It begins with: "Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Seek what they sought." -- Basho, 17th Century Japanese poet.
The above website discusses the following influences for Star Wars: Flash Gordon, Kurosawa films, Lord of the Rings, Dune, 2001 Space Odyssey, Forbidden Planet, Ben-Hur as well as The Wizard of Oz.
Side Note: George Lucas had the nickname of 'Luke' in high school. [Luke + s = Lucas] Thus, he named the hero of his tale, Luke. [Luke Skywalker] Personally, I saw Han Solo as the hero. But, actually, Han Solo is referred to as a 'Natural Leader'. So a logical conclusion, at least my conclusion, is: A hero does not necessarily need to be a leader, but could quite possibly be one of the more quiet and mild-mannered members of a group. (Or may not be a member of any group at all.) Situations inspire heroic deeds.
I have heard it said many times that there is no "I" in TEAM. But teams do have leaders and every member of a team is capable of being a hero. Be happy in your individuality.
Anyway, there's lots of interesting stuff at http://www.moongadget.com/origins/