The key difference between the Prequels and Sequels is context. George merely recontextualised the whole story to his intended meanings and what the story meant to him with the Prequels. The Tragedy of Darth Vader. He felt it got lost at the end of Return of the Jedi. I tend to agree with him as many fans have a hard time with fully seeing Anakin and Darth Vader as the same person. The story grew and evolved from what it may have been originally planned as but many core aspects remain from very early drafts. The story took the natural progression route of telling stories as he had lived in the world he created and knew it more than when he was still developing what it could be with say the early drafts of A New Hope that had various outcomes. Some fans were upset because he didn’t “respect” what came before or added things they found unnecessary. That’s subjective and different from the storyteller in George adding to what was told originally. He just had a different point of view from fans when it came time of the Prequels. These fans were naturally upset as it felt different on the surface from the Originals but that’s the whole point. It was meant to give us Anakin’s side of the stories we are told mainly by Obi-Wan in the Originals yet also bring a brighter light to core aspects that got more attention in the Prequels. Namely symbiote relationships and the mythology with the Force.
However with the Sequels we got it’s merely a corporation hiring storytellers who reinforce what many Original Trilogy fans thought of Star Wars before the Prequels. It’s telling us things from a fan’s prospective and how they may remember it being talked about growing up but missing core contexts of the story told to them by George. It does this by mostly ignoring the Prequels except for a few superficial references and surface level observations in the Original Trilogy. Examples, not paying attention to things like Luke seeing Darth Vader as Anakin Skywalker, his father, by the time of Return of the Jedi or what Balance of the Force meant. They’re not looking at the context or rules of the saga as a whole with the Sequels but merely their idea of what Star Wars meant to them as a kid or will make back their parent company’s investment back as fast as possible. This ulimately came back to bite them as whenever you run away from your story it will eventually catch up with you. The saga to George was the story of Anakin Skywalker and his family. Some fans don’t like this but that’s the story.
Why should an artist try appealing to fans? It’s nonsensical and gets you nowhere. I say it as humbly as possible you shouldn’t bother telling a story at all if you can’t respect the whole story. The Prequels are part of the fabric of Star Wars. Some may not like it but it’s fact and reality. Finish the story and let George’s nine part saga be told. If you want to move away from the concepts of Midi-Chlorians and the Chosen One afterwards be our guest but at least let his story be told from the beginning, middle, and end as he’s the creator of the story of the Skywalker family. It may even bring understanding that he thought through things more than he’s given credit for when you see the full contexts in the complete story. Disney would then have true freedom to do anything they wanted as they wouldn’t be beholden to the rules and contexts of what came before. Sure it would be ideal to continue to respect Star Wars as a whole of what came before but if you want to appeal to a mass audience after completing his story you’d be at liberty to do so more than at any other point. You could even still have the spinoffs like Rogue One and Solo to appease fans of the Original Trilogy. The majority of fans who strictly like the Original films tend to rave about them. In particular Rogue One. Not everyone of course but that’s subjective as all art is.
I don’t understand why some fans believe they have ownership over what Star Wars is though. It’s not always about us as fans. It’s just as much about each generation that comes along and giving them a story that continues the mythos. The Sequels we ended up with fail at doing this as they’re merely giving into the Prequel backlash and not concluding the story as George planned it to be told. They’re merely playing to fan expectations and giving us what they think we want or playing to what they expect us to see by subverting expectations. This is horribly disrespectful to George and the hard work of everyone who worked on the original six films. They came so close but were a country mile at the same time from truly getting Star Wars right. Now it feels like nobody from a fan prospective or the powers that be are truly happy unless you’re a fan that consumes everything given to you or you’re merely at a place where you can pick and choose or you can simply ignore and know Star Wars isn’t for you anymore. We are what they grow beyond I suppose. I just didn’t expect it would be this soon or done through the characters I love in Luke, Leia, and Han. It would’ve given needed closure to see them grow and evolve naturally instead of staying stilted to what we knew them as before or barely being recognisable yet reconfiguring their character arc in a way that serves what came before it in the previous two films.
We all deserved better but that’s a corporation for you. The central artist or auteur is the most important part of any project like this but as long as films like Marvel and what Star Wars is becoming are successful the storyteller will be pushed out of the equation. It may not always be perfect or smooth but I’d rather have a few eye rolls in things like stepping in poodoo over a few hundred contradictions that disrespect what came before in the final trilogy of the Skywalker family saga. We must in these terms and general learn from our mistakes as our story is our takes for the generations to come. Everything has a consequence and domino effect, and that’s a lesson George Lucas taught me.
Okay. Rant Over.