Have you ever wondered what the net worth of George Lucas is?
After all, he is the creator of the American epic space saga Star Wars which hit theatres in 1977 and quickly became a worldwide pop-culture phenomenon.
Star Wars films have dominated the box office over the past 40 years, grossing more than $10 billion worldwide.
But Star Wars isn’t just a collection of movies. From 1978 to 2013, Star Wars produced over $3 billion in revenue from toys alone.
They have also made $3.5 billion in video games, $2 billion in book sales, and $1.3 billion in licensing deals.
As of May 2023, George Lucas has an estimated net worth of $5.4 billion dollars. Let’s explore how he started Star Wars, and how he was able to become a billionaire.
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George Lucas was born and raised in Modesto, California, on May 14, 1944.
At a young age, he was fascinated with three things comics, science fiction, and race car driving.
Surprisingly, he chose the latter as his career of choice and spent most of his days in high school racing underground circuits.
He thought racing was the life for him until he got into a tragic racing accident that totaled his car and nearly killed him.
With bruised lungs and in need of emergency care, George Lucas lost interest in racing as a career and decided to pursue other passions.
His father wanted Lucas to work for him at his stationery store but Lucas decided to go to Modesto Junior College instead to pursue art.
Before leaving to go to college though, he assured his dad that he was going to be a millionaire before 30.
Lucas quickly gained a passion for photography and filmmaking, and his favorite things to film were car races.
Through his interest in filming car racing, he met Haskell Wexler, an older cinematographer who was also a race car enthusiast.
Haskell Wexler was so impressed with Lucas’s talent that he was able to pull some strings and get help get Lucas admitted to the USC Film School.
There, he would receive both his bachelor’s and graduate degree from the prestigious university.
At USC, Lucas was able to meet and make connections with many other student filmmakers, most notably Steven Spielberg.
While at USC, he won many accolades for his directing work and even obtained a Warner Brothers student scholarship.
Upon graduation, he knew he wanted to start a production studio of his own and that’s what he set out to do.
The Net Worth Of George Lucas Before Star Wars
Upon getting his graduate degree, he co-founded American Zoetrope in an attempt to help filmmakers direct films without the harsh Hollywood oversight.
Like most businesses that try to overthrow the current incumbents, it ended up failing, and the one movie he produced through that studio flopped.
However, Lucas didn’t give up. He ended up creating his own studio, Lucasfilm Ltd., and successfully directed the hit film American Graffiti in 1973.
American Graffiti is considered by many to be one of the most profitable movies of all time as the movie was made with a budget of just $770,000 and grossed over $140 million worldwide.
The film’s box-office success made George Lucas an instant millionaire by 29. This led to a net worth of $4 million dollars before Star Wars.
George Lucas Movies
After Lucas successfully directed American Graffiti he wanted to make an adaption of the hit TV show Flash Gordon.
Fortunately for him, he wasn’t able to obtain the rights, which led him to write an original space adventure movie that would turn into Star Wars.
Despite his success and original idea, all but one studio turned down Star Wars.
The studio that accepted Lucas’s idea was Fox studios and they offered him half a million dollars to direct the film.
This was a huge pay bump for Lucas as he was only offered $150,000 for American Graffiti.
However, Lucas turned down the pay raise. Instead, he would make the smartest financial move of his life.
He would negotiate that he retain all merchandising rights and retain the rights to any sequels.
Fox was happy to comply with these terms as the studio did not think that Star Wars would turn into much.
Clearly, this was a huge win for Lucas as he would end up owning 100% of Lucasfilm. On October 30, 2012, George Lucas sold Lucasfilm to Disney for $4.05 billion.
He was compensated half in cash and half in shares of Disney stock.
George Lucas Movies Outside of Star Wars
Many of us know Lucas for creating Star Wars. However, George Lucas was also the executive producer for all of the Indiana Jones movies.
Interestingly enough though, George Lucas isn’t full of directing success.
Many of the movies George Lucas executively produced have flopped at the box office like Twice Upon a Time, Red Tails, Strange Magic, Labyrinth, and Return to Oz.
It goes to show that you don’t need a life full of success. One big break can be all you need.
George LucAs of May 2023
As of May 2023, the net worth of George Lucas is $5.4 billion dollars. He now lives in Nicasio California with his wife Mellody Hobson.
You may have seen the house of George Lucas on Variety or Business Insider but if not you can check it out here. Must be nice having $5.4 billion dollars in the bank.
Lucas doesn’t spend all his money on nice homes though. He is also a big philanthropist and has signed the Giving Pledge.
The Giving Pledge is a philanthropic campaign led by Bill Gates and Warren Buffett.
The campaign encourages America’s richest individuals to donate the majority of their wealth to charities after their death.
Now that you know what the net worth of George Lucas is and how he built it, let’s take a look at some of the most important lessons we can take from his journey.
The Law of Attraction
When Lucas was just a high school senior he told his dad that he would be a millionaire before turning 30.
He ended up becoming a millionaire at 29. There are 20.27 million millionaires in America. All of them believed they would become a millionaire before they were one.
When Jim Carrey talked about the law of attraction on Oprah he said, “you can’t just visualize and then go eat a sandwich.”
What he meant by that is having dreams and goals are great, but they will never accomplish without action.
Remember, Lucas’s first studio and film were a bust. However, he persevered and went on to accomplish great things.
Pursue Your Passions
After high school, Lucas’s dad wanted him to work for him at his stationery store.
However, Lucas knew he would rather pursue his passion and go to art school.
By pursuing his passion he was able to make great connections and truly love what he did.
Think Long Term
George Lucas could’ve easily accepted the $500,000 to direct Star Wars.
Instead, he turned it down because he saw what it could turn into in the long term.
Many times we sacrifice long-term success for short-term pleasures.
By thinking long-term, George Lucas was able to make substantially more money from Star Wars than if he accepted his original deal.