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Richard "Rick" McCallum
Born June 1, 1952
Heidelberg, Germany

Richard "Rick" McCallum (born June 1, 1952) is a film producer mostly known for his work on the Star Wars prequel trilogy, special editions as well as The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles. His mother Patricia McCallum has been married to his stepfather, actor Michael York, since 1968.

Early career

McCallum's producing career began with Pennies from Heaven (1981) for director Herbert Ross and writer Dennis Potter. During the 1980s, he went on to produce movies with renowned filmmakers including David Hare (Strapless); Neil Simon (I Ought to Be in Pictures); and Harvey Fierstein, whose HBO film On Tidy Endings received four CableACE Awards.

McCallum produced the music video Undercover for the Rolling Stones, which MTV named the Best Video of the Decade. McCallum established a close working relationship with English director Nicolas Roeg, and acted as producer on Roeg's films Castaway and Track 29.

Collaboration with George Lucas

In 1986, McCallum re-teamed with Potter, serving as executive producer on the landmark BBC-TV series The Singing Detective. They worked together again in 1989 for the BBC production of Blackeyes. Their successful collaboration also produced Dreamchild, an unusual exploration by Potter of the creation of Alice in Wonderland, which won three BAFTA awards. It was on the set of Dreamchild that McCallum met Star Wars creator George Lucas.

Several years after their first meeting, Lucas was preparing his first weekly live-action television program, The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, and he turned to McCallum to produce the ambitious series, which was to be shot in 35 countries. With a unique perspective on the eventful early life of Indiana Jones – including its cinematic qualities, an emphasis on storytelling and characters, and an enticing promise of new adventures each week – McCallum attracted a stellar list of writers and actors to the creative ranks of the series. Among the directors with whom McCallum worked on the series were Bille August, Nicolas Roeg, David Hare, Mike Newell, Deepa Mehta, Terry Jones, Simon Wincer, and Carl Shultz. During its run, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences honored Young Indiana Jones with 11 Emmy Awards and 25 nominations. The series debuted on DVD in 2007, and McCallum served as executive producer on a series of 94 acclaimed documentaries that accompany the episodes and illuminate the real-life history behind their stories.

When Young Indiana Jones wrapped, McCallum produced Radioland Murders (1994), for which Lucas served as executive producer. During its production, Lucas confided to McCallum the plans for three new Star Wars movies. To test the nascent digital technology just then becoming available, McCallum produced revised versions of Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi – each of which proved remarkably successful at the box office and proved that the once-impossible visual feats needed for Lucas's next movies were indeed possible. Assembling the teams that worked both in front of and behind the cameras, McCallum produced the next three films, which Lucas wrote and directed: Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace (1999), Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones (2002) and Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith (2005). Two of the prequels are among the 10 most-successful movies in history. Together, the Star Wars films McCallum has produced have grossed more than $3 billion worldwide. Recognizing his contributions to the movies, in 1999, CinemaExpo named McCallum its Producer of the Year.

The Star Wars prequels also ushered in a new era of digital filmmaking, and McCallum played the leading role in its development. He oversaw a team of creative and technical professionals that developed and created the industry's first all-digital production pipeline, allowing every aspect of movie production – from production, to post-production, to distribution – to take place digitally. In 2000, Attack of the Clones became the first movie with all-digital principal photography, editing, visual and sound effects, exhibition and distribution.

McCallum is currently in pre-production on Red Tails, an action-adventure that pays tribute to the spirit of World War II's Tuskegee Airmen, and on which Lucas will act as executive producer; and on a live-action television series set in the Star Wars galaxy.

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