George Lucas to Receive AFI Life Achievement Award

Brian in Mesa

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Lucas to Receive AFI Life Achievement Award
Source: American Film Institute
October 16, 2004


George Lucas has been selected by the American Film Institute's (AFI) Board of Trustees to receive the 33rd AFI Life Achievement Award, the highest honor for a career in film, it was announced today by Sir Howard Stringer, chair of the AFI Board of Trustees.

The award will be presented to Lucas at a gala tribute in Los Angeles in June 2005.

"I've been very fortunate to have had a long career doing what I love to do, and being recognized by AFI for it is really an honor," Lucas said. "I'm proud to be counted among such an extraordinary group of people whose lives are dedicated to the art of making movies."

"George Lucas is a master storyteller, but he is first and foremost a moving image pioneer," said Stringer. "He has advanced the art of the moving image like few others, and in the process has inspired a new generation of filmmakers around the world. AFI is proud to present him with its Life Achievement Award."

USA Network will broadcast the 33rd AFI Life Achievement Award tribute in June 2005. Bob Gazzale, who served as executive producer and writer of AFI's Tributes to Meryl Streep and Robert De Niro, will continue in these roles.

Born and reared in Modesto, California, George Lucas first attracted attention for his filmmaking abilities as a student at the University of Southern California, when his short film, Electronic Labyrinth THX 1138 4EB, won the top award at the National Student Film Festival.

In 1971, using San Francisco production studio American Zoetrope and long-time friend Francis Ford Coppola as executive producer, Lucas transformed the short film into his first feature, the stunningly prescient THX 1138.

His follow-up, the low-budget American Graffiti (1973), became the most successful film of its time. But it was Star Wars(1977), Lucas' third film, that changed everything. A deceptively simple morality tale of good versus evil told across a fantastic landscape of exotic planets and bizarre creatures, Star Wars became an international phenomenon. Refusing to accept the limitations of filmmaking at the time, Lucas created his own visual effects company, Industrial Light & Magic, to make his vision a reality.

Lucas has been storywriter and executive producer of a series of box-office hits beginning in the 1980s, starting with the continuation of the "Star Wars" saga, "The Empire Strikes Back" in 1980 and "Return of the Jedi" in 1983. In 1981, he created the classic adventurer "Indiana Jones," star of three classic box-office hits as well as a television series, The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, which won 12 Emmy Awards.

Throughout the 1980s, Lucas helped bring to the screen an array of films as diverse as Willow; Tucker: The Man and His Dream; and Mishima, and helped create unforgettable Disney theme park attractions. As chairman of Lucasfilm Ltd., Lucas oversaw its growth into all facets of filmmaking and entertainment. ILM has delivered revolutionary visual effects for scores of films and blazed new trails into the world of digital imagery. The computer graphic research division of Lucasfilm was spun-off in 1986 and became Pixar Animation Studios.

Skywalker Sound has applied its own perfection and devotion to the crafting of a film's soundtrack and post-production editing. Lucasfilm has been a post-production innovator, with such pioneering achievements as non-linear video editing systems that became the basis of the standard editing platforms used in film and television today.

Lucasfilm also includes LucasArts, a leading developer of home computer and consolebased entertainment, and Lucas Licensing, which have expanded the "Star Wars" and "Indiana Jones" brands into best-selling novels, toys and merchandise.

Lucas returned to directing in 1999 with Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace. Three years later,Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones, was the first major live-action movie to be shot entirely digitally. Lucas is currently in post-production on the third and final "Star Wars" film, "Revenge of the Sith," scheduled to be released May 19, 2005.

:jedi:
 
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Brian in Mesa

Brian in Mesa

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Lucas: Man of the gala
By William Keck, USA TODAY

HOLLYWOOD —
A chorus line of dancing Stormtroopers kicked up their heels like Rockettes Thursday night at the American Film Institute's 33rd Life Achievement Awards gala saluting Star Wars creator George Lucas (airing June 20 on the USA Network, 9 p.m. ET/PT).

William Shatner, who led the splashy musical salute at the Kodak Theatre, joked, "Star Trek changed everything, and aren't these conventions wonderful?"

Among the celebrities in attendance at the star-studded performance were Warren Beatty, Annette Bening, Richard Dreyfuss, Billy Dee Williams, Chewbacca and Hugh Hefner, who escorted a posse of 10 playmates,, including one with her hair done up in Princess Leia buns.

The most emotional moment of the evening came when original Star Wars players Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Chewy, C-3PO and R2-D2, backed by composer John Williams' original score, performed a re-creation of the closing medal ceremony scene from Episode IV: A New Hope.

A muffled gasp was heard during a film-clip salute to Lucas featuring King Kong director Peter Jackson, who has shed not only his scraggly beard but also 100 pounds.

Earlier during dinner, Fisher approached Jimmy Smits to introduce herself as his "daughter," Princess Leia. (In the latest Star Wars installment, Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, Smits' character, Senator Bail Organa, adopts baby Leia.)

"Jimmy's a lot better looking than any of the stepfathers I ever had," cracked Fisher, whose mother, Debbie Reynolds, married and divorced three times.

Added Hamill: "Carrie and I are still trying to figure out how such good-looking parents as Hayden Christensen and Natalie Portman ended up with us."

Fisher then chatted up her on-screen Star Wars love, Ford, and his real-life lady, Calista Flockhart, who were seated at Lucas' table with Steven Spielberg, Robert Duvall and Lucas' three adopted children, Amanda, 24, Katie, 17, and Jett, 12.

Ford was approached by Daniel Logan, 18, who played young Boba Fett in Episode II: Attack of the Clones. Lucas said Logan's character may be included in his live-action Star Wars TV series, which is in the works.

Spielberg said writer Jeff Nathanson (Speed 2, Rush Hour 2 and 3) is readying a script for Indiana Jones 4 by summer's end. Asked whether Flockhart would play Indy's new leading lady, Ford said, "She would of course make her own decision."

Flockhart said she's up for a 2006 adventure. "Oh, yes," she said. "If I could kick his (butt), absolutely!"

:jedi:
 

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Chaplin

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A couple things:

1) Lifetime Achievement for George Lucas? Granted, his technological advancements have been nothing short of amazing, but his filmmaking skills leave a lot to be desired. Perhaps they should have waited until he moved on to whatever it is he's doing next--to see how he handles something NOT Star Wars for a change.

2) There has got to be a picture of Peter Jackson without his beard and thin on the Internet SOMEWHERE.

3) Great little snippet about Leia and Luke being the kids of Hayden Christensen and Natalie Portman.
 

Brian

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Who the heck is George Lucas?

Is that the guy who makes the movies about space people and stuff?

(sorry BIM)

:D
 
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