Today Star Wars is one of the most lucrative entertainment franchises in the entire world. For many die-hard fans, the franchise was at its best when it was still being helmed by George Lucas. In an interview with author Paul Duncan, Lucas explained that his movies, particularly Attack of the Clones, follow a specific format of adventure films that audiences often fail to take into account. He does acknowledge that some of the dialogue in the Prequel trilogy, ""is pretty corny." Especially when addressing some of Hayden Chrstensen's lines ito Padme. But he goes further and explains why these lines exist like this in the first place.
"[Episode II] is presented very honestly, it isn't tongue-in-cheek at all, and it's played to the hilt. But it is consistent, not only with the rest of the movie, but with the overall Star Wars style. Most people don't understand the style of Star Wars. They don't get that there's an underlying motif that is very much like a 1930s Western or Saturday matinee serial. It's in the more romantic period of making movies and adventure films. And this film is even more of a melodrama than the others."
Lucas' explanation came in response to a particularly notorious scene in Episode II, where Anakin tells Padme "I am haunted by the kiss that you should never have given me." That bit of dialogue is often accused of being corny and unrealistic. But Lucas contends he was simply being faithful to the overall tone of Star Wars, which was modeled after old-school Westerns and soap opera dramas, where such dialogs were par for the course.
The truth is, the style of filmmaking that George Lucas is referring to, with dramatic dialogs and overly-earnest performances, went out of style in Hollywood decades ago. Perhaps that is why Lucas' Star Wars prequel trilogy feels somewhat behind their times. But while the prequels were not greeted as warmly by critics, Lucas could not be accused of having phoned in the movies, as he explained how much time he spent with his cast rehearsing each scene before the cameras began rolling.
"There's a bit more soap opera in this one than there has been in the past. So setting the scenes up and staging them was more complex than it usually is. Normally, we would have rehearsals at the beginning of the film. We would read through and then rehearse certain scenes that were tricky. Then, we would work out staging on the set as we were shooting each day, and do the rehearsal as we shot it. This one, because there was a lot more complex staging, I would take the week's work and on the previous Saturday, I would spend all day rehearsing with the actors and the cameraman, and we would stage the scene the scene and rehearse it a couple times. So for the rest of the week, we would have a very clear vision of what we were doing, and didn't have to spend time on the set trying to figure things out."
Ironically, after years of criticism of the prequel trilogy, the most successful entry in the Star Wars series in recent times is The Mandalorian, which closely hews to Lucas' original vision for his franchise as a "Western episodic drama". That must be a vindication of sorts for the filmmaker. This news originated at Syfy.com.