Sunday on ProSieben The grand finale to the second most successful film series of all time — a unique film

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The twelve «Star Wars» movies have grossed $10.3 billion worldwide. While that’s not even half of what the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies have made, a whopping 28 of these superhero movies have been released to date (and on average per movie, Star Wars is just behind).

Created by George Lucas, the franchise has enjoyed near-unprecedented success and is the second-highest-grossing film series of all time, even if only the box office revenue of the nine «episodes» about the Skywalker family is taken into account. Star Wars 9: The Rise of Skywalker brought that tale to a close (other Star Wars movies are yet to come). ProSieben will show the film on Sunday, March 27, from 8:15 p.m. in the free TV premiere.

No matter how you feel about it, «The Rise of Skywalker» is a unique finale

It may be controversial among fans and the public how well the conclusion of the so-called Skywalker saga in «Star Wars 9» succeeded. The opinion of the general public is difficult to read on the Internet, as it is primarily committed (film) fans who spread their opinions on social networks and rating platforms. In any case, on Metacritic , «Star Wars 9» has a mediocre audience score of 4.6 (slightly better than the 4.1 of «The Last Jedi», significantly worse than the 6.7 of «The Force Awakens»). Regardless of the rating, one thing is certain: «The Rise of Skywalker» is a unique finale. Here an attempt was made to coherently conclude a narrative that had been written over a period of more than 40 years.

It started in 1977

In 1977 George Lucas brought a film to the cinemas that starts in the middle of the action instead of at the beginning: «Star Wars» (as it was called in Germany at the time) begins when Anakin Skywalker is already called Darth Vader and the republic has already fallen. At the time, nobody thought of “Star Wars 9” and the new heroine Rey ( Daisy Ridley ). While Lucas had a larger story in mind from the start, his stance on how many films there would be has varied over the years, and he’s worked on the original trilogy of Star Wars 4, Star Wars 5, and «Star Wars 6» clearly struggles to stretch the storyline over just three films.

Star Wars 6: Return of the Jedi ( 1983) was criticized for recycling well-known plot elements and for being designed with toy figure sales in mind. Nevertheless, George Lucas and his team managed to write film history with the «Star Wars» trilogy. It was technically a pioneering achievement, shaped the image of modern blockbuster cinema with its seriality and merchandise and gave generations of cinema viewers a treasure trove of archetypal figures that determined their thinking as only fairy tales did before. George Lucas was so frustrated by the many technical hurdles encountered during filming that he didn’t touch Star Wars and the Skywalker story for almost 15 years afterwards.

The Prequels: George Lucas unleashed

Star Wars 9 was still 25 years away when George Lucas began revisiting Star Wars in the mid-1990s. Only he wasn’t planning a sequel to the adventures of Luke, Han and Leia, instead he wanted to tell the prequel story of how Anakin Skywalker became the cyborg Darth Vader (thus making the previously little-known term «prequel» socially acceptable). In terms of content, film technology and the accompanying media circumstances, Lucas would have been familiar with “ Star Wars 1 ”, “ Star Wars 2 ” and “ Star Wars 3″ could hardly be further removed from his original trilogy: «Episode 1: The Phantom Menace» was the first film that was discussed in a really big way on the Internet — in 1977 at the cinema release of the original «Star Wars», it was not even decided whether VHS or Betamax should become the home video system of the future.

For the first time, George Lucas felt free when working on Star Wars: the computer effects allowed him to stage whatever beings and worlds he had in mind. Nobody talked him into it. While Lucas still had to deal with other directors and screenwriters for the original films, this time he took over the staging completely himself and also wrote the scripts largely by himself. How successful the result is can be discussed at length, in any case the prequels are auteur cinema in its purest form and tell the story of a personal and national decline in the form of gigantic CGI battles, soap opera dialogues and kindergarten humor.

The sequels with «Star Wars 9»: Disney capitalizes on nostalgia

Stylistically and technically, the prequels fit the original trilogy about as well as toothpaste fits burger sauce, but for George Lucas, it was the end of the «Star Wars» film series. He declared that publicly in 2005, only to sell his company Lucasfilm to Disney seven years later and with it rough story ideas for a new trilogy, which this time should actually follow on from the old films…

… although these concepts were largely thrown away under Disney. Hit director JJ Abrams has been hired to simultaneously continue and bring the hugely successful Star Wars saga to a new generation with Star Wars 7: The Force Awakens. For the first time, the impetus for new «Star Wars» films was primarily of a financial nature: Of course, George Lucas also wanted to make money with his films, but Disney had the new trilogy decidedly nostalgic and that’s why not only the old stars returned to Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher, but the worlds and spaceships also looked almost exactly like they did in the seventies and eighties (just implemented with better special effects).

«Star Wars 9»: An impossible conclusion

George Lucas didn’t think about «Star Wars 9: The Rise of Skywalker» in 1977 and neither did he in 1999 when «Star Wars 1» hit the cinemas, even JJ Abrams apparently didn’t think much about his graduation with «Star Wars 7». Instead, he initially planned to stick with one film, and then Rian Johnson took over for “ Star Wars 8 ”, apparently without having any guidelines for the plot. With «Star Wars 9» Abrams set himself the mammoth task of completing a disparate film series in addition to a disparate trilogy without ignoring certain films — at least not completely.

›› «Star Wars 9» at Disney+ *

It is striking how little reference is made to the prequels in this film, which is officially advertised as the end of the Skywalker saga. Nevertheless, «Star Wars 9» is closer to the prequels than it seems at first glance, precisely because of the surprise return of the Emperor, as Palpatine plays almost no role in two films in the original trilogy and is much in «Episode 1-3». more present And it remains a fascinating fact that «The Rise of Skywalker» concludes a story whose chapters were created over a period of more than 40 earthly years under completely different production conditions and now, despite everything, add up to a whole.

Star Wars 9: The Rise of Skywalker Trailer DF
Star Wars 9: The Rise of Skywalker Trailer DF

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