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George Lucas Fast Facts

CNN Editorial Research

(CNN) — Here’s a look at the life of filmmaker George Lucas.


Birth date: May 14, 1944

Birth place: Modesto, California

Birth name: George Walton Lucas Jr.

Father: George Lucas Sr., office supply store owner

Mother: Dorothy (Bomberger) Lucas

Marriages: Mellody Hobson (2013-present); Marcia Griffin (1969-1983, divorced)

Children: with Mellody Hobson: Everest (daughter), 2013; adopted as a single father: Jett, 1993, Katherine, 1988; adopted with Marcia Griffin: Amanda, 1981

Education: Modesto Junior College, A.A., 1964; University of Southern California, B.F.A., 1966

Other Facts:

Originally wanted to be a race car driver, but changed his mind after a near fatal car accident.

Teamed with Steven Spielberg to make the “Indiana Jones” series of movies.

Founder of the George Lucas Educational Foundation, which promotes innovation in education.

Won two Daytime Emmy Awards.

Nominated for four Academy Awards. Received the honorary Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award in 1992.


1967 – Gets an internship at Warner Brothers.

1968 – His short film “Electronic Labyrinth: THX-1138:4EB” wins the best film award at the National Student Film Festival.

1968 – Works as Francis Ford Coppola’s assistant during the filming of “The Rain People.”

1971 – Forms Lucasfilm.

1973 – The film “American Graffiti,” co-written and directed by Lucas, is released. It is nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

1975 – Founds Industrial Light and Magic, a division of Lucasfilm, to create the special effects for “Star Wars.” Industrial Light and Magic becomes a leader in the special effects field, working on many films including, “The Abyss,” “Jurassic Park,” “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest,” and “Iron Man.”

1977 – “Star Wars,” written and directed by Lucas, is released. It wins seven Oscars. The title is changed to “Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope” when it is re-released in 1981.

1980 – “Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back” released.

1983 – “Star Wars: Episode VI – The Return of the Jedi” is released.

March 30, 1992 – Is presented with the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award at 64th Academy Awards.

1999 – “Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace” is released.

2002 – “Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones” is released.

2005 – “Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith” is released.

2008 – “Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” an animated film based on the Star Wars films, is released. Also, the television series, “Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” premieres on Cartoon Network.

2010 – Signs the Giving Pledge, promising to give half his fortune to charity.

2012 – Sells Lucasfilm to Walt Disney for $4 billion.

January 25, 2013 – Walt Disney Studios announces that J.J. Abrams will direct the next “Star Wars” movie installment.

July 10, 2013 – Is awarded the National Medal of Arts by US President Barack Obama.

June 2013 – Wins a Daytime Emmy award for Outstanding Special Class Animated Program for “Star Wars: The Clone Wars.”

June 2014 – Wins a Daytime Emmy award for Outstanding Special Class Animated Program for “Star Wars: The Clone Wars.”

June 24, 2014 – It is announced that Chicago has won the bid to build the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art.

December 6, 2015 – Is a Kennedy Center Honors recipient.

June 24, 2016 – The Lucas Museum of Narrative Art issues an announcement that it is withdrawing from its original location in Chicago amid delays. The executive leadership confirms that the museum will be built in California instead.

January 10, 2017 – The Board of Directors for the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art announces plans to build the museum in South Los Angeles. The museum will include a wide array of educational, artistic and cultural experiences and amenities.

March 14, 2018 – Construction on the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art breaks ground in Los Angeles.

May 6, 2024 – The Cannes Film Festival announces that George Lucas will receive the Palme d’Or at the closing ceremonies on May 25.

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