17 September 2007

Star Wars (and Vimes) at 30 part 1

I haven't posted all weekend because I spent the weekend celebrating my best buddy's birthday, so Happy 30th Vimes! As a huge fan of Star Wars fan we bought him tickets to the exhibition at County Hall in London (Star Wars is also 30 years old). Of course, me, Sally and a load of our mutual friends had to accompany him. Geeks? No, not at all.

And if you are confronted by a Star Wars geek here is the first part in the list of 30 Star Wars facts that only a true geek would know:

    Vimes with his new master!

  1. The original release, on May 25 1977 was in only 32 cinemas in the United States. No one as confident it would be a hit.

  2. The opening crawler for the original Star Wars was co-written by director Brian DePalma.

  3. The infamous stormtrooper head bang blooper had a "clunk" sound inserted in the Special Edition re-release.

  4. A choice was given to the two over-sized actors in which role they wanted to play. Peter Mayhew chose Chewbacca because he wanted to play a bad guy. David Prowse gave the opposite reason for chosing to play Darth Vader.

  5. The first ever shot created by Industrial Light and Magic, the company George Lucus set up to achieve the special effects that had never been attempted before, was the escape pod being jettisoned from Princess Leia's ship at the beginning of the first film.

  6. The shot where Luke and Leia swing to safety whilst trying to escape the Death Star was done by the actors themselves, rather than stunt doubles. Although a number of takes were shot it was the first attempt that was used.

  7. As in Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, Lucas was set to use existing classical music to score the film until his friend Steven Speilberg introduced him to composer John Williams. As the film was set in a galaxy far far away, Lucas thought it would be better to have an original score which could give emotional cues in an unfamiliar setting.

  8. In early drafts Luke Skywalker was at different points: female, a dwarf and called Luke Starkiller. Han was to be an alien, Jabba the Hutt to be a humanoid and wookees were going to be called jawas. R2-D2 was called A-2 and C3-PO was called C-3.

  9. George Lucas had arguments with cleaners in the studio because they kept polishing the set floors which Lucas wanted to have a grimy "lived-in" look.

  10. TIE, X-Wing and Y-Wing Fighters are never referred to by name in this Star Wars - A New Hope. Nor is the planet Tatooine (though it is mentioned in the other 5 films). TIE Fighter is an acronym for "Twin Ion Engines".

  11. As well as innovations in visual effects, Star Wars was the first movie to be screened in Dolby Stereo, the first in a run of 18 movies that won Oscars for best sound.

  12. The actor who played Wedge Antilles in the original trilogy, Denis Lawson (mis-spelt Dennis in the original credits) is the uncle of the actor who would go on to play Obi_wan Kenobi in the prequels, Ewan McGregor.

  13. Star Wars was the only film of all six that was nominated for a best picture academy award.

  14. The actor who plays Boba Fett (Jeremy Bulloch) is producer Robert Watt's half brother.

  15. Vader means "father" in Dutch.

DeeDubya tells Boba Fett who's boss

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