Flashback: George Lucas Sues to Keep 'Star Wars' Name Off Reagan Missile Defense Plan

Flashback: George Lucas Sues to Keep 'Star Wars' Name Off Reagan Missile Defense Plan

Lucasfilm officials rushed to President Barack Obama’s side earlier this week after the president committed the ultimate geek gaffe–he confused Star Wars with Star Trek.

It’s hardly a surprise to see a part of Hollywood playing defense for the administration or its leader.

The company, which founder George Lucas recently sold to Disney for roughly $4 billion, wasn’t always so willing to speak out on the White House’s behalf.

An Associated Press news item, dated Nov. 13, 1985, reports Lucas filing suit to keep the Star Wars name off of President Ronald Reagan’s signature defense initiative.

The filmmaker “charged trademark infringement, unfair trade practices and appropriating the good will and reputation of Lucasfilm” against a marketing effort to brand the plan with the Star Wars moniker, the AP report says. The press at the time routinely dubbed Reagan’s plan the Star Wars initiative.

One wonders if Team Lucas would have been in such a litigious mood had a Democratic leader proposed the plan.

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