George Lucas’ Ex-wife Cried in the Parking Lot After Watching Star Wars: The Phantom Menace

George Lucas' ex-wife's surprising reaction to Star Wars: The Phantom Menace.

George Lucas' Ex-wife Cried in the Parking Lot After Watching Star Wars: The Phantom Menace

SUMMARY

  • Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace received mixed reviews with many criticizing its storyline, casting choices, performances.
  • The filmmaker's ex-wife Marcia Lucas also did not find the film very pleasing. She even admitted to crying after watching the movie.
  • The Oscar winner perceived The Phantom Menace as a missed opportunity in storytelling and filmmaking.
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Episode I – The Phantom Menace marked George Lucas’s return to the director’s chair since A New Hope as he once again introduced new characters and stories in the space opera. While the film was a huge box office hit, it received mixed reviews with many criticizing its storyline, casting choices, performances, and awkward dialogues.

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George Lucas' Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace | Credit: Lucasfilm
George Lucas’ Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace | Credit: Lucasfilm

And it seems that the filmmaker’s ex-wife Marcia Lucas also did not find the film very pleasing. She even admitted to crying after watching the movie as she echoed many of the same critiques while sharing her thoughts on the movie.

The Phantom Menace Made George Lucas’ Ex-Wife Cry

George Lucas has collaborated with his ex-wife, Marcia Lucas, on movies like American Graffiti and the Original Star Wars trilogy. The film editor also won an Academy Award for Best Film Editing for the 1977 film A New Hope.

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The Phantom Menace (1999)
The Phantom Menace (1999) | Credit: Lucasfilm

However, when the renowned filmmaker returned with the prequel trilogy, her response was unexpectedly emotional. She shared her reaction to Episode I – The Phantom Menace in J. W. Rinzler’s book Howard Kazanjian: A Producer’s Life, admitting that the film brought her to tears. She said, as per The Direct,

“When I went to see Episode I—I had a friend who worked at ILM, who took me as a guest to a preview—I remember going out to the parking lot, sitting in my car and crying. I cried.”

 Obi-Wan Kenobi, Jar Jar Binks, and Qui-Gon Jinn in The Phantom Menace
A still from The Phantom Menace | Credit: Lucasfilm

She shared that she did not feel like it was very good and expressed her disappointment with the film’s quality and direction. Lucas also pointed out that instead of utilizing the full potential of the Star Wars saga, her ex-husband heavily relied on CGI and visual effects and labeled the movie as “eye candy.”

“And I thought he had such a rich vein to mine, a rich palette to tell stories with,” she said. Beyond technical concerns regarding the underutilization of the stories and characters and over-relying on visual effects, Marcia Lucas also criticized the dynamic between Anakin and Padme.

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Marcia Lucas Expressed Concern Over Anakin And Padme’s Dynamic

While Marcia Lucas praised George Lucas and acknowledged his talent, she still perceived The Phantom Menace as a missed opportunity in storytelling and filmmaking. One of the issues she highlighted in the book Howard Kazanjian: A Producer’s Life was regarding Queen Padme and Anakin’s dynamic in the movie.

Jake Lloyd in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace (1999) | Credit: IMDb

The Phantom Menace featured Natalie Portman in the role of the Queen Padme of Naboo alongside Jake Lloyd. He portrayed the role of Anakin Skywalker before Hayden Christensen took over the role in Attack of the Clones, as a more compatible match for Portman’s Padme.

Among many who raised the issues with these characters’ on-screen dynamic, Lucas also shared her criticism, stating,

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“He had all those characters. And I thought it was weird that the story was about this little boy who looked like he was six years old, but then later on he’s supposed to get with this princess who looked like she was twenty years old.”

Natalie Portman as Padme | Credit: IMDb
Natalie Portman as Padme | Credit: IMDb

While the prequel trilogy has constantly been the target of Star Wars fans’ criticism, especially The Phantom Menace, the filmmaker didn’t necessarily seem fazed by the negative reception.

The Phantom Menace is available to stream on Disney+.

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Written by Laxmi Rajput

Articles Published: 2436

Laxmi Rajput is a writer at Fandomwire. She finished her Post Graduation in Broadcast Journalism and worked as a Business News writer for a year. But her interest in entertainment and pop culture compelled her to find a way towards Entertainment Journalism. She has worked across various fields and has 2 years of experience in content writing. She likes reading, music, movies, and traveling. She aspires to become a fiction writer in the future.