George Lucas sells Lucasfilm (and thus Star Wars) to Disney

I don’t often blog about movie news here at FMR.

But this is enormous news, and bears discussion. I feel as though I need to say something. This is an unimaginable story. Seriously… could anyone have imagined this prior to today?

George Lucas has sold Lucasfilm to the Disney for $4.05 billion. Disney has already announced their intention for a new Star Wars film (Episode VII) in 2015, and a new movie every two to three years after that.

I’ve been having trouble concentrating on anything else since I heard this news… I had to put something up right away, so that anyone who wanted to could discuss.

Click through to read my thoughts and leave yours!

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The Top Ten Pixar Movies

With the release of “Brave” this last weekend, Pixar Animation Studios has now released 13 animated films, and each of them have opened at #1 at the box office. A full six of them – almost half of their releases – have won the Academy Award for Best animated Feature, a feat that’s EXTRA impressive considering that 3 of the 13 were released prior to the category being added to the Oscars.

With a pedigree like that, there’s plenty of quality films to round out a top ten list. In fact, almost all of them would be worthy of inclusion. Let’s take a look at how the rankings shake out though shall, we? Click “Continue Reading” to check out my list of the Top Ten Pixar Movies.

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Now Showing on Cable: “Winnie the Pooh”

Making its debut this weekend on Starz was last year’s “Winnie the Pooh” from Walt Disney studios.

It’s traditionally animated and features all the classic A.A. Milne characters that inhabit the Hundred Acre Wood. Disney has brought them to the screen many times over the years, but in this particular installment, Disney released the picture with surprisingly little fanfare. I barely even realized it had come and gone. Possibly because they released it on the same weekend as “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2″.

Frankly, it made me wonder if Disney was “dumping it”.

If they were, there was certainly no reason to, as “Winnie the Pooh” is wonderfully crafted animated movie, worthy of a place in the Disney heritage.

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Movies That Everyone Should See: “Up”

In 2008 Pixar Animation Studios released “WALL•E”, an animated movie that defied genre expectations. The film opens with a long chapter where the lead character is by himself, and throughout the movie, he and his romantic partner have limited verbal communication. It was a bold play, but done so well that audiences and critics responded overwhelmingly. “WALL•E” was an enormous success financially, scored 96% on Rotten Tomatoes, and won the Oscar for best animated film. It is now one of the highest rated animated films in IMDb’s top 250.

But the main thing was that it was so unique, it was a such an original effort… more than Pixar’s prior exceptional offerings, even.

So when “Up” was released the next year, the question on everybody’s mnd was, “Could Pixar do it again?”

The answer?

Yes. Yes they could.

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John Carter

Disney’s “John Carter” is a maddeningly inconsistent movie.

At times it’s adventurous, imaginative, and spectacular to watch. At others, it’s ponderous, clumsy, and even occasionally silly. For every moment of awe that is created by its lavish special effects, there’s an offset by a line of terrible dialogue. For every moment where the Martian culture and creatures make you think “Oh, that’s kind of cool”, there’s and offsetting moment that makes you go “Tsch… Come on…”

It’s certainly not a bad ticket purchase, but it’s a long way from living up to its potential.

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Now showing on cable: “Tangled”

Premiering on Starz this weekend was one of Disney’s most recent animated offerings, 2010’s “Tangled”.

“Tangled” is Disney’s take on the classic fairytale Rapunzel. In this recounting, Rapunzel’s mother, a Queen, ingests a medicine made from a magical flower while she is with child. Rapunzel is born a Princess with magical hair.

However, an evil old woman had been using the magic of the flower to keep herself eternally young. Soon after Rapunzel is born, the woman kidnaps her in order to gain the youthful benefits of her magic hair. She raises Rapunzel as her own child, locked away in a hidden tower.

Rapunzel knows nothing of the outside world, nor her true parentage.

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Movies That Everyone Should See: “Beauty and the Beast”

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Tale as old as time…

Or 1991, at least.

In the early 1990s, Walt Disney Animated Features was in the midst of a renaissance. “The Little Mermaid”, “Beauty and the Beast”, “Aladdin”, and “The Lion King” were all released within a five year span.

“Beauty and the Beast” was the most successful animated film in Disney history at the time of its release. It was the first animated feature film to utilize computer animation. It was the first animated picture in U.S. box office history to gross more than one hundred million dollars, and the first animated film to be nominated for Best Picture.

It is truly one of the greatest animated motion pictures of all time.

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