1971: George Lucas founds company as he releases "THX 1138," his first feature film. 1975: Special-effects studio Industrial Light & Magic and sound-effects company Sprocket Systems, which later becomes Skywalker Sound, founded. 1977: "Star Wars," the first film in a blockbuster trilogy, released. 1978: Lucas purchases 2,500-acre ranch in Marin that later becomes Skywalker Ranch, home of some of Lucasfilm's production studios. 1979: Lucas hires Ed Catmull to head Lucasfilm's new computer division, which later creates the Pixar Image Computer. 1982: New video game division, Lucasfilm Games, later renamed LucasArts, launched. 1983: THX division, focusing on in-theater sound, founded. 1984: Computer division, using new Pixar Image Computer, releases first short film, which featured contributions from John Lasseter. 1985: Lucasfilm moves to Skywalker Ranch. 1986: Lucas sells Pixar to Steve Jobs. 1997: Original "Star Wars" trilogy re-released.
LucasFilm, the San Francisco movie company founded by "Star Wars" creator George Lucas and that Disney on Tuesday agreed to buy, has a long and storied history.
Source: Lucasfilm, Pixar, staff research