itle

May 28, 2017

This is some sensational Hera cosplay from Rebels

Star Wars Rebels Hera Costume play


From time to time In A Far Away Galaxy features some Star Wars cosplay.

We usually only post the best (OK sometimes we feature the worst) and we say things like, this is the best Star Wars cosplay you'll ever see. And usually we mean it.

All that no longer counts as this Hera cosplay from keen player Feyische smashes all comers out of the park!

Hera costume from Star Wars Rebels



If your into your Twi'lek, check out Aayla Secura, the famously first green lady of Star Wars, and this pretty in pink gal!

May 23, 2017

16 insightful facts about the Lucas Prequels

vader fights kenobi revenge of the sith

Star Wars Prequel facts and trivia that any fan needs to know


There's a lot to love about the Star Wars prequels but there's no point trying to convince the naysayeers so let's just get on with the trivia.

Instead, for those of you who love George Lucas' Star Wars backstory, here's 16 cool facts and bits of trivia that you might want to learn about the prequels!

  1. E.T. creatures made a cameo appearance in The Phantom Menace
  2. The Millennium Falcon is spied landing on Coruscant in Revenge of the Sith. This was prior to Lando or Han Solo owning it!
  3. Darth Maul has ten horns on his red head. While Ray Park is famous as playing the Sith Lord, Peter Serafinowicz actually voiced the character. Benicio Del Toro was originally cast to play Darth Maul but he abandoned the role after George Lucas decided to trim Darth Maul's screen time in the film. Benicio del Toro was originally cast but dropped out due to being a pussy. Actually, we take that back as Del Toro is up for a role in Star Wars The Last Jedi.
  4. Hayden Christiansen played Darth Vader in Revenge of the Sith as opposed to David Prowse who previously did the role. Hayden apparently begged Lucas to let him play him. The suit had to be designed to accommodate his smaller stature than Prowse's.
  5. The sound of the hovering battle tanks used by the battle droids in The Phantom Menace was created by running an electric razor around a metal salad bowl and then digitally lowering the pitch.
  6. In Attack of the Clones, Jar Jar Binks stands in for Senator Amidala and puts forth the motion that gives Palpatine supreme powers. This means that Jar Jar, one of the most universally hated characters in the Star Wars films is unwittingly responsible for the fall of the Old Republic and the downfall of the Jedi. 
  7. Revenge of the Sith featured hands being cut off in the film. Anakin loses one to Obi Wan, Mace Windu loses one to Anakin, and Obi-Wan cuts two of General Grievous' hands off and Dooku looses two to Anakin. 
    concept art of gungun army phantom menace
  8. The sound effect when Obi-Wan Kenobi's lightsaber is kicked down the reactor shaft in the climatic battle with Darth Maul, is the same sound effect heard when Luke Skywalker throws his lightsaber away in Return of the Jedi . You know, when he tells the Emperor that he is a Jedi, like his father before him!
  9. George Lucas made his first and only Star Wars cameo in Revenge of the Sith. He dressed as a Pantoran senator, Baron Papanoida. You might not have recognised him as he all dressed up in blue body paint! His daughter also cameoed with him at the same time.
  10. When Anakin is slaughtering the Tusken Raider in Attack of the Clones, Qui-Gon's voice can be heard in the background. This is no accident as Qui-Gon Jinn's Force-Ghost was trying to stop Anakin's rage, but clearly failed.
  11. Every clone trooper in Revenge of the Sith is a creation of CGI. No clone costumes or helmets were manufactured for filming.
  12. The shipping title of Phantom Menace was "The Doll House", Clones was "Cue Ball" and Sith, "The Bridge".
  13. Phantom Menace was the first Star Wars film to be released on DVD.
  14. When Jango Fett gets into his ship after his fight with Obi-Wan in Attack of the Clones, he bangs his head on the open door. This was intentional, and is a reference to a famous goof from the original ANH movie where a cloned Stormtrooper accidentally bangs his head on a door (the clone being the descendant of Jango Fett and having inherited this character trait).
  15. "Phantom Menace" was the name of a villain in the "Flash Gordon" comics. Which shouldn't surprise too many people as George Lucas has often cited Flash Gordon as one of his inspirations for making the original Star Wars.
  16. Revenge of the Sith is the only Star Wars film thus far that does not feature R2D2 in the final shot (and Rogue One if that counts!).

Extra for Experts:

May 17, 2017

How did the design of Darth Vader come about?

deak star killer
Deak vs Vader

Who designed the original Darth Vader costume?


It’s now the stuff of legend that graphic artist RalphMcQuarrie designs have shaped the Star Wars universe and it’s true that he designed the original look of Darth Vader.

The official Star Wars blog shares some insight:

“Perhaps the most popular of Ralph’s paintings to appear in the portfolio, the laser duel, as he referred to it, was completed in February of 1975.

While the portfolio, and nearly everyone who has discussed this painting in the past 35 years, describes it as “Luke versus Vader,” at the time it was painted, the protagonist would have been Deak Starkiller from the second draft screenplay of the film that Ralph was working from.

Deak Starkiller.

That's a long way from Luke Skywalker!

It was because of this scene that Darth Vader came to have the look that he does.

Ralph, concerned that Vader was jumping from ship to ship through the vacuum of space, felt that he would require some sort of breathing apparatus. George agreed, and the look of the masked villain was born.”

Remember at that stage of the production, the script wasn’t the final version of the film that became A New Hope so it’s cool to see how the  development process lead to the design of one of the greatest villains ever devised for film.

So what are the elements of design that made Vader as a whole come about?
  • Creation of the character by George Lucas
  • Design by Ralph McQuarrie
  • Voice by James Earl Jones
  • Acting by David Prowse
  • Breathing sound designed by Ben Burtt
It's also pretty cool to see that the design concept above is not actually Luke Skywalker versus Vader but is actually Deak Starkiller taking on the Sith Lord in a saber duel!

Who is Jonathan Hales and why is his name down as a script writer for Attack of the Clones? What is this business of script doctoring?

attack of the clones production art Obi Wan and Jango

Johnathan Hales and his role scripting Attack of the Clones


Keen eyes may have noticed the name Jonathan Hales as being credited as a script writer on prequel film Attack of the Clones.

While the story was Lucas’, Hales was called into help with the third draft as time was up – filming was due to start and the script was not yet finished – what a mess!

When it was a live site, Secret History of Star Wars noted that Lucas’s first “rough draft - not yet even a proper first draft-was completed in March of 2000 and it was typed up as he was boarding the plane to leave for the studio since production would begin in June.”

Given Lucas was directing and there were pressing production duties, Hales was roped into help write the finer details of the movie. He was a writer for Lucas’s Adventures of Young Indiana Jones and clearly had his trust to get the scripting job done.

Production was well advanced and it was in a position that producer Rick McCallum described to as like trying to build a skyscraper without a foundation. Ultimately the final production script was only able to be read by the actors three days before filming!

So what contribution did Hales make? 


The Secret History surmised that given Lucas also re-wrote Hales' last polish, his contribution to the script was “tenuous”.

This may not be all together fair as Hales did a receive a full screen writer's credit and under the Writers Guild of America screenwriting credit system, a screenwriter must contribute more than 50 percent of an original screenplay or 33 percent of an adaptation to receive credit.

Despite the suggestion of Hale’s work being mere polish (well, if that’s the case, how did he not pick up on the Anakin's sand quote business? Or did he write that line into the script himself?) Lucas must have been happy enough with his contribution to the script as Hales continued to do a fair bit of writing of the Adventures of Young Indiana Jones series.

As an aside, some famous film re-writes or script doctoring moments have gone uncredited including Star War's very own Carrie Fisher as a script doctor for Hook, Sister Act, Lethal Weapon 3 but even Fisher couldn't save Last Action Hero.

In such circumstances, script doctors often deliberately go uncredited, even when they do major work.

But what is this business referred to as script doctoring and why is this discussion suddenly taken place?

To answer the latter, it's an interesting tangent and it gives a good reason to talk more about Star Wars. The first part of the question refers to a script writer taking an existing script and giving it 'another go' with a major restructure or simply tidying up some pacing issues, improving dialogue, fixing scene that wasn't quite working or coming up with a more suitable ending.

Did you ever hear of a script writer called Tom Stoppard?

If you've ever had a cup of tea in his living rooming, you'd have probably noticed his big shiny Oscar gathering a fine layer of dust on the mantle piece. He won it for a delightful film called Shakespeare in Love.

Tom Stoppard also has a massive connection to George Lucas which fans will be amused to consider.

George Lucas once asked Stoppard to do a  final re-write of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade - he did the final version of the film but is uncredited - screen writing credit is shared between 5 people but not Stoppard.

Now if we go cast back to Revenge of the Sith, the film turned out a lot different to what was original script - and we're referring to the fall of Anakin Skywalker to the dark side of the Force here. As the film was pieced together Lucas felt Anakin's turn was too abrupt and not logical.

Lucas did two sets of extra pick up filming to ensure his new story line of Anakin turning was in response to his need to save Padme's life.

So who helped Lucas get this very late piece of story incorporated into Sith?

It must have been Stoppard who is credited as being the uncredited script writer that saved the film. This was a secret let out of the bag by Hayden Christiansen in an interview with Playboy.

So there we have it. A small insight into Hale's work on Attack of the Clones lead us to learning that Carrie Fisher is an actual script doctor herself and that one of the most famous script writers in history helped Lucas with Revenge of the Sith.

Hollywood is clearly a who you know industry!

May 9, 2017

"I know" - is most possibly the most famous ad lib in history but what was the original line?

Original response to Leia's I love you


Han Solo could have made the original “I’ll be back quote!” rather than Arrrnuld.


Princess Leia was subject to one of the most famous ad libs in cinema history - that being Han Solo's response to her declaration of her love for him in The Empire Strikes Back- "I know".

That line and the look on Carrie Fishers' face solidified the love between the two. There would be no more arguing about 'Committees' between them.

Harrison Ford apparently made it up at Irvine Kershner's suggestion.

And it’s probably with good reason that Kershner suggested the line to Han Solo as it looks like Lawrence Kasdan had scripted “just remember that, cause I’ll be back” which on paper just seems a little naff.

But was it really an ad lib?






Half of that line is of course is something that a certain Austrian cyborg sent from the future to the year 1984 said in The Terminator…. If Han had of said it, would the line have become so famous? Possibly not but who cares as “I know” is even better.

Leia got to return the by then then famous line to Han Solo in Jedi during the Battle of Endor.

Update: Harrison Ford did an AMA on Reddit and made some comment:


So this completely contracts the notion above that Kershner came up with the line. The key thing to note is that Ford recognized publicly that it was subject to a collaborative process.

What are the best Star Wars Lego sets to buy?

U Wing Lego Set

Here's our 9 best Star Wars Lego Sets for 2017


There's something magical about Lego and that's probably part of why it has become such an enduring child's toy.

Actually, it's more than a toy, it's a portal to another world where children (and adults who are never too old!) can build anything they wish.

If you want to build characters and spaceships from the world of Star Wars, Lego has you covered. With the return of Star Wars movies in the form of The Force Awakens and Rogue One there has been an opportunity for Lego to have a new look what Lego sets are on offer.

We have in this top list of awesome Star Wars lego sets, a few of the popular sets from the new movies and some of the classics as well! Most of them are under $100 and there's some great value to be had.

Star Wars Rebel Trooper Battle Pack

LEGO Star Wars Rebel Trooper Battle Pack
Build up your Rebel forces and celebrate the 30th anniversary of The Empire Strikes Back with this Hoth base set

When the Empire attacks the hidden Rebel base on the ice planet Hoth, brave Rebel troopers and pilots fight back with their combat speeder with flick-firing missiles. The set oncludes 3 Rebel troopers in cold-weather gear and Rebel pilot Zev Sensca who keen fans may recognise as pilot Rogue Two, the one who finds Han and Luke.
  • Includes 1 Zev Senesca and 3 Rebel troopers with new Hoth helmet minifigures
  • Ice cutter includes 2 flick fire missiles, rotating gun and cargo box
  • Allows the child to reimagine the opening scene of Empire Strikes Back 
  • There are 79 pieces with this pack
A reviewer on Amazon spoke quite highly of the set:

"I purchased this as a gift for a five year old boy. He immediately opened it and tackled building it. He successfully completed it that afternoon. A big plus for Lego toys is the instructions: Lego got its instructions right. That a five year old can assemble this toy on his own, without help, pretty much says it all.

The directions are clear and easy to understand. Their method is to show all of the parts needed for each step, which allows you to collect the parts needed before you start each step."

That's some firm praise! Check out the price on Amazon.

The ship that does the Kessel Run, the Millennium Falcon

falcon escaping death star lego set
Straight from the Death Star escape scene of Episode IV: A New Hope, the all-new Lego Millennium Falcon features stunning details, like hull plates that open to reveal a detailed interior, twin flick missiles, rotating quad laser cannons and a detachable cockpit cover so you can play a game of space chess with a certain Wookie!
It opens up to reveal the interior

Featuring Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Chewbacca, Ben Kenobi, Princess Leia Organa and Darth Vader, can you rewrite history and help Ben Kenobi defeat his evil nemesis from the dark side?

This set includes LEGO mini-figures of Han Solo, Chewbacca, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia Organa, and Darth Vader, so you can replay your favorite scenes from the movie.

Place figures outside the ship to have Obi-Wan and Vader duel, or place them inside the opening hull to play chess, hide in the smuggling compartments, or observe Luke's remote training.

For enhanced play, the set includes three lightsabers, three blasters, and one crossbow.
  • Straight from the Death Star escape scene of Episode IV: A New Hope
  • Includes 6 mini-figures: Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Chewbacca, Ben Kenobi, Princess Leia Organa and Darth Vader
  • Millennium Falcon features opening hull, detailed interior, twin flick missiles, rotating laser cannons and detachable cockpit cover
  • 3 lightsabers, 3 blasters and 1 crossbow also included
  • 1254 pieces total.

TIE Striker from Rogue One's Battle of Scarif

Lego TIE Striker from Rogue One's Battle of Scarif
Play out the iconic sky battle over the planet Scarif from Rogue One with the amazing TIE Striker.

With large adjustable wings, minifigure cockpit with top and front access, an opening rear storage hold and dual spring-loaded shooters at the front, this amazing model is the perfect opponent for any rebel starfighter.

The Striker was a brand new addition to the Star Wars franchise with Rogue One so if you are looking to buy this as a birthday present for a young fan, the chances are good they do not already have it!
  • Features large adjustable wings
  • a minifigure cockpit with top and front access
  • opening rear storage hold and dual spring-loaded shooters
  • Includes 4 minifigures: TIE Pilot
  • Imperial ground crew
  • Imperial Shoretrooper and a Rebel Trooper in Endor outfit;Weapons include a blaster pistol
  • blaster rifle and a double-barreled blaster (E-22)
  • Measures over 2” (6cm) high 16” (41cm) long and 9” (24cm) wide
Reviewer Jack on Amazon said of the ship:

"The TIE Striker is constructed extremely well without any flimsy parts.

The wings as well as the body are very robust and are built with sturdiness in mind for children.

The figures included are superb, especially the newly molded helmet and print of the Shoretrooper and the TIE Pilot. It should be yours without a second thought."

Check out the price on Amazon.

Rogue One's Rebel U-Wing Fighter Lego Set

Rogue One's Rebel U-Wing Fighter

Jyn Erso lego minifig
Jyn Erso mino-fig
The amazing U-Wing Fighter from Rogue One has all the details you would expect from an authentic Star Wars model.

It includes 4 big engines, an opening minifigure cockpit with transparent lower observation window, opening side doors with pull-out stud shooters, dual spring-loaded shooters at the front, rear storage hold.  

The huge wings sweep back to create an even bigger model that looks pretty cool, in the same way an X-Wing goes into attack mode. 

Includes 5 minifigures featuring Jyn Erso and and fan favourite Bistan!
  • Measures over 3” (10cm) high, 17” (44cm) long and 7” (20cm) wide with wings closed, and over 14” (38cm) long and 25” (64cm) wide with wings open.
  • This set offers an age-appropriate building experience for ages 8-14.
Check out the price on Amazon.

AT-ST Walker


This is just the best lego set we've seen. We love how well captured the walker is. It totally evokes Jedi but it feels fresh and new as part of the Rogue One release of Lego toys.

It's also great value at its current Amazon price.

Join the hunt for pesky invading rebels aboard the AT-ST Walker, featuring posable legs, wheel-activated turning top section, opening cockpit and top hatch revealing a detailed minifigure interior, dual spring-loaded shooters and elevating guns at the front.
  • Features posable legs
  • wheel-activated turning top section
  • opening cockpit and top hatch
  • detailed minifigure interior
  • dual spring-loaded shooters and elevating front guns
  • Includes 3 minifigures: an AT-ST Driver, Baze Malbus with his heavy blaster and a Rebel Trooper
  • Weapons include a blaster pistol blaster rifle and Baze’s heavy blaster accessory elements include Baze’s backpack and the Rebel Trooper’s helmet
  • Measures over 9” (24cm) high 6” (16cm) long and 5” (13cm) wide
A reviewer on Amazon simply described this unit as being:

"a great set for the price. This has re-ignited my childhood love of Legos! Well thought-out design makes this set very sturdy once built."

Which is just great to hear if you're in the market for this latest version of the famous Star Wars walkers!

Check out the price on Amazon.

Oh. They've encased him in Carbonite! Carbon-Freezing Chamber set

Han Solo has been sent to the Carbon-Freezing Chamber by Darth Vader and is about to be frozen in a block of solid carbonite! Chilling!

Can he defeat Boba Fett and escape or will he be frozen for all eternity by the Ugnaught?

Only you can decide.
  • This awesome lego set features a control center, freeze bed with freeze function, staircase and an elevator
  • Lift bounty hunter Boba Fett into position with the elevator so he can keep guard over his prize
  • Includes 3 minifigures: Han Solo, Boba Fett, his helmet and an Ugnaught
  • Measures over 5" (13cm) high (with carbonite bed raised), 7" (18cm) wide and 5" (14cm) deep
  • Recreate unforgettable scenes from Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back

Poe Dameron's X-Wing Fighter from The Force Awakens

Lego set Poe Dameron's X-Wing Fighter
One of coolest things about The Force Awakens was not pilot Poe Dameron but his awesome black X-Wing

black x-wing lego fighterThis customized starfighter is packed with features including the 4 spring-loaded shooters, 2 stud shooters, retractable landing gear, opening wings, opening cockpit with space for a minifigure and space behind for the BB-8 Astromech Droid.  

There's even a loader with weapon rack, extra missiles and ammunition, and a seat for a minifigure. 

So climb the access ladder, strap in and get ready to recreate your own great scenes from Star Wars: The Force Awakens!

Check out the price on Amazon.

Build Kylo Ren's Command Shuttle


Lego Set of Kylo Ren's Command Shuttle


Enter the battle with Kylo Ren's personal Command Shuttle!

This fantastic, highly detailed starship has loads of features, including opening front, rear and bottom storage bays; wing-mounted, spring-loaded shooters and detachable weapon racks. 

When you're ready for even more action, activate the amazing extending wing function!

 It's time to hunt down the enemy and get the missing map piece and play out your own great scenes from Star Wars: The Force Awakens! 
  • Includes 6 minifigures with assorted weapons and accessories: a Kylo Ren, General Hux, First Order Officer, 2 First Order Crew and a First Order Stormtrooper Officer
  • Features opening front, rear and bottom storage bays; wing-mounted, spring-loaded shooters and detachable weapon racks, and amazing extending wing function
  • Weapons include 2 blaster pistols, blaster and Kylo Ren's Lightsaber
  • Accessories include 4 helmets and an electrobinoculars element
  • Activate the amazing extending wingfunction!
  • Launch the spring-loaded shooters!
  • Access the storage bays
  • Rearm with the detachable weapon racks
  • Measures over 11” (28cm) high, 8” (22cm) long and 7” (20cm) wide with wings retracted, and over 15” (40cm) high with wings extended

Last but not least, is the robot that stole the show in Rogue One, K-2SO

Lego robot Rogue One, K-2SO

Infiltrate the Empire with buildable and highly posable K-2SO!

This wise-crackin' former Imperial security droid features a single/double-arm-swinging battle function, tough-looking decorated head and armor elements, and is extra tall for an even more impressive figure.

This durable droid is perfect for dangerous missions against the Empire. 
  • Buildable and highly posable K-2SO figure features single/double-arm-swinging battle function
  • tough-looking decorated head and armor elements and an extra-tall frame
  • Activate the single/double-arm-swinging battle function and enter battle with this ominous looking buildable figurine
  • You can move the limbs into any battle pose you choose
  • Figure stands over 11” (29cm) tall
An Amazon based reviewer said of the cheeky robot:

"This is a beautiful representation of K-2SO as a LEGO figure. It takes about an hour to build depending on how fast you go." Order K-2SO from Amazon now.

Who knew there was so much awesome Star Wars Lego sets out there? As you can see there is some great selection and nice value to be had especially if you are looking to by as a Christmas or birthday gift for a young Star Wars fan!

Is Luke's green beard trimmer in The Last Jedi?



We need to talk about Luke's lightsabers.

Yet again.

So, let's clear this up.

Luke lost his blue lighter when his own father sliced his arm off in ESB. It fell down the shaft.

The brutal irony of this was that Vader lost the same saber to Obi-Wan Kenobi in Revenge of the Sith when he lost his own arm and legs.

Something about the higher ground, I'm believe.

Anyways, as that blue saber was lost to Luke he instead made his much cooler green saber. In a deleted scene from Return of the Jedi, you can find him in a cave adding a Kyber crystal to the device he's manufactured. It was cut because it was a way cooler idea to have the green blade be revealed when Luke catches it from R2D2's throw. See the above photo from the scene.

The blue saber eventually found it's way back to Luke in The Force Awakens where it went from Maz Kanata, to Finn and then Rey.

In the Last Jedi trailer we see Rey training on the Island with a blue saber while Luke overseas her exercise.

We can assume that Luke gave the saber back to Rey or that he never accepted it from her outstretched hand at the end of TFA.

Now, about that green saber and the end of Return of the Jedi.

After Luke has dispatched his dad's arm and red saber down the well, the Emperor offers him a new job at his side, replacing his now dying dad. Luke realizes he is now well on the path to the dark side of the Force, and throws his saber down in disgust, rejecting the Emperor job offer and giving the best quote from Return of the Jedi:

Never, I'm a Jedi like, my father was before me!

And then Emperor whips out some Force lightning and the rest is history as found the Journal of the Whills.

And then Lando and friends blew up the Death Star and along with it Luke's green saber.

Right?

No.

We didn't see it on screen but Like picked it up as he's wearing it at the Ewok Jamborree at the end of Jedi. 

luke with saber on endorHere's the proof. 

There you see it now? 

Luke's green Saber was NOT left on the Death Star but Vader's sure was...

So fast forward some 30 odd years and we get to Luke standing in front of Rey on an Island in a far, far away galaxy somewhere that only BB-8 and R2 could find.

We are willing to gamble that somewhere on that Island, probably in a cave as Luke has a thing for caves, Luke's green saber sits.

We also speculate that when Luke lights it up again against Ren or Benecio Del Torro's character this fan boy is going to whoop for joy because that blade reveal in Jedi was cool when I was 7 and it's going to be even cooler when I'm 39 and Luke shows us why he is The Last Jedi!!

May 3, 2017

Guardians of the Empire Strike Back?


Star Wars has had a pretty large influence in many movies, Guardians is no exception!

May 2, 2017

How Steven Spielberg made $46 million from Star Wars


How Steven Spielberg made $46 million from Star Wars

This story seems almost too good to be true.

But it is.

Spielberg made a fortune out of A New Hope.

It would appear that Lucas and Spielberg swapped percentages on their respective up coming movies at the time - Close Encounters of the Third Kind and a little movie Lucas had written and directed called Star Wars...

"George came back from Star Wars a nervous wreck," Spielberg said. "He didn't feel Star Wars came up to the vision he initially had.

He felt he had just made this little kids' movie.

He came to Mobile, Alabama where I was shooting Close Encounters on this humongous set, and hung out with me for a couple of days.

"He said, 'Oh my God, your movie is going to be so much more successful than Star Wars. This is gonna be the biggest hit of all time.'

He said, 'You want to trade some points? I'll give you two and a half percent of Star Wars if you give me two and a half per cent of Close Encounters.' I said, 'Sure, I'll gamble with that, great.'

Close Encounters made so much money and rescued Columbia from bankruptcy. It was the most money I ever made, but it was a meager success story.

Star Wars was a phenomenon and I was the happy beneficiary of a couple of points from that movie which I am still seeing money on today."

Word on the street is that Spielberg has made some 46 million on the success of Star Wars - not bad position to find yourself in eh?