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Was Disney's 2012 purchase of Lucasfilm a good deal?

A decade after it happened, we can answer the question, 'Did Disney spend too much on Star Wars?'

Disney CEO Bob Iger and Star Wars creator George Lucas
Image credit: Joshua Sudock/Disneyland Resort via Getty Images

2022 marks the ten-year point since George Lucas sold Lucasfilm to the Walt Disney Company, laying the groundwork for the return of the franchise to the big screen, as well as its current incarnation as the critical darling of the Disney+ streaming service, thanks to Andor.

The sale in 2012 cost Disney $5.905 billion, split between $4.05 billion in cash, and an additional $1.855 billion in Disney stock for George Lucas; that latter part might have ballooned to somewhere in the region of $7 billion in the decade since, although that’s more good luck on Lucas’ part than anything that cost Disney any more than it had 10 years ago. Almost six billion dollars is a lot of money, so, a decade later, it might be time to ask: was it worth it?

Estimating the actual value of the Star Wars franchise in 2022 isn’t easy; for one thing, the franchise has moved from being primarily a cinematic franchise with associated merchandise to being something that exists in the streaming space as well as having a massive publishing and merchandising program behind it.

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Graeme McMillan avatar
Graeme McMillan: Popverse Editor Graeme McMillan (he/him) has been writing about comics, culture, and comics culture on the internet for close to two decades at this point, which is terrifying to admit. He completely understands if you have problems understanding his accent.
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