Thursday, 16 November 2017
'STAR WARS' AT 40: THE TALENTS OF MARCIA LUCAS
Behind every great man there's a great woman, and back in late 1976/early 1977, that great woman to George Lucas was Marcia. And whilst George was a respected director and film editor in his own right, Marcia, very much the gregarious, artistic and spirited other side to her husband's quieter and shier persona, was as equally in-demand for her talents as film editor, most notably for Martin Scorcese. Early-on in the film's casting genesis, it was Marcia (along with casting associate Fred Roos) who gently pushed George in the direction of using the trio of Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford for the film's main leads. And when STAR WARS needed urgent post production work, Marcia was available to help him with key sequences like the finale Death Star battle, shaping it and tightening it up, as well as adding/improving little character and humorous moments that ultimately helped give the film that sustained likeable and enduring resonance.
Additionally, Marcia convinced George to kill off Obi-Wan Kenobi, so as to give the film even more emotional impact towards its last act, and, even if tearfully upset by the remarks of her closest industry friends (most vocally Brian DePalma), supported her husband when its early minus effects rough cut was torn to shreds by many of them, all fearing disaster for the pair. Alas, STAR WARS eventual and well deserved success (of which Marcia won an Oscar), and its leading to future time/personal life consuming sequels, was, sadly and ultimately, one of the key components to the breakdown of their marriage by 1983.