Producer Gary Kurtz was there for the earliest foundations of Star Wars, so it stands to reason he’s got some insights on the whats and the wherefores and the how-comes. With Star Wars undergoing a new beginning of sorts in the wake of the Disney buyout, it’s the perfect time to look back at how George Lucas‘ epic franchise first came together, and new interview with Kurtz reveals several fascinating tidbits about the earliest origins of Star Wars, and just how much influence that other iconic space series had on Lucas’ creation.
Writer Chris Taylor interviewed Kurtz for his new book How Star Wars Conquered the Universe, but he also shared some very intriguing insights via Mashable. It’s more or less common knowledge that Star Wars owes much of its existence to the classic sci-fi serials that Lucas grew up loving. In fact, the original plan for what became Star Wars was to make an actual new Flash Gordon movie. But Flash rights owners King Features insisted on “draconian” restrictions, and so Lucas and Kurtz instead began discussing making an original space opera movie in the same vein as those staples of Golden Age sci-fi. Kurtz said: