As you all may or may not know, one of the first all-black action pictures Red Tails premiered worldwide in movie theaters today, Friday, January 20th. Earlier this month, the producer/director George Lucas stopped by The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and talked about the challenges he had while making the film, how long it took to bring his idea to life as well as who he had in mind when creating the film:
ON HOW LONG IT TOOK TO CREATE ‘RED TAILS’:
23 years. We finished it. I financed it himself. I figured I could get the prints and ads paid for by the studios and that they would release it. And I showed it to all of them and they they said, ‘No. We don’t know how to market a movie like this.’ [...] It’s because it’s an all black movie. There’s no major white roles in it at all. It’s one of the first all-black action pictures ever made.
ON WHY THE MOVIE WASN’T INITIALLY SUPPORTED:
It’s a reasonably expensive movie. Normally black movies, like a Tyler Perry movie or something, they’re very low budget. Even they won’t even release his movies. They usually go to one of the non-major distributors. And they do well, but they do a certain amount of money and they know what that is. And this [Red Tails] costs more than what those movies make. And they don’t believe there’s any foreign market for it, but that’s 60% of their profit.
ON WHY HE CREATED THE FILM:
It was presented as – which was the reason I did it – I wanted to make it inspirational for teenage boys. I wanted to show that they have heroes, that they’re real American heroes, they’re patriots that helped make the country what it is today, and it’s not Glory where you have a lot of white officers running these guys into cannon fire. They were real heroes.
Lucas also shared how he started off with the support of 40 original Tuskeegee Airmen while writing the script. Over time, that number dwindled down to 7. But on a lighter not, if the film does well in the box office, the producer would like to release a prequel and sequel. Peep the clip below..
Watch: George Lucas On Creating ‘Red Tails’
ARE YOU GOING TO SUPPORT ‘RED TAILS’?