David Senra

April 19, 2024

George Lucas: A Life

george lucas.jpeg

My top 10 highlights from the book:

1.  George Lucas unapologetically invested in what he believed in the most: himself.

2.  As soon as I made my first film I thought, Hey, I’m good at this. I know how to do this. From then on I’ve never questioned it.

3.  When I discovered film I fell madly in love with it. I ate it. I slept it. 24 hours a day. There was no going back.

4.   How many people think the solution to gaining quality control, improving fiscal responsibility, and stimulating technological innovation is to start their own special-effects company? But that’s what he did.

5.  One thing would have to change for sure: he’d control the money.

6.  My thing about art is that I don’t like the word art because it means pretension and bullshit, and I equate those two directly. I don’t think of myself as an artist. I’m a craftsman. I don’t make a work of art; I make a movie.

7.  That was a very dark period for me. We were in dire financial strait. I turned that down [directing someone else’s movie] at my bleakest point, when I was in debt to my parents, in debt to Francis Coppola, in debt to my agent; I was so far in debt I thought I’d never get out. It took years to get from my first film to my second film, banging on doors, trying to get people to give me a chance. Writing, struggling, with no money in the bank… getting little jobs, eking out a living. Trying to stay alive, and pushing a script that nobody wanted. (This movie —  American Graffiti —gets made. It makes $55 million on a $1 million investment)

8.  I know how good I am. American Graffiti is successful because it came entirely from my head. It was my concept. And that’s the only way I can work.

9.  Stay small. Be the best. Don’t lose any money.

10.  George Lucas is the Thomas Edison of the modern film industry.

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About David Senra

Learn from history's greatest founders. Every week I read a biography of an entrepreneur and tell you what I learned on Founders podcast