Penniless Prowse?

I just read an article that outlined the paycheques that some of the actors from the original Trilogy received for being in the films.

Surprisingly I found out that Dave Prowse, who played the role of Darth Vader in A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, wasn’t even paid at all! This was allegedly due to due to “extremely ‘creative’ Hollywood accounting”.  This means he got letters from Lucasfilm stating that the movies never made any money and therefore they had nothing for him.

prowseNow, I’m not one to normally comment on these types of articles, but I have to say this…Bullshit!  I simply don’t believe that Dave Prowse was dumb enough to suit up for all three films and not get paid.  After A New Hope was filmed, you have to believe that in order for him to reprise his role, he would have put his foot down and simply stated that he’s not working for free.

Okay, yes they could have threatened to replace him, but I’m certain that by now he would have said something to the media regarding not being paid.  Interestingly enough he doesn’t even mention it on his official website either.

Personally, Dave, I would have done it for free, but then that’s just an extreme fan talking.  I hope you did get paid though! May the Force be with You!

This ain’t the blaster that killed Greedo

It’s up fosolo-blaster-480wr sale if you want it….but you’ll have to shell out at least $200,000 USD in order to make it a part of your collection. Just remember that because of it’s selling price doesn’t mean it actually shoots lasers, although that would be kinda cool!!!

Han Solo’s DL-44 Blaster is up for auction on Dec.21, 2013.  Apparently it’s the one used in Episode V The Empire Strikes Back and Episode VI Return of the Jedi.  They are saying it’s not the same prop gun that blasted poor Greedo in the Cantina in Episode IV A New Hope. Clearly this is a weapon that can aim itself! Rumour has it that it may also be the same prop gun that Luke Skywalker uses in Episode V The Empire Strikes Back.

Regardless, it’s a piece of movie history that will most likely go for a lot more than the starting price… I wonder if Harrison Ford might bid on it or maybe that’s why it’s not the original DL-44 from A New Hope…maybe he kept that one…hmmm maybe someone should ask him!

JJ Abrams is going to make a really good Star Wars film

Quoting JJ Abrams:

Opening_crawl“When I was a kid and saw Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (1977) for the first time it blew my mind and around the same time I had friends who were huge fans of Star Trek and I don’t know if I was smart enough to get it, or patient enough. What I loved about Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (1977) was the visceral energy of it, the clarity of it, the kind of innocence and big heart of it. Star Trek always felt a little bit more sophisticated and philosophical, debating moral dilemmas and things that were theoretically interesting, but for some reason I couldn’t get on board. It really took working with all these guys and actually working on Star Trek for me to fall in love with that.”

“Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (1977) is probably the most influential film of my generation. It’s the personification of good and evil and the way it opened up the world to space adventure, the way westerns had to our parents’ generations, left an indelible imprint. So, in a way, everything that any of us does is somehow directly or indirectly affected by the experience of seeing those first three films.”

“Looking back on my childhood, I have a list of things that are massively important to me. Without question, ‘Star Wars’ was on the list, and ‘Star Trek’ was not.”

This sounds like very good news for Star Wars fans.  Mr. Abrams was influenced by Star Wars as a kid and I can imagine that this endeavor into directing Episode VII is going to be his crowning achievement.  I realize he doesn’t have a lot of experience as a director (mostly producing and writing) but then neither did George Lucas before he directed Star Wars Episode IV – A New Hope. Let’s face it, George Lucas is a fantastic writer and producer but when you look at Star Wars Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back, true fans realize the greatest of all the films wasn’t  directed by George Lucas.

Star Wars on Blu-Ray: Is High Definition too much?

I was recently gifted the re-release of the complete Star Wars Saga on Blu-ray disc.

First off let me say that this is probably my 4th version of the Saga (from VHS through DVD to Blu-ray) and I am always thrilled to watch it all over again.

Having said this I am left wondering if HD (High Definition) is really the right format for the Star Wars films.  Personally I believe some things are best left alone.  Although I strongly agree that a digital overhaul of the Saga was a necessity (The Special Edition and Episodes I thru III), I don’t believe HD has done it justice.

I know, you must be thinking I’m crazy.  HD is “da bomb” these days and most films look incredible in this format.  I have to say though the images in certain scenes look almost too “crystal clear”.  One scene in particular is in The Empire Strikes Back.  It’s the scene where the Imperial Star Destroyers are being overshadowed by Vader’s massive Super Star Destroyer.  In my opinion, the ships look like they are just little models on a starry backdrop because the image detail is, well,  too detailed!!!.

Sometimes using a filter or a “soft focus” can make things look more appealing and believable.  Many directors use this method for obvious reasons.  HD certainly takes some of that away. The hard edges in some scenes that use matte paintings (paintings on glass) for effects shots are simply downright harsh.

All in all it’s still worth watching again, if not for all the new goodies packaged with the release,  but I’ll still be keeping my other copies…just in case I want to see it as I remember it…. a long time ago in a theatre far far away.

65 novels and counting

I just finished reading the last novel in the Star Wars:Legacy of The Force series.  This is the 65th Star Wars fiction novel that I’ve read to date. All of them, excluding Splinter of the Mind;s Eye (see one of my earlier posts), are about the continuing adventures of the core group of characters from Star Wars: A New Hope.

It all started back in 1991.  Timothy Zahn had just published a trilogy of books, the first one titled “Heir to the Empire”.  Picking up where the original movie trilogy left off, it began an explosion of Expanded Universe media. Following these works, Star Wars novels and story collections by authors such as Kevin J. Anderson and Michael A. Stackpole were released, reinvigorating the Star Wars Franchise that had been largely dormant for years.

Since it’s release, George Lucas decided that if more were to be published, the novels would have to maintain continuity and that characters from one story could not be altered to satisfy a different story.  The novels also started a timeline which grew from what is referred to as After Battle of Yavin (ABY).  The books in the Expanded Universe would indicate how long after ABY the story occurred.

To date they have written stories that are set 138 years after the Battle of Yavin (the destruction of the first Death Star) and a couple of thousand years before it (origins of the Sith and the Jedi).  Although I haven’t gotten to the point where I’m reading about Luke Skywalkers’ descendants,  I have gotten far enough along in the character development to see Luke as an aged (he’s around 62 years old) Jedi Grand Master.

It wasn’t so long ago that he was just a starry-eyed farm boy from Tatooine who dreamt of adventure and excitement in a Galaxy far, far away,…

Star Wars Online

I didn’t realize this and it may be an anomaly.  I was looking on YouTube for a copy of the original TV trailer for Star Wars Episode IV.  When I got there, I’m not sure what I keyed into the search function but I ended up finding full versions of the all the films!

Usually they are split into many parts to avoid any “imperial entanglements” but I found all six films in their entirety and in pretty good viewing resolution.

I’m not going to provide a link as I don’t want to end up in cell block AA-23 but if you go to YouTube you’ll be able to watch any of the movies you may have missed.

It’s also a great place to look at homemade Star Wars movies from fans around the globe.  Some of the lightsaber duels are incredibly well put together for a bunch of amateurs.  Just do a search for lightsaber duels on YouTube.

A Long Time Ago…

Me and the gang dressed up as our favorite Star Wars characters

Click for larger image

A Long Time Ago (for me anyway) in a city far far away (at least from where I am now)… Star Wars: A Civic Parade!

Me, my brother and some friends of mine were hyped.  We had been asked if we would be interested in taking place in a Thanksgiving Parade.  My Mom was the one who actually suggested it as well as the theme…why not go as your favorite Star Wars characters?

Little did she realize that she would be doing most of the work. She ended up making most of the items for the costumes.  All in all I think she did a pretty good job considering what she had to work with.

We went as the core group of Star Wars Characters from A New Hope, minus Chewbacca.  Me as Luke, my brother as Obi-Wan, and my best friend as Han Solo.  Princess Leia was played by a friend of the family…her costume was done by her mother.

The lightsabers of the time were non-existent so we had to use plastic glow in the dark He-Man type swords.  I did however clip a flashlight to my utility belt because it kind of looked like a lightsaber.

We had loads of fun.  We got tons of compliments and we were all very impressed with ourselves…no other entry in the parade was themed Star Wars.  We were unique! We were outstanding.  We were freezing!!

The pics shown here were taken in October of 1978.  It was a Civic parade hosted by the City of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

Okay I’ll be the first to admit it was nothing huge, but technically speaking we were way before our time.  Star Wars didn’t participate in any decent parades until 2007 (although with a lot more to show…).   Rose Parade features ‘Star Wars’ tribute