The Instigator
TheBathead
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
SkepticalDebatee
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

I Have a Bad Feeling About Disney Acquiring Star Wars

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/10/2014 Category: Movies
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 946 times Debate No: 54421
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (6)
Votes (0)

 

TheBathead

Pro

Disney has recently acquired Star Wars, and I believe it is to the detriment of the franchise. I will accept a challenge from someone who believes it is good for the franchise, and in the debate I will explain why I believe the franchise will be hurt and Con will explain why he or she believes it will benefit. We will discuss whether the franchise will overall gain or lose from the deal. I am not giving any arguments in my challenge, and I will not accept any acceptances that contain arguments.
SkepticalDebatee

Con

I accept the challenge.
Debate Round No. 1
TheBathead

Pro

Here's why I have a bad feeling. Two main reasons:

One, Lucasfilm isn't the only major American fiction creator that's been acquired by Disney. Marvel and Pixar were too. All three were major creators before Disney acquired them. Disney also acquired the Muppets, which while not as big was still widely beloved. Disney seems to be monopolizing more and more franchises.

Two, Disney is known for being strict about copyright. This may not matter too much in many cases, but with Star Wars it's quite dire, owing to the vast "Expanded Universe" of fan-made content. Before the merger, George Lucas openly sanctioned this content, and even took pains to ensure it aligned with a common timeline. But now with the merger with Disney, on Star Wars Day about a week ago, Disney announced that the entire Expanded Universe was non-canon. The EU was by that time so much larger than the six core films that most of the Star Wars galaxy vanished just like that. Sure that included a lot of terrible content, hopefully including the Holiday Special, but many EU works were up to snuff with the films themselves, especially the prequel trilogy, and a few even surpassed The Empire Strikes Back. But now with a wave of Disney's hand, all of it is gone. Now that content still exists, and many fans may recognize it over Disney's new direction, but it's no longer that intertwined. This may allow fans more creativity, but it destroys that unified feel, and I wouldn't consider it out of the question that Disney might ban bigger fan projects altogether. Before Star Wars was acquired by Disney, what's more, it was only one of two franchises worldwide that openly sanctioned fan content, and now that it no longer does, the only one left is the Japanese Touhou Project, which arguably even in the EU has much less serious content. So this marks a major blow to fan content as a whole.

Both of those are, in my opinion, great disturbances in the Force.
SkepticalDebatee

Con

I believe that Disney's buying of Star Wars is a good thing. I will now present several reasons why.

Disney recently acquired the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) and under it's reign all has been good. One film from the MCU with Disney as publisher have over 90% on Rotten Tomatoes. [1] This is rare especially for a superhero movie. Audiences were even more enthusiastic, giving it an A+ and over a billion dollars. [2] (5th point.) Furthermore it's attached to a director (and co-writer) who is regarded as being a good or great director. He also successfully rebooted Star Trek The RT scores for the films are, 95% and 87%. [3] The second one, while not received as well as the first, (Still great for an action/sci-fi film though.) was mainly disliked by people for something that this new Star Wars film couldn't do. (Spoilers*) It's other co-writer, Lawrence Kasdan, is also very good. He co-wrote the second two Star Wars films and the first Indiana Jones film. He has also been nominated for three screenwriting Oscars (as well as an Oscar for best picture. [4] With this in mind there is every reason to believe that the films will be good. This will be great for Star Wars as finally it won't be half bad. [5] (More than half if you are going by run time.) You mentioned the EU being much more significant and its being uncanonized, and while I will attack this more in my rebuttal, but since more people care about the movies than the EU my point still stands. In a subjective debate majority opinion rules.

Furthermore there are other benefits to Disney owning Star Wars that couldn't have occurred otherwise. The big one of course is Star Wars theme park rides. [6] You can't really argue that this is a bad thing. I think that it would be awesome to go into the world of Star Wars, especially as it sounds like it's going to be on the scale of Universal's Harry Potter World. The other big thing is the possibility that Disney would rerelease the original Star Wars cut on DVD or Blu-Ray. Disney loves all that kind of limited edition stuff, and they know that there is an audience for it. The only reason that this wouldn't happen is if George Lucas put some kind of red tape on their contract or if it is impossible to get the original film. (Although it does make more sense for them to hide it for a surprise reveal than for them to not simply come out and say "we can't")

1. http://www.rottentomatoes.com...
2. http://www.cinemascore.com...
3. http://www.rottentomatoes.com... http://www.rottentomatoes.com...
4. http://www.imdb.com...
5. http://redlettermedia.com... (If you aren't convinced they are bad films this will do it for you.)
6. http://www.ign.com...

*It ripped off the ending of the first second Star Trek film while wimping out on what made it great.
Debate Round No. 2
TheBathead

Pro

You make some good points. Disney has indeed done great things with Marvel properties and, like I said in my opening argument, I expect them to do the same for Star Wars. However, my bad feeling would have been much more justified under Disney's previous CEO Michael Eisner. Disney under Eisner was producing worse and worse grossing films towards the end of his career, [1] arguably because they were less and less creative. [2] Now, though, that seems to be changing. [3] And you're right about them handling the Marvel films well.

What I'm more worried about though isn't the franchise itself but the general legal status of fan works. While I do believe that Disney couldn't really have made new full-scale films that fit into the Expanded Universe, and fans still have the right to make new fan works even outside of canon, I again emphasize that Disney has a good chance of imposing the same canon policy on new fan works as they already have on their other properties. Thus, there could be no further fan publications on the scale of the Thrawn Trilogy or Darth Plagueis. Yes, the Expanded Universe hasn't been as popular as the core films, but it's by far the largest of any franchise, and now with Disney's acquisition, what will be the legal status of new and old EU works? Will new ones not be allowed to be sold? Will old ones become owned by Disney? Star Wars was a special thing for fan works, and now that specialness is gone.

This is in large part up in the air, as Disney's president, Bob Iger, will be replaced not long after Star Wars Episode 7 is released. [4] It's not clear yet who will succeed him, and Disney's new copyright policy could greatly change depending on who it is, such as the president of Marvel. [5]

But Disney is known for heeding fan input, and we the fans may be able to retain rights to Star Wars fan works if we speak out. However, I believe the time to do so is *now*, before Disney makes any further policy changes in the leadup to Episode 7.

[1] http://boxofficemojo.com...
[2]http://www.decentfilms.com...
[3] http://www.thewire.com...
[4] http://articles.latimes.com...
[5] http://www.latinoreview.com...
SkepticalDebatee

Con

I will now provide a rebuttal for my opponents case.

1. This argument seems like it is cut short, as if my opponent laid the groundwork, but forgot the actual point. Obviously if Disney had a monopoly on the film industry it would be a bad thing but this is nowhere near the truth. Last year Disney made less than Warner Bros. [1]

2. The Expanded Universe is now non-canon. Sort of. It is now being labeled as an alternate universe titled "Star Wars Legends". Already new content is being planned. New content will continue to be produced with no effect imposed upon it, other than a new header. [2] This also brings up further evidence that the films will be good. The reasons cited for the decision are "In order to give maximum creative freedom to the filmmakers and also preserve an element of surprise and discovery for the audience,". Giving creators freedom to their film is a known method to helping ensure quality. Just look at the first two Spider-man films compared to the third. [3]

1. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com...
2.http://starwars.com...
3. http://www.rottentomatoes.com... http://www.rottentomatoes.com... http://www.rottentomatoes.com...
Debate Round No. 3
TheBathead

Pro

Things are not looking good for my case now. I seem to be losing the argument. Con brings up points that I was not aware of. I did not know that new Expanded Universe content was in progress, much less that production was not restricted. However, it does surprise me that Con ignored my first point in round 2 yet brought it up in round 3. While Disney will never likely by any means monopolize *all* franchises, on further analysis, more and more are coming under the leadership of Disney and its competitors, e.g. DC, Marvel's competitor (Warner Bros.) and Star Trek, Star Wars' competitor (Viacom). This takes them out of the hands of their original independent directors and puts them in the hands of large companies that may not care as directly about their properties and have more of a profit motive to override their creative impulses. I wish Con had brought this up earlier so we could have had more time to debate it.

As for fan content, it's good news that it is still proceeding as usual, by and large, but with Disney's leadership up in the air, as I mentioned in round 3, it's only a matter of time whether that changes.

If Con can successfully defeat my remaining argument in the final round, then I will be prepared to lose graciously, as I was even before I started this debate. Con's arguments have even begun to convince me that my cause may not be entirely just.
SkepticalDebatee

Con

My opponent concedes on all of my arguments in round 3. He then continues his EU argument which I feel I have attacked thoroughly.

The only new thing that my opponent brings up is that Disney's leadership is changing. This will occur at the end of June in 2016. [1] While it could potentially be problematic, who will actually replace Iger is at this moment far too speculative to really be considered an argument.

For these reasons I can see no other vote than con.

1. http://www.deadline.com...
Debate Round No. 4
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by Jman0056 3 years ago
Jman0056
And besides they can't ruin star wars more than lucas already did withe preq's
Posted by Jman0056 3 years ago
Jman0056
J.J. Abrams was never a fan of star trek when he was growing up. However, Star Trek and Star Trek into darkness were amazing movies. They were a great reboot to the series and gave us a new look at The Enterprise and her crew. Now, Abrams was NOT a fan of Star Trek growing up (he watched them as an adult though and loved them) but he WAS a fan of Star Wars. Now, think about how GOOD the new Star Treks were. Just imagine how much better those movies could have been Abrams had years of love and affection for that series. Thats how amazing star wars will be. Disney only owns them. Abrams is directing.
Posted by TheBathead 3 years ago
TheBathead
MyDinosaurHands, if you liked the reference here, you should check out my opinion and poll about this!
Posted by TheBathead 3 years ago
TheBathead
iOS, I only excluded arguments from the opening round. All three other rounds are totally open to arguments.
Posted by MyDinosaurHands 3 years ago
MyDinosaurHands
Pro automatically wins for that Star Wars reference in the title of the debate itself.
Posted by iOS 3 years ago
iOS
This would've been quite the debate, if arguments were allowed.
No votes have been placed for this debate.