How would you describe unofficial Episode 1 news on the Internet?
Does the large number of Star Wars fan sites surprise you?
No, I'm glad that there is tremendous anticipation for the film.
Why don't you visit Star Wars fan sites on the Internet?
I don't have the time for those types of things right now. I'm a single father trying to raise three children, a businessman trying to run a large corporation and a director trying to complete a film project.
Since some consider Episode 1 to be the most anticipated film of all time, are you starting to feel any stress from that?
No, directing Episode 1 has been the most pleasant time I have ever had associated with a film production. Stress occurs when you have a studio breathing down your neck demanding that you finish your film before it is ready and then won't give you enough money to finish it. That is stress and that is what happened to me when I made the first one.
Why do you feel the need to release information about what we might see in Episode 1?
The Prequel Trilogy is going to have a new, distinct and different look than the first trilogy. I want the fans to get use to this new look and to get comfortable with it. I draw a line between releasing bits and pieces about the design of the film as opposed to essential plot elements that will appear in the film.
Do alleged leaks from the set of Episode 1 come as a surprise?
No, you have to put yourself in the shoes of someone who works as an extra on this kind of film. It's only human nature that someone who spends a day or two on the set of a film of this magnitude would want to tell their friends and whoever else will listen what they saw and heard during filming. It becomes our job to mask and obscure what's really going on the set as best we can.
Can you give us examples of how you accomplish this countermeasure?
Episode 1 occurs about 32 years prior to Star Wars: A New Hope. How long after A New Hope does the Sequel Trilogy occur?
If I ever get around to doing another trilogy, those films would be set about 30 or so years into the future. Luke would be about the same age as Obi-Wan was in A New Hope.
What's your involvement in Star Wars collectibles?
They [Lucas Licensing] will show me various ideas they have and I give them a yes or no.
What collectible ideas have you said no to?
Boba Fett beer. (laughs)
Speaking of Fett. What can you tell us about Fett's role in Episode 2?
How much is Episode 1 likely to earn at the box office?
The film should do well.
Will it beat Titanic?
I'm not interested in setting records with Episode 1.
You stated in a past issue of the Star Wars Insider that the Prequel Trilogy is going to dramatically change the way we perceive the classic trilogy. How so?
The truth about events and characters often depends solely on the point of view we are given. If you change that point of view even slightly, it can drastically alter the way we view those events or characters.
When will we get to see the fourth installment of Indiana Jones?
Probably 2001 at the earliest. It depends more on Steven and Harrison's schedules than mine. I'm ready to do it whenever they find the time.
Would you be willing to release a special edition of the Indiana Jones Trilogy for the 20th anniversary of Raiders of the Lost Ark's release in 2001?
By that time, we should be extremely busy with both Episode 2 and the next Indiana Jones film, but we should be able to have something special for the 20th anniversary.
Why did you act as the executive producer of the Indiana Jones movies instead of the director?
By the time I had finished directing Star Wars, I knew that I was not going to direct again for a very, very long time. At the time, I felt that I could accomplish more artistically by producing instead of directing. Also, Steven told me, on a vacation in Hawaii, that he wanted to direct a James Bond film, but United Artists told him that only British directors were allowed to helm the Bond films. I told Steven that I had an idea that was better than Bond. Suffice it to say that Steven agreed to direct and I agreed to produce Raiders of the Lost Ark