Steven Spielberg Sees Hollywood 'Meltdown;' George Lucas Agrees

Image: Steven Spielberg Sees Hollywood 'Meltdown;' George Lucas Agrees Filmmakers Steven Spielberg, left and George Lucas.

Friday, 14 Jun 2013 11:09 AM

By Clyde Hughes

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Steven Spielberg's prediction this week of an impending Hollywood "implosion" continues a trend of directors speaking out about the increasing challenges facing the moviemaking business.

Spielberg and "Star Wars" creator George Lucas spoke together at the University of Southern California's School of Cinematic Arts in Los Angeles on Wednesday, according to The Independent. He said the failures of upcoming big budget movies will ultimately make it even more difficult for young filmmakers to break in while ticket price will skyrocket.

"There’s eventually going to be an implosion, or a big meltdown… where three or four or maybe even a half-dozen mega-budget movies are going to go crashing into the ground, and that’s going to change the paradigm," The Independent said Spielberg told his USC audience. "You’re gonna have to pay $25 for the next 'Iron Man.' You’re probably only going to have to pay $7 to see 'Lincoln.' "

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Hollywood has already seen its first major flop of the summer-going season. "After Earth," starring the usually bankable Will Smith, has made $47 million at the box office as of June 10. Executives spent $130 million making the movie, according to Jam! Showbiz.

The Independent said Lucas agreed with Spielberg's assessment. Lucas fought publicly to get his movie "Red Tails," a story of the Tuskegee Airmen, to the big screen.

"You’re talking about Steven Spielberg and George Lucas can’t get their movie into a theatre," Lucas said, according to The Independent. "What you’re going to end up with is fewer theatres. Bigger theatres, with a lot of nice things. Going to the movies is going to cost you 50 bucks, maybe 100. Maybe 150."

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Director Steven Soderbergh threatened to retire after he struggled to find a theatrical release for his Liberace biopic "Behind the Candelabra," despite a big name cast that included Michael Douglas and Matt Damon. The movie eventually made its debut on HBO, according to

"There’s no question in my mind that if it had been five years earlier that we’d probably would have gotten it," Soderbergh told in a May interview. "But the pressure has gotten so extreme. I talk to people at the studios about it all the time."

Related stories:

'Jurassic Park 4' Director is Colin Trevorrow, Not Steven Spielberg

Disney Layoffs: LucasArts, Consumer Products Divisions Cutting Jobs

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