100 books like George Lucas

By Brian Jay Jones,

Here are 100 books that George Lucas fans have personally recommended if you like George Lucas. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Skywalking: The Life And Films Of George Lucas

Peter Krämer Author Of American Graffiti: George Lucas, the New Hollywood and the Baby Boom Generation

From my list on the life and films of George Lucas.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have turned my childhood fascination with Hollywood into an academic career. For four decades I have explored, not least through extensive archival research, all aspects of the history of American cinema – films, filmmakers, studios, production histories, marketing campaigns, critical reception, audiences. Among other books, I have published three volumes in the British Film Institute’s Film Classics series (on Buster Keaton’s The General and Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove and 2001: A Space Odyssey). I have focused on some of the most highly acclaimed, most commercially successful, most ardently loved, and most influential movies of all time. The starting point for my work is always my passionate engagement with particular movies.

Peter's book list on the life and films of George Lucas

Peter Krämer Why did Peter love this book?

There have been so many books about George Lucas’s most famous creation, the Star Wars saga, and about the man himself.

As far as biographical accounts are concerned, Dale Pollock’s volume (initially published in 1983, and updated in 1990 and 1999) has to be given a lot of credit for being the first to properly introduce this unique filmmaker, whose life and career have been so full of unexpected twists and turns, to the world – and to me!

Pollock’s well-researched and very readable book set a high standard for all the writers following in his footsteps.

By Dale Pollock,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Skywalking as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Filled with revelations about the origins and making of American Graffiti, Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and Return of the Jedi, this only full-length biography of filmmaker and cinematic visionary George Lucas has been updated with a substantial new chapter that discusses the revamped Star Wars Trilogy Special Edition, the Star Wars prequels, the filming of the first installment, and the controversial ways in which Lucas's approach and success continue to alter the landscape of the film industry.


Book cover of George Lucas: Interviews

Peter Krämer Author Of American Graffiti: George Lucas, the New Hollywood and the Baby Boom Generation

From my list on the life and films of George Lucas.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have turned my childhood fascination with Hollywood into an academic career. For four decades I have explored, not least through extensive archival research, all aspects of the history of American cinema – films, filmmakers, studios, production histories, marketing campaigns, critical reception, audiences. Among other books, I have published three volumes in the British Film Institute’s Film Classics series (on Buster Keaton’s The General and Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove and 2001: A Space Odyssey). I have focused on some of the most highly acclaimed, most commercially successful, most ardently loved, and most influential movies of all time. The starting point for my work is always my passionate engagement with particular movies.

Peter's book list on the life and films of George Lucas

Peter Krämer Why did Peter love this book?

Apart from presenting George Lucas in his own words, this book offers a concise introduction to his career, including a chronology and a filmography.

The interviews collected herein go from a May 1971 article in the San Francisco Chronicle about the young filmmaker whose first feature, the rather abstract Science Fiction drama THX 1138, had just come out (and flopped!), all the way to a conversation with the Los Angeles Times in January 1999 about the forthcoming release of the first Star Wars prequel Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace.

Despite dramatic changes in Lucas’s status as a filmmaker (and businessman) across this period, the interviews reveal striking continuities, notably his striving for maximum control over his films and business affairs.

By Sally Kline (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked George Lucas as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A director, producer, and writer, George Lucas is the power behind ""The Force."" The son of a conservative small-town businessman, he grew up to become arguably the most identifiable and popular filmmaker in the history of the medium. Yet unlike his more publicly engaged contemporaries, Lucas rarely grants reporters an audience. This first book of Lucas's interviews affords fans and students of film and science fiction a rare opportunity. Editor Sally Kline collects conversations from the reticent director spanning Lucas's entire career, from the making of his first film, 1971's THX-1138, through American Graffiti, the triumph of the Star Wars…


Book cover of The Cinema of George Lucas

Peter Krämer Author Of American Graffiti: George Lucas, the New Hollywood and the Baby Boom Generation

From my list on the life and films of George Lucas.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have turned my childhood fascination with Hollywood into an academic career. For four decades I have explored, not least through extensive archival research, all aspects of the history of American cinema – films, filmmakers, studios, production histories, marketing campaigns, critical reception, audiences. Among other books, I have published three volumes in the British Film Institute’s Film Classics series (on Buster Keaton’s The General and Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove and 2001: A Space Odyssey). I have focused on some of the most highly acclaimed, most commercially successful, most ardently loved, and most influential movies of all time. The starting point for my work is always my passionate engagement with particular movies.

Peter's book list on the life and films of George Lucas

Peter Krämer Why did Peter love this book?

This lavishly illustrated large-format volume takes the reader from George Lucas’s childhood and early youth to his years at film school and his subsequent Hollywood career as a director, writer, and producer, with a particular emphasis on the production histories of his key films.

With unprecedented access to countless interviewees and archival materials, Hearn brings George Lucas and the making of his films to life.

Apart from telling compelling stories, he also reproduces a wide range of documents for the reader’s perusal so that the book may serve as an archive in its own right (and I have certainly used it precisely in this way in my own research).

By Marcus Hearn,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Cinema of George Lucas as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Acclaimed filmmaker George Lucas reinvigorated the science-fiction genre more than 25 years ago with Star Wars, one of the greatest epics and cultural icons of its generation. He has enthralled audiences with his grand vision, mythic narratives, and groundbreaking visual effects ever since, and he remains a pivotal figure in American cinema: Star Wars: Episode II (2002) was the first film to be shot entirely with state-of-the-art digital cameras, and Star Wars: Episode III, Revenge of the Sith is set for release on May 19, 2005. Marcus Hearn draws on exclusive interviews-as well as unprecedented access to the Lucasfilm archives-to…


Book cover of Star Wars

Peter Krämer Author Of American Graffiti: George Lucas, the New Hollywood and the Baby Boom Generation

From my list on the life and films of George Lucas.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have turned my childhood fascination with Hollywood into an academic career. For four decades I have explored, not least through extensive archival research, all aspects of the history of American cinema – films, filmmakers, studios, production histories, marketing campaigns, critical reception, audiences. Among other books, I have published three volumes in the British Film Institute’s Film Classics series (on Buster Keaton’s The General and Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove and 2001: A Space Odyssey). I have focused on some of the most highly acclaimed, most commercially successful, most ardently loved, and most influential movies of all time. The starting point for my work is always my passionate engagement with particular movies.

Peter's book list on the life and films of George Lucas

Peter Krämer Why did Peter love this book?

This short but very informative and stimulating book in the BFI Film Classics series was first published in 2009, with a new edition coming out in 2020.

Brilliantly illustrated with screenshots from Star Wars and some of the films George Lucas’s most famous production was influenced by, Will Brooker combines a meticulous analysis of the style, story, and themes of Star Wars with important details about the film’s production history and illuminating references to Lucas’s previous films and to the Star Wars saga as a whole.

By Will Brooker,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Star Wars as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The release of Star Wars in 1977 marked the start of what would become a colossal global franchise. Star Wars remains the second highest-grossing film in the United States, and George Lucas's six-part narrative has grown into something more: a culture that goes far beyond the films themselves, with tie-in toys, novels, comics, games and DVDs as well as an enthusiastic fan community which creates its own Star Wars fictions. Critical studies of Star Wars have treated it as a cultural phenomenon, or in terms of its special effects, fans and merchandising, or as a film that marked the end…


Book cover of Easy Riders Raging Bulls: How the Sex-Drugs-And Rock 'n Roll Generation Saved Hollywood

Nathan Abrams Author Of Kubrick: An Odyssey

From my list on fiction and nonfiction books about movie directors.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was old (or young) enough to have only seen two Kubrick films in the cinema: Full Metal Jacket and Eyes Wide Shut. I began teaching film studies and Hollywood in 1998, and I have been teaching and researching Kubrick intensively since 2007, visiting his archive in London on numerous occasions. At one point, I held the record for the researcher who had spent the most hours in the Archive. I also met Christiane and Jan and spoke to many others who knew and worked with Kubrick. Having been familiar with Robert Kolker’s work, it became clear that collaborating with an international authority on film was a necessity as well as a pleasure.

Nathan's book list on fiction and nonfiction books about movie directors

Nathan Abrams Why did Nathan love this book?

Peter Biskind chronicles the rise of New Hollywood in the 1970s, featuring such "movie brat" directors as Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola, and Steven Spielberg. But he also refers to such older directors as Stanley Kubrick.

It’s written in a chatty and easy-to-read style and is full of useful tidbits of information about Kubrick and especially his new backers at Warner Brothers.

By Peter Biskind,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked Easy Riders Raging Bulls as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When the low-budget biker movie Easy Rider shocked Hollywood with its success in 1969, a new Hollywood era was born. This was an age when talented young filmmakers such as Scorsese, Coppola, and Spielberg, along with a new breed of actors, including De Niro, Pacino, and Nicholson, became the powerful figures who would make such modern classics as The Godfather, Chinatown, Taxi Driver, and Jaws. Easy Riders, Raging Bulls follows the wild ride that was Hollywood in the '70s -- an unabashed celebration of sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll (both onscreen and off) and a climate where innovation and…


Book cover of The Way We Lived Then: Recollections of a Well-Known Name Dropper

Shawn Levy Author Of The Castle on Sunset: Life, Death, Love, Art, and Scandal at Hollywood's Chateau Marmont

From my list on Hollywood glamour and sleaze.

Why am I passionate about this?

Shawn Levy is the author of 11 books of biography and pop culture history, including The Castle on Sunset: Life, Death, Love, Art, and Scandal at Hollywood's Chateau Marmont, Paul Newman: A Life, Rat Pack Confidential, and Ready, Steady, Go! The Smashing Rise and Giddy Fall of Swinging London. He was the longtime film critic of The Oregonian newspaper and KGW-TV in his beloved home city of Portland. He has written a history of the women pioneers of standup comedy which will be published by Doubleday in 2022 and at work on a podcast about the dark connections of politics and show business.

Shawn's book list on Hollywood glamour and sleaze

Shawn Levy Why did Shawn love this book?

Before he became a writer of potboiler novels and true-crime journalism, Dominick Dunne was a film and television producer and a social butterfly who also happened also to be an avid amateur photographer. This memoir of his Hollywood days, which resulted in a crash-and-burn from which he emerged as a writer, is filled with intimate, candid images of such friends (not all faithful) as Jane Fonda, Elizabeth Taylor, Natalie Wood, Paul Newman, and Frank Sinatra, as well, of course, as Dunne and his family. There are dreamy and even eye-popping tales throughout, and if you're at all familiar with Dunne's books or magazine writing, you'll marvel at how so much of it so neatly dovetails with the life he actually lived and, thankfully, captured on film and in these frank and candid pages.

By Dominick Dunne,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Way We Lived Then as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Mesmerizing, revelatory text combines with more than two hundred photographs -- most of them taken by the author -- in a startling illustrated memoir that will both astonish and move you.

When Dominick Dunne lived and worked in Hollywood, he had it all: a beautiful family, a glamorous career, and the friendship of the talented and powerful. He also had a camera and loved to take pictures. These photographs, which Dunne carefully preserved in more than a dozen leatherbound scrapbooks -- along with invitations, telegrams, personal notes, and other memorabilia -- record the parties, the glittering receptions, the society weddings,…


Book cover of A Private View

Glenn Frankel Author Of Shooting Midnight Cowboy: Art, Sex, Loneliness, Liberation, and the Making of a Dark Classic

From my list on Hollywood memoirs that tell the truth.

Why am I passionate about this?

I worked for 27 years at The Washington Post, where I won a Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting. But when I returned home in 2006, I wanted to write about my own country, and what could be more American than the movies? They’re a wonderful looking glass into the past, and my books explore the making of an iconic movie and the historical era in which it was created. My recent ones have recounted the making of The Searchers, starring John Wayne, and High Noon, the Gary Cooper classic and its connection to the Hollywood blacklist, a time of vicious conflict eerily similar to our own troubled era.

Glenn's book list on Hollywood memoirs that tell the truth

Glenn Frankel Why did Glenn love this book?

The dutiful daughter of one studio mogul and devoted wife of another, Irene Selznick was Hollywood royalty throughout the 1920s to 40s, the Golden Age of American cinema. Her father, the tyrannical Louis B. Mayer, steered MGM, Hollywood’s most successful studio, discovered Greta Garbo and victimized Judy Garland. Her husband, David O. Selznick made the first A Star Is Born and Gone with the Wind before self-destructing from drugs and megalomania. Irene escaped the shadow of overpowering men to become the respected Broadway producer of A Streetcar Named Desire, a woman to be reckoned with and—in this powerful memoir—a first-class storyteller.

By Irene Mayer Selznick,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Private View as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Irene Mayer came to Hollywood when she was ten. Her childhood was populated with legendary names as her father, Louis B., practically created the movie industry. But life at the Mayers' was not lived in the typical Hollywood style. They believed in family, in strict hours, tiny allowances, no boys, no going away to college, and no socializing with actors. She didn't marry an actor. She married David O. Selznick, a wildly energized, and ambitious man who would go on to make some of the greatest movies Hollywood would ever see. Irene eventually left him, and Hollywood, for New York…


Book cover of Radiance

Tyler Schwanke Author Of Breaking In

From my list on movie lovers.

Why am I passionate about this?

Tyler Schwanke is a writer and a filmmaker. He holds an MFA from Hamline University, and his short stories have been widely published in online journals and literary magazines, including Chaotic Merge, Havik, and Fiction Southeast. He is also a graduate of the New York Film Academy and Minnesota State University Moorhead, where he was awarded a Minnesota Film and TV Grant. Several of his award-winning short films have played at festivals across the country. Tyler lives in the Minneapolis with his wife and their dog. Breaking In is his debut novel.

Tyler's book list on movie lovers

Tyler Schwanke Why did Tyler love this book?

A sci-fi space opera that’s told like a documentary film.

This was the first book (but certainly not the last) that ever made me jealous I didn’t write, and inspired countless hours of me trying to duplicate.

Set in an alternate 1986 where silent films still reign and using various forms (reality tv, movie, celebrity rags, audio transcripts) this is a genre-bending collective gorgeously told and seriously underread. 

By Catherynne M. Valente, Catherynne M. Valente,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Radiance as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Severin Unck is the headstrong young daughter of a world famous film director. She has inherited her father's love of the big screen but not his exuberant gothic style of filmmaking. Instead, Severin makes documentaries, artful and passionate and even rather brave - for she is a realist in a fantastic alternate universe, in which Hollywood occupies the moon, Mars is rife with lawless saloons, and the solar system contains all manner of creatures, cults and colonies. For Severin's latest project she leads her crew to the watery planet of Venus to investigate the disappearance of a diving colony there.…


Book cover of A Life

Glenn Frankel Author Of Shooting Midnight Cowboy: Art, Sex, Loneliness, Liberation, and the Making of a Dark Classic

From my list on Hollywood memoirs that tell the truth.

Why am I passionate about this?

I worked for 27 years at The Washington Post, where I won a Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting. But when I returned home in 2006, I wanted to write about my own country, and what could be more American than the movies? They’re a wonderful looking glass into the past, and my books explore the making of an iconic movie and the historical era in which it was created. My recent ones have recounted the making of The Searchers, starring John Wayne, and High Noon, the Gary Cooper classic and its connection to the Hollywood blacklist, a time of vicious conflict eerily similar to our own troubled era.

Glenn's book list on Hollywood memoirs that tell the truth

Glenn Frankel Why did Glenn love this book?

Okay, it’s more of an autobiography than a memoir, but Kazan’s 826-page volcano is the most explosive and mesmerizing show-business book I’ve ever plunged into. From his salad days as a struggling actor with New York’s Group Theatre to his conquest of Broadway as the hottest, most pugnacious stage director of the mid-20th century (Streetcar Named Desire, Death of a Salesman, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof), to his Oscar-winning films (Streetcar, Gentleman’s Agreement, On the Waterfront), Kazan vividly recounts his triumphs, missteps and misdeeds, his mistreatment of his wife and many lovers, and his betrayal of former friends and comrades, in a voice overflowing with self-laceration and self-justification. With a supporting cast that includes Tennessee Williams, Vivien Leigh, Arthur Miller, Marilyn Monroe, Marlon Brando, and James Dean.

By Elia Kazan,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Life as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Elia Kazan's varied life and career is related here in his autobiography. He reveals his working relationships with his many collabourators, including Harold Clurman, Lee Strasberg, Clifford Odets, Arthur Miller, Tennessee Williams, Marilyn Monroe, Marlon Brando, James Dean, John Steinbeck and Darryl Zanuck, and describes his directing "style" as he sees it, in terms of position, movement, pace, rhythm and his own limitations. Kazan also retraces his own decision to inform for the House Un-American Activities Committee, illuminating much of what may be obscured in McCarthy literature.


Book cover of Blue Movie

Nathan Abrams Author Of Kubrick: An Odyssey

From my list on fiction and nonfiction books about movie directors.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was old (or young) enough to have only seen two Kubrick films in the cinema: Full Metal Jacket and Eyes Wide Shut. I began teaching film studies and Hollywood in 1998, and I have been teaching and researching Kubrick intensively since 2007, visiting his archive in London on numerous occasions. At one point, I held the record for the researcher who had spent the most hours in the Archive. I also met Christiane and Jan and spoke to many others who knew and worked with Kubrick. Having been familiar with Robert Kolker’s work, it became clear that collaborating with an international authority on film was a necessity as well as a pleasure.

Nathan's book list on fiction and nonfiction books about movie directors

Nathan Abrams Why did Nathan love this book?

This novel follows a famous Hollywood director called Boris Adrian but known as "King B" who is shooting a big-budget arthouse porn film.

The auteur was allegedly based on Kubrick, with whom Southern collaborated on Dr. Strangelove, and the book is dedicated to "the great Stanley K" whom Southern alleges wanted to make such a film. As Southern also had screenwriting credits for Easy Rider and Casino Royale, it offers a first-hand account, albeit fictionalized, of someone who worked with the director but also with others in Hollywood.

By Terry Southern,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Blue Movie as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

With a new introduction by Marianne Faithfull

“Terry Southern writes a mean, coolly deliberate, and murderous prose.” ―Norman Mailer

King B., an Oscar-winning director, is now determined to shoot the dirtiest and most expensive X-rated movie ever made. Displaced to Liechtenstein (which, in order to boost tourism, has negotiated the exclusive rights to show the film for ten years) and fueled by suspiciously rejuvenating vitamin B-12 injections, the set of The Faces of Love is fraught with monstrous egos and enormous libidos ― the kind of situation that could only come from the imagination of the irrepressible Terry Southern.


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