George Lucas Once Believed That ‘Revenge of the Sith’ Would Be the Worst Performing ‘Star Wars’ Film

Star Wars Episode III is a bit different from George Lucas’ other Star Wars films. The movie concluded Lucas’ prequel trilogy in one of the franchise’s darkest stories. Although many might have been excited about Lucas’ final Star Wars movie, the filmmaker actually figured Episode III would be his worst-performing film.

George Lucas once intended for ‘Revenge of the Sith’ to be the last ‘Star Wars’ movie

George Lucas holding an award
LOS ANGELES, CA – FEBRUARY 17: Filmmaker George Lucas accepts the George Lucas | Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Before Disney’s acquisition of Star Wars, Revenge of the Sith remained the last live-action Star Wars movie for a decade. The Star Wars franchise would continue to endure through various video games, television shows, and books. But as far as cinema, it seemed unlikely the series would return to the big screen. For Lucas, Star Wars‘ cinematic absence was intentional, as he believed Revenge of the Sith completely wrapped up his story.

“This is the last of the Star Wars movies. At the end of Return of the Jedi, the Republic is restored, and Darth Vader is redeemed. It took a very long time, but Anakin finally fulfills the prophecy that he will destroy the Sith and bring balance to the Force,” Lucas explained in an interview with Sci-fi online. “To me, there are no more stories to tell in movie form after that. It seems a natural and fulfilling place to end the story of the Skywalker family and the struggle of the Jedi and the Rebels to bring peace and freedom to the galaxy.”

George Lucas thought ‘Revenge of the Sith’ would be the worst performing ‘Star Wars’ film

Lucas was well aware that his third Star Wars film was going to stand out from his other movies.

“I think it’s very different than any of the other movies I’ve made. By now, I hope people have come to expect the unexpected from these movies – they are never quite what people are anticipating them to be, and I think that will be the case with Revenge of the Sith,” Lucas said.

Because of these qualities, Lucas was almost sure that his final Star Wars movie was sure to fall short.

“And then the third film is very, very, very dark,” Lucas told Empire. “It’s not a happy movie by any stretch of the imagination. It’s a tragedy. People think of Star Wars movies as happy movies. What they’re going to do about a tragedy, I don’t know. It will probably be the least successful of all the Star Wars movies – but I know that.”

‘Revenge of the Sith’ was one of the most successful ‘Star Wars’ films

Despite George Lucas’ concerns, Revenge of the Sith was actually one of the more successful films he made. According to box office mojo, it pulled in $868.4 million at the box office. Although it made less than The Phantom Menace, it made more than Attack of the Clones. Apart from the film’s commercial success, it was also the best-reviewed movie of Lucas’ prequel trilogy. From the input of several critics, the film holds a score of 80% on Rotten Tomatoes. Meanwhile, Phantom Menace and Clones have Rotten Tomatoes scores of 52% and 65% respectively.

RELATED: ‘Star Wars’: George Lucas Once Discussed Why He Felt People Hated Jar Jar Binks