The launch of Star Wars in 1977 turned into the entertainment industry in its head. This was a film that broke through box office records, but it fundamentally altered the way the film industry functioned. For starters, it altered how films were created. Most importantly, Star Wars was fun to experience, so great effort was put into developing new ideas and methods to create films more enjoyable and easily engaging. Star Wars also altered the way film was sold. Merchandising turned into a valuable method by which studios would get back their large investments for more costly pictures. With television specials, promotional runs, product tie-ins, and finally home video releases, even Star Wars found a means to reach out to its fans in a means that had never been achieved before.
This is a concise look at a few of the films which attained these classes and took them. In one way or another they had been motivated by not just Star Wars itself, however, the achievement which Star Wars seen in and out of theatres. Many of them were made by filmmakers who realized the genius of George Lucas’ strategy, and wished to perform something like this. Others took advantage of the situation in the wake of Star Wars’ fame to catch some of the magic on their own. Others were made later, much less a direct outcome of Star Wars, but playing off of its entrenchment in popular culture during the past couple of decades.
Taking Advantage of Science Fiction’s New Popularity
Ahead of Star Wars, science fiction was a risky genre to get a large budget movie. From the 70’s, the Hollywood New Wave had pushed popular film past escapist narratives to a more realistic and purposeful. Science fiction, that had traditionally been propounded in nature, seen little success in the box office. It did not help that crowds connotations of science fiction in the time were of cheesy 50’s B-movies and dull cautionary stories such as 2001: A Space Odyssey. that changed. Borrowing the blockbuster strategy of Jaws, Star Wars found excitement in a genre which Hollywood had all but forgotten about. Lucas’ usage of the “dirty space” ideology created science fiction more relatable, and seem (at least visually) more in line with these kinds of gritty, and shadowy films of the age.
After Star Wars turned into a major hit, studios scrambled to try and take advantage of viewers’ recently found thirst for daring science fiction. At first, we saw the launch of non invasive rip offs, for example Starcrash, also Battle Beyond the Stars (which really “borrowed” footage from Star Wars). Afterwards, we watched more inventive and completely recognized science fiction films coming from rival studios. Disney may now own Star Wars, but back then they wanted a bit of the pie too. Their film, 1979’s The Dark Hole, strove to take the company’s family-friendly adventures into new territory: outer space. 20th Century Fox was searching for a science fiction movie in his own, and jumped to the opportunity to make Alien once the studio saw just how profitable Star Wars became. The idea of Alien was a work in progress for many decades, but it had been the inspiration which director Ridley Scott obtained from watching Star Wars that made Fox consent to start production.
Star Wars is even responsible for beginning the film franchise of what we believe its main competition. For years after the first series went off the air, Star Trek tried to start a revival. At first, the thought was to make a new television series and strategies moved forward for Star Trek Phase II in the mid 70’s. Paramount watched the achievement of Star Wars, and at first they thought it had been a fluke. When Close Encounters of the Third Kind also turned into a smash hit too, they abruptly cancelled the new television show before production started and switched to a feature film, what could eventually become Star Trek: The Motion Picture. Lately, a similar series of events unfolded at Universal Studios. NBC was developing a new Buck Rogers television show (ironically Star Wars was greatly affected by the first Buck Rogers serials). When Star Wars became a hit, and the studio changed the series’ pilot into a feature film and introduced it in theatres to try to capitalize on the brand new found appeal of science fiction.
Taking Advantage of Star Wars’ Mass Appeal
The large effect that Star Wars had on popular culture could be seen in the way which not merely did it strain imitators who wanted to come across exactly the same sort of succeeding, but in addition, it gave way to imitators who wanted to make fun of it. Spaceballs is your ideal representation of a film that was created chiefly to make pleasure of Star Wars, nevertheless, it creates its appearance here on as a rendering of a slew of parodies which were created after 1977. Starting with the short film/trailer Hardware Wars, parodies started showing up everywhere. From children’s TV shows such as Muppet Babies, to sitcoms such as That 70’s Show, and also comedy programs like Family Guy and Robot Chicken, Star Wars parody specials were shown to be entertaining and popular.
Like the films that strove to mimic Star Wars in order take advantage of that film’s fame, the movie/TV parodies owed their opportunity to the widespread appeal of Star Wars. After all, parodies are just effective if the audience can comprehend the goal of the jokes/exaggerations, and luckily everyone knew about Star Wars. In earlier times parodies had always been a hit or miss affair as it was hard to find a source material which had widespread appeal.
Star Wars altered all that. No film has had as much effect over multiple generations and multiple age groups such as Star Wars. Individuals who saw the first trilogy in theatres became the first avid fans, while their kids saw Star Wars on VHS/DVD or else in theatres with the prequels or re-releases. Following Star Wars was released, children had Star Wars video gamestoys and toys growing up. That’s exactly why we’ve seen more Star Wars parodies during the past ten years or so than previously – it’s arguably more popular and recognized than any previous time ever. Star Wars is so ingrained into civilization that we almost take it for granted.
Filmmakers Who Were Inspired by George Lucas’ Filmmaking
While studio executives might have been seeing dollar signs when they understood the impact of Star Wars, potential film makers and storytellers saw something different. To them, Star Wars proved to be a fresh spin on science fiction (even though it was not all-new). Lucas’ more enthusiastic, daring, and inviting techniques made a film that literally blew audiences away. That impact adhered with a number of prospective filmmakers who wanted to achieve exactly the same thing.
Roland Emmerich is one film director who had been heavily affected by Star Wars. After seeing the film, he had been motivated to become a manager. Science fiction could become the genre he was most interested in, and the reach of Star Wars motivated him to make the huge films that he is famous for. The serial-like narratives in Star Wars influenced him to have multiple personalities with intersecting storylines within his films. Other obvious effects include the mixing of the supernatural with science (most of the films), using special effects to ramp up tension, and also the dogfight scenes in the Freedom Day films in addition to Moon 44.
Another thriving manager who had been heavily affected by Star Wars was Christopher Nolan. Nolan was a Star Wars fan from the very beginning. In a young age, Nolan had been interested in films and if he saw Star Wars in the age of 7 it left a enormous impression. While Nolan has just made one science fiction movie up to now, many of the films integrate notions from Star Wars. Consider his Batman trilogy, together with the first film being an introduction/origin, the second being harder, and then the third that completes the narrative arc. In the The Prestige and Inception, Nolan takes his viewers on a trip into the unreal, and he also says that from Star Warso he noticed the value of a director’s task to be able to convincingly pull this off.
Ultimately, we have J.J. Abrams. Abrams had always been interested in Star Wars (you can find easter eggs in virtually all of his films), and he even made to direct you (and will get to lead another!) . Abrams asserts that Star Wars was the first film that really resonated with him, and he never forgot that sense. The film also spoke to him about the forces of good versus evil. He appreciated that the inclusion of humor into the activity, and used that as a template for his Star Trek reboot. On the other hand, the struggles and emotional struggles of Luke Skywalker isn’t unlike lots of the protagonists in Abram’s films, which often handle the death of a parent or loved one (Super 8, Star Trek Into Darkness). Abrams also appreciated the use of the journey as well as the love triangle. These are tired and accurate storytelling elements, but Star Wars utilized those components in a newly compelling way. As such, Abrams uses the two of these tactics in some of the television shows (Lost, Felicity) and films he directs.
Jumping about the Blockbuster Bandwagon
In the end, there are a range of films which may not have been related to Star Wars in terms of topics, subject, or genre, but nonetheless would not have existed without Star Wars’ achievement. Together with Jaws of two years before, Star Wars essentially created the summer blockbuster. Even though large, expensive films are produced since almost the beginning of the 20th century, Jaws and Star Wars made a phenomenon that resulted in more simultaneous screenings than previously. This turned into a yearly competition, where studios tried to attract as many theater goers as possible during the summer months. To do this, they embraced films that were more easy to watch and revel in. Film invention shifted towards facets which would allow it to obtain a bigger audience. This included improving special effects and investing in film production and advertising.
Immediately, this new strategy to movemaking resulted in films including Grease and Superman. Star Wars also altered the way that studios approached sequels. In the past, when a film proved popular with viewers and was successful at the box office, a sequel can be considered in certain circumstances. Studios would consider making a sequel perhaps not always to repeat the success of the first film, but to take advantage of audience excitement. Sequels tended to get smaller budgets compared to the first films and the filmmakers behind the first film scarcely returned for the follow up. Examples of this happening can be observed at the Superman films or original Planet of the Apes. Following Star Wars, studios recognized that in order to keep crowds coming back, they needed to outdo themselves. Production costs typically increase with every sequel, that has resulted in the formation of the modern film franchise. Star Trek, Back to the Future, and Indiana Jones were the earliest modern film franchises in the mold of Star Wars.
In terms of special effects, Star Wars ignited a revolution which would fundamentally alter the business. When Star Wars premiered in 1977, hardly any progress was made to special effects in film as the 1950’s. George Lucas wanted Star Wars to check unlike any picture people had ever noticed before, but he needed to achieve this on a small budget. He brought together several specialists, engineers, engineers and school students to make what could eventually become Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) to manage the special consequences for his films. ILM would finally create computer generated special effects, that would go on to become important pieces of prospective films such as Super Park, the Harry Potter films, the Terminator films, and Marvel’s movie world. In the computers division of ILM, a movie section was developed, that was finally spun off and sold to Steve Jobs. That spun off images.