Star Wars: Episode I—The Phantom Menace 3D opens in theaters today, and while all of its advertising has focused on (A) podracing and (B) Darth Maul, that didn't fool our critic one bit. But George Lucas going out and doing interviews right around the same time as Episode I's rerelease might not have been the best idea—since try as he might, he kind of can't help but say stuff like this:
The controversy over who shot first, Greedo or Han Solo, in Episode IV, what I did was try to clean up the confusion, but obviously it upset people because they wanted Solo [who seemed to be the one who shot first in the original] to be a cold-blooded killer, but he actually isn’t. It had been done in all close-ups and it was confusing about who did what to whom. I put a little wider shot in there that made it clear that Greedo is the one who shot first, but everyone wanted to think that Han shot first, because they wanted to think that he actually just gunned him down. (Via.)
To be fair, Lucas prefaced that obviously false statement with something very true ("Well, it’s not a religious event. I hate to tell people that. It’s a movie, just a movie"), but man: blackmailing fans into seeing Episode I again and digging up the whole Han Shot First fanboy freakout? Look, I'm just throwing this out there, but maybe not the best publicity move.