Terence Stamp Calls George Lucas A Boring Director

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George Lucas has never really been known as an “actor’s director.” Just watch any of the Star Wars prequels and you’ll understand why. Best case in point is British actor Terence Stamp, who recently revealed his distaste of George Lucas’ directing style.

In an interview with Empire Magazine, Terence Stamp spoke quite candidly about his role and experience working with George Lucas on Star Wars. Stamp played Chancellor Valorum, Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic, in 1999’s Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. Stamp says:

We didn’t get on at all. I didn’t rate him that much as a director, really. I didn’t feel like he was a director of actors; he was more interested in stuff and effects. He didn’t interest me and I wouldn’t think I interested him.

Lucas’ films are much more known for their visual panache and technological innovations than their engaging narratives and acting. But to get a better idea of Stamp’s experience, the 74-year-old actor continued:

I came all the way back from Australia to do it. I didn’t want to but my agent leaned on me and I wanted to meet Natalie Portman because I’d seen her in The Professional. And I did meet her and she was absolutely enchanting. But on the day I’m supposed to do my scene with her, for which I’d traveled halfway around the world, I said, ‘Where’s Natalie?’ And George says, ‘That’s Natalie,’ and points to a bit of paper on the wall. It was just boring.

Terence Stamp is no slouch! He’s a very dynamic and passionate actor. Just take into consideration his award-winning roles in movies such as Billy Budd, The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, and The Limey, and let’s not forget his over-the-top performance as General Zod in Richard Donner’s Superman movies. If only Lucas could’ve tapped into that energy, maybe The Phantom Menace could’ve been a much better movie. We could have had something similar to this moment from Superman II


  1. George Lucas really isn’t anything but an idea man. Almost everything great about the original trilogy can and should be attributed to others like Gary Kurtz and Ralph McQuarrie. Lucas is good in a lot of ways with his other films but he seemed to drop the ball with Star Wars

    • DocZavage says:

      I disagree. The first Star Wars film (ep 4 – A New Hope) is quite a great film, not only in the FXs but in the story telling department and that is all Lucas directing. A fluke perhaps…or muscle, but a great film nevertheless.

      • As a life long Star Wars fan I have to disagree. A New Hope in retrospect has a very student film shooting style and pace. It is better since the “Special edition” when they added more fx and upped the pace of the x-wing battles against the death star. The best two star wars films to date will always be “Empire and Jedi”…both NOT directed by Lucas. I think George has always been better at ideas but not at execution. It would have been nice if Lucas had only directed Phantom and passed the torch like he did the last time, but all the prequels were terrible. It is clear from watching people act first had when you have little to no sets, almost everything green screen, paper on the wall and tennis balls on sticks for actors your film will be flat. As someone who works professionally in the film industry I had to take my kid goggles and childhood memories out of my head when I watch A New Hope these days for objective review. It is a good film, but a dry executed one.