More sad news to report this morning as Empire Strikes Back director Irvin Kershner has died at the age of 87 in Los Angeles. Although the original Star Wars film, A New Hope, will always be my favorite, The Empire Strikes Back is probably the best film in the saga from both a technical and an emotional standpoint. George Lucas and Kershner famously clashed over the tone and pacing of the film, and it can be argued that this disagreement led to George hiring a more easily manipulated director to helm the safer and less satisfying Return of the Jedi. Kershner also directed Robocop 2, and Sean Connery’s mid 80’s return to Bond in Never Say Never Again.


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