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Will the Force be with Oakland?

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With trouble in the Windy City, will George Lucas consider Oakland as a museum site?

In 2014, filmmaker George Lucas wanted to build what he then called the Lucas Cultural Arts Museum—an institution that would showcase memorabilia and illustrations from his storied career—at a location across from Crissy Field, but he was rebuffed by the Presidio Trust and decided to move the project to a lakeside location in Chicago. Now that there's trouble in Windy City, he's looking for a new site and Oakland is reportedly raising a hand.

Our sister site, Curbed Chicago, said it best when editor A.J. LaTrace wrote that the battle between the museum (now dubbed the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art) and an organization called Friends of the Parks is beginning to resemble "an epic story from a Lucas film."

The short back story: The Friends of the Parks group says the museum doesn't comply with state doctrine because it benefits a private party and that it will harm the lakefront, and they filed a lawsuit that's halted construction. The city says that the legal action could spell the loss of a revenue generator for the area and has asked a judge to let construction go forward (a ruling is expected on April 21). Representatives for George Lucas say it's time to consider other cities.

And now, according to the San Francisco Business Times, Oakland is saying "pick me!" Erica Terry Derryck, a spokesperson for Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, told the SFBT: "If plans for a museum in Chicago do not come to fruition, we'd be thrilled to explore the possibility of this exciting project coming to life in Oakland." The city is joining with the Bay Area Council to reach out to Lucas.

Whether Lucas is also thrilled about an East Bay location is unclear.