George Walton Lucas, Jr. was born on this date in 1940 in Modesto, California.  The world knows him as George Lucas, the creator of Star Wars and co-creator of Indiana Jones, and of all men the one arguably most responsible for the nascence of science fiction and fantasy in popular media.  Today he is 78 years old.

The secret to the movie business, or any business, is to get a good education in a subject besides film – whether it’s history, psychology, economics, or architecture – so you have something to make a movie about. All the skill in the world isn’t going to help you unless you have something to say.

— George Lucas

Lucas began his filmmaking career with his father’s 8mm camera, shooting little films in his back yard. He went to USC Film School first as an undergrad and then as a graduate student in the sixties, graduating in 1968.  It was there that he made the student film Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB, which became the feature film THX1138.   Surprisingly, until he directed the Star Wars prequels beginning in 1999, Lucas’ entire directorial career consisted of only three films: THX 1138, American Graffiti, and the original Star Wars.  The Star Wars franchise, however, became one of the biggest and most enduring in the history of cinema.  His production company, Lucasfilm Ltd., is one of the most successful in the industry.

Sometimes destiny chooses one man to carry the banner for an entire generation. George Lucas is one of these men.  Happy birthday, George, from all of us at May the Force be with you.

– 30 –

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