Watching the lost behind the scenes video in the preservation forum, I couldn’t help but notice there’s a much bigger emphasis on Irvin Kershner - it seems almost like it’s his movie. There’s a lot of footage of him talking to each of the actors and doing everything himself. He obviously knew exactly what he was doing.
Washington, D.C.: With all of the questions about Lucas’s own lack of directing talent in comparison to the many areas in which he is quite talented, I was curious about your impression of how genuine directors feel about working with him. We all know that Lucas and Spielberg are (publicly at least) very good friends. What about others who have worked on movies that Lucas played a large creative/production role in? Kershner is the most obvious example, but not the only one.
Dale Pollock: Both Kershner and Marquand resented Lucas’ interference with their methods, and Lucas resented their resentment. Kershner still feels he directed the best STAR WARS film with EMPIRE, and personally, I agree with him. I also think very few established directors would have wanted to direct EPSIDOES I, II or III, given Lucas’ reputation for creative control of this franchise.
New York, N.Y.: Hello. Same NYC poster as before, just wanted to ask a followup:
How/when did Lucas come to believe that Kershner ruined Empire? I ask because (1) a lot of people (me included) believe it’s the best one, and (2) even after that, he still had someone else direct Jedi. (Thanks for taking questions, by the way. Very interesting chat!)
Dale Pollock: Glad you’re enjoying this chat. Kershner said he would never work with Lucas again after his EMPIRE experience, and I think Lucas felt the same way. He felt Kershner went too emotional in EMPIRE, and put too much emphasis on Vader’s struggle, and not enough on Luke’s. It just wasn’t the movie he would have made (I think many of us are glad he didn’t make it!)
Is Lucas perhaps jealous that Kershner made a better film? Do we know anything else about this?