “Star Wars” film ever to feature a PG-13 rating, but it still felt like something was holding the franchise back- the prequels ended up being more drama than action/sci-fi as originally intended. With George Lucas no longer serving as director, future “Star Wars” films have the potential to surpass any and all expectations, with the likes of Joss Whedon, Steven Spielberg and Matthew Vaughn showing interest in directing “Episode VII.”

Whether you love it or hate it, Disney owning “Star Wars” is only another step for the historic franchise. No matter what your opinion, remember that your love for all that is “Star Wars” is only being preserved so that one day your children and grandchildren can share that same love and joy. But for now, just sit tight, enjoy the ride and hopefully we’ll all find the droids we’re looking for at the end of this journey.