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Lucas: I'll Cover Expense Of Lakefront Museum -- 'Everything'

(CBS) – Filmmaker and "Star Wars" mastermind George Lucas on Friday promised that the forthcoming lakefront museum dedicated to his art collection will be privately financed.

The estimated $300 million project will rise in a parking lot between Soldier Field and McCormick Place, as soon as 2018.

CBS 2's Dorothy Tucker reports.

CBS This Morning anchor Charlie Rose asking questions at Chicago Ideas Week -- seeking answers Chicagoans have wanted to hear for months.

Lucas explained that he wanted to share his love of art with the world and thought the perfect venue was a museum.

"I've been collecting art ever since I was in college," a relaxed Lucas, 70, said during the interview at Cadillac Palace Theatre in the Loop. "I realized there really was no showcase for this sort work."

Why Chicago? Rose asked.

"I happen to be married to a woman who was born and raised in Chicago," Lucas said, referring to businesswoman Mellody Hobson.

Lucas made no apology for the influence of his wife, but he admitted his first choice was his home town of San Francisco. The City by the Bay, however, wouldn't let him build his dream project in a park, he said.

Now, the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art is slated to open on the Chicago lakefront. It will have all the "Star Wars" memorabilia, costumes, movie sets and props – and an avant-garde and "organic" design, Lucas said.

Lucas, a billionaire, said he will finance the museum and the endowment to maintain it.

"I pay for the whole thing – and the endowment, and everything," Lucas said as audience members applauded.

"You can afford a museum?" Rose asked.

"Yeah, I can," the filmmaker said.

He says the museum will also include a theater and will feature foreign films, independent films, lectures and workshops.

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