Is George Lucas’ Red Tails In Trouble?

Published 5 years ago by , Updated February 15th, 2014 at 4:27 pm,

In recent years George Lucas has become something of a whipping boy for film fans, who cite his revisionist approach to film-making as tantamount to heresy.

Well, they might be able to get on their high horses again with news that Lucas was so unhappy with director Anthony Hemingway’s work on the film that he has ordered (and will direct) “massive” re-shoots for his forthcoming producing effort Red Tails.

Red Tails is a fictional tale of the real life Tuskegee Airmen, who were the first African-American pilots to fly in the Second World War. Terrence Howard and Cuba Gooding Jr headline the cast of the forthcoming film.

Principal photography wrapped on Red Tails in November, but First Showing reports that “hefty” rewrites are taking place and that producer Rick McCallum is looking at all the footage that has been shot to ascertain how much re-shooting needs to be carried out to meet George Lucas’ vision.

tuskegee airmen Is George Lucas Red Tails In Trouble?

The Real Tuskegee Airmen

First Showing is also reporting that Lucas’ company Lucas Film is emailing movie sites around the web stating that the story is totally inaccurate, but the site says that they are standing by their scoop – so what is really going on?

It’s hard to say – the film could be in trouble, but like quite a few directors Lucas loves to save some time (and budget) for “pick-ups” or re-shoots once the film has gone into the editing process. These take place so that he can fix things that don’t work or insert footage that helps tell the story more fluently. Lucas saved about two weeks for this on each of the recent Star Wars prequels. In fact in Episode One you can see the extent of these re-shoots by Ewan McGregor’s hair (and weight) in the film. The actors hair length fluctuates from being very short, to being much longer (a wig) and his weight seems have increased by the time the re-shoots rolled around.

I’ve no doubt that re-shoots are taking place on Red Tails, and that (at least part of) what First Showing heard was correct, but the film might not be in trouble, Lucas could just be finessing the film to meet his vision – after all he has been talking about this project for over a decade, and why shouldn’t he direct so second unit work if he wants (there could be worse choices for second unit director).

I have to admit that I’m a Lucas supporter, and I don’t hate the prequel films (or Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull) like most and I’m always interested in what Lucas has to offer (especially outside the Star Wars universe) so I think we should hold off judgment until we at least see the first trailer.

More on Red Tails when we get it!

Source: First Showing

TAGS: Red tails
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  1. george lucas is not my fave director but his vision has launched a thousand ships. this movie touches upon a subject i find fascinating and i hope its a good movie, but anything that has taken over a decade to translate to screen has issues.

    before the phantom menace came out, yahoo hosted a live chat with lucas and i had the chance to ask him one question, which was along the lines of what would you be doing if star wars hadnt been such a blockbuster? he answered he would be doing smaller cast drama movies, and that would better suit him as fantasy and scifi werent his only focus.

  2. Although I don't like the prequels at all I am giving Lucas one more chance to prove he can direct a movie since this is his first movie outside Star Wars in ages.
    He always stated that Star Wars was for kids so this might the reason why the prequels has so many problems in terms of characters and plot. Red Tail seems to be a serious movie so this is his chance to prove himself.
    Unfortunately I don't have much hope…

  3. You don't hate the prequels or Crystal Skull? You have no idea what you are talking about then, and your opinions on film are rendered irrelevant based on that proclamation of yours. Four of some of the worst major hollywood feature films of the modern era are okay to you!? No wonder you don't think Lucas coming in to screw with this film is a ludicrous idea based on his track record. First and last time I read this blog. WOW.

  4. Totally have no interest in any Spielberg and Lucas projects any more. Once they became “The Empire” they lost their mojo.

  5. @ Hombre. I agree with you with Lucas but Spielberg to me still makes good movies or not as bad as lucas. If your referring to Transformers I blame that more on Bay than Spielberg..

  6. I think that your comments are a bit unfair.
    Just because I don't hate the films does not mean that I have no idea what I'm talking about.
    I don't think that it makes my opinions on the film irrelevant – I haven't seen the film, and as it is still in production I can only assume that you haven't either.
    Do I think that the Star Wars prequels and Crystal Skull are as good as the other films in their series?
    No I don't.
    However, I can think of a quite a few films that are worse than the above mentioned four.
    Don't forget that Lucas was also behind American Graffiti and THX 1138, as well as producing a few other films of note.
    His involement in this film does not mean that he is “coming in to screw” with it.
    It is based on his story afterall

  7. Prequel films would have been better if Lucas had watched his own original SW films again. And I could have done without Jar-Jar……..

  8. You have to hate Crystal Skull and the SW Prequels to know what your talking about? Guess I'm hosed…..

  9. “Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi; you're my only hope.”

  10. I don't hate you or your comments. Just your avatar.

  11. You don't like bearded Mel?

  12. Wish he would have continued the Willow Saga back then,what a shame !

  13. Wish he would have continued the Willow Saga back then,what a shame !

  14. Wish he would have continued the Willow Saga back then,what a shame !

  15. Spielberg should of done this movie! he knows how to make great ww2 movies!!