Why George Lucas Says Don’t Go to Film School

By Kevin on December 15, 2010 in Success

Former Disney CEO, Michael Eisner, wrote a fascinating , wide ranging article for Wall Street Journal magazine recently. This passage jumped out at me:

When my son wanted to go to undergraduate film school, I called George Lucas, who told him: Don’t go. Learning to make a movie is like learning to drive. Anybody can learn to drive. It’s where you drive that counts.

That says so much. Master film makers saying don’t go to film school. I can remember Dan Rather once telling students in journalism school telling them to quit and study history or something else instead.

I often write about the power of stories, and the skill of being a good story teller, and Eisner stresses this point:

I would rather you understand what makes a good narrative. To find people who can make you laugh or cry or smile or get upset or learn something about yourself. Those people are rare. They are rarer, frankly, than the others. We always talk about the lack of engineers in America. I would say we lead in what is most important to create all this, which is the education system for liberal-arts students. To me, that’s key.

There is nothing wrong with studying science or being a scientist, or being an engineer, or any profession. But understanding stories and emotional triggers will help you to succeed regardless of what you do. It’s what can give you the edge over others in your career, and will help to ensure that you live happily ever after.


Kevin Kruse is a NY Times bestselling author and keynote speaker. Get more success and tips from his newsletter at kevinkruse.com and check out keynote video clips. His new book, Employee Engagement 2.0, teaches managers how to turn apathetic groups into emotionally committed teams.

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