[[caption-width-right:325:Lawrence Kasdan, circa 2003]]

Lawrence Edward Kasdan (born January 14, 1949) is a well-known film screenwriter and director.

He originally trained to be a teacher, but when he couldn’t get hired as such, he became an advertising copywriter. He hated the job, but it didn’t affect his performance as the Clio Award he won indicates.

He finally moved to Hollywood and finally got into movies when his script for ''Film/TheBodyguard'' was finally bought after 36 rejections. It remained in DevelopmentHell until 1992, when it was made into a very successful vehicle for Music/WhitneyHouston and Creator/KevinCostner.

However, he got his big break when he sold his script for ''Continental Divide'' to Creator/StevenSpielberg. Spielberg’s friend and colleague Creator/GeorgeLucas took notice, hiring him to write the screenplay for ''Film/RaidersOfTheLostArk'' and then later on to finish the screenplay for ''Film/TheEmpireStrikesBack'' and help write ''Film/ReturnOfTheJedi''. His impact on the films was hugely helpful, insofar as it replaced Lucas’ infamously clunky dialogue for smoothly believable, even poetic when called for, lines. Basically, if the best lines spoken weren’t [[ThrowItIn improvised by the actors]], Kasdan wrote them.

Here’s an example of Kasdan’s skill at work with one of Yoda’s most profound lines:
* Lucas’ version: “Not material are we. Luminous beings are we, tied together by the Force. Yes. There are two of you … your body and your energy.”
* Kasdan’s version: “Luminous beings are we [pinches Luke’s skin], not this crude matter.”

Eventually, he moved on to doing his own films like ''Film/TheBigChill'', ''Film/GrandCanyon'', and ''Film/TheAccidentalTourist'', which got UsefulNotes/AcademyAward nominations. He most often works with Creator/KevinKline for his films.

Nowadays, his stature as a big part of the talent that made ''Franchise/StarWars'' so great has grown so much that the {{fandom}} celebrated when it became known that he would help write ''Episode VII: Film/TheForceAwakens''.

!!Films written and/or directed:
* ''Franchise/StarWars'':
** ''Film/TheEmpireStrikesBack'' (1980) (screenplay co-writer)
** ''Film/ReturnOfTheJedi'' (1983) (screenplay co-writer)
** ''Film/TheForceAwakens'' (2015) (co-writer)
** ''Film/{{Solo}}'' (2018) (co-writer)
* ''Film/BodyHeat'' (1981) (writer and director)
* ''Continental Divide'' (1981) (writer)
* ''Film/RaidersOfTheLostArk'' (1981) (screenplay co-writer)
* ''Film/TheBigChill'' (1983) (co-writer and director)
* ''Film/{{Silverado}}'' (1985) (co-writer and director)
* ''Film/TheAccidentalTourist'' (1988) (screenplay co-adapter and director)
* ''Film/ILoveYouToDeath'' (1990) (director)
* ''Film/GrandCanyon'' (1991) (co-writer and director)
* ''Film/TheBodyguard'' (1992) (writer)
* ''Wyatt Earp'' (1994) (co-writer and director)
* ''Film/FrenchKiss'' (1995) (director)
* ''Film/{{Mumford}}'' (1999) (writer and director)
* ''Literature/{{Dreamcatcher}}'' (2003) (screenplay co-adapter and director)
* ''Darling Companion'' (2012) (co-writer and director)