What are the key influences on Star Wars?

Sep 21, 2018
A New Hope concept art by Ralph McQuarrie
Ralph McQaurrie's design work was a key influence on George Lucas; vision


The Key Influences on Star Wars 


If you think George Lucas simply sat down at his desk with a pencil and a yellow legal pad and wrote down the script for Star Wars, you’ll believe they’ve recently added an extra letter to the word gullible in the dictionary.

No, George was inspired by many things as he went about making his film. From Gandalf to Japanese cinema, he cribbed and borrowed ideas from everywhere.

Here’s some of the key influences that went into the original Star Wars film and the ones that followed. 

Please note, this is not an exhaustive investigation just a summary of the more obvious things that Lucas has discussed in the past or are so obvious, they should be mentioned!

Let’s get the movies done first and the big one that everyone talks about first


The Hidden Fortress


hidden fortress poster
The Hidden Fortress was released in 1958 and became popular in the United States with the ‘film crowd’.

The movie tells story of a general and a princess, fighting their way home through enemy lines in feudal Japan with the help of a pair of bumbling peasants.  

Does that sound similar? 

What if you replaced the pair of peasants with R2D2 and C3PO? 

Yep, Lucas took the two bickering peasants and swapped them out for what became one of the most famous cinematic pairings in history.

George Lucas relates:

 “I remember the one thing that really struck me about The Hidden Fortress,” he said, “the one thing I was really intrigued by, was the fact that the story was told from the two lowest characters. I decided that would be a nice way to tell the Star Wars story.

Take the two lowliest characters, as Kurosawa did, and tell the story from their point of view. Which, in the Star Wars case is the two droids, and that was the strongest influence."

Keen eyed fans may notice the way the film swipes from one shot to another. 

This was an idea that Lucas borrowed directly from the film.

Several other movies are said to have served as inspiration for Lucas as well. We’ll touch on these very lightly.

The Searchers


Recall the scene in which Luke approaches the burned-out farm and finds Aunt Beru and Uncle Owen left murdered and burning by the Storm Troopers.

This scene is shot in such a way that it echoes a similar scene in The Searchers, in which the young hero (not the Wayne character) also returns to his family’s farm to find the buildings burned and his own aunt and uncle murdered. 

The lift is direct and obvious.

The Searchers also features a young man drawn into a relationship with a relentless father figure, who seems made of evil as he hates the Comanche (but he's really just after revenge for they murdered his mother)...

Sound familiar to Luke and Darth’s travails? 


Ben Hur


That pod race in The Phantom Menace?

It was bigger than Ben Hur but Ben inspired it.

The fateful moment when Sebulba's own pod racer connects with young Anakin's pod is nearly a shot for shot remake of Ben Hurs’ climactic moment when Messala accidentally locks wheels with the Ben Hur character.


The Dambusters


The short version is that this movie’s famous attack on the dam is the last twenty minutes of A New Hope

The torpedoes needing to hit the exact spot on the Death Star is taken directly from the need for the Dambusters to bounce the bomb to the exact part of the Dam.  

That said, the famous trench run on the Death Star was actually a lift from 633 Squadron and the timing of the Death Star's positioning to attack the Rebel base was a point taken from the Gregory Peck vessel, The Guns of Navarone


Lawrence of Arabia


If you’ve seen this film, you’ll remember it features a lot of sand. 

As does a planet called Tatooine. 

As does an angry young man called Anakin.

Stars Wars blog notes:

“Many moves from David Lean’s epic were cribbed for sequences on Tatooine. The shot of Mos Eisley from the distance as Luke and Obi-Wan look from on high reminds one instantly of shots looking down at Damascus.

Shots of Tusken snipers looking down at speeders moving below echo the same sorts of shots in Lawrence of Arabia”.

Sir Alec Guinness also has a role in that film too…..

Attack of the Clones makes a very deliberate nod to Arabia in Attack of the Clones. 

Remember this scene to the right where Padme and Anakin have a chat about politics? 

Clones was shot in the exact same location and mimics a conversation the characters Dryden, Brighton and Allenby have.


Flash Gordon


Legend has it that George Lucas sought to make a film version of Flash Gordon following American Graffiti. 

He had no way getting the rights to do so and set upon writing his own film, Star Wars.

Flash Gordon was full of sci-fi adventures where the hero traveled to space with a laser holstered to his side a mission to rescue a princess from a very very bad man. 

And Star Was has plenty of that indeed but what Star Wars really borrows from is the concept of a fairy tale in which futuristic technology stands in for the traditional role of magic (think Merlin’s role in many stories). 

Which in sense may be true but what about the Force?

Lucas enjoyed Flash Gordon so much it was inevitable other elements crept into the movie. 

While the ‘swipe’ scene transitions were stolen from The Hidden Fortress, that famous Star Wars title amble marching up the screen in yellow was taken directly from the Flash Gordon serials. Lucas also borrowed the concept of a Cloud City


Edgar Rice Burrough’s and his Princess of Mars novels


John Carter of Mars book cover
Mr Carter
Burrough’s series of novels about Princess Dejah from Mars and a soldier from Earth called John Carter were written over one hundred years ago. 

 But resonated so long and strongly with their influence on other writers that Lucas eventually found out about them when he learned they were the inspiration for Flash Gordon. 

Lucas lifted all kinds of elements from Burrough’s works.

Ralph McQuarrie


Ralph is the man that turned Lucas’s ideas and conceptions into the pictures that would serve as the basis for the production design and look ofthe original Star War trilogy. 

If Lucas said, I have an idea that there will be two robots it was McQuarrie who gave them their look

Without McQuarrie someone else’s drawings and design would have made Star Wars a completely different movie – so much to say without McQuarrie, there would not have been the Star Wars we all know and love. 


Spock


You know when Alderaan gets smashed to a million tiny pieces by the Death Star and Obi Wan gets some really tough ‘feels’ and says "I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced." 

Yeah, Spock did that first.

Gandalf from Lord of the Rings


JRR Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings has influenced just about a million book writes and even Led Zeppelin so why not George Lucas? 

At one point the third draft of Stars featured Obi-Wan Kenobi paraphrasing direct passages from Tolkien’s writings.

While that was cut from the film, it served to show that Lucas had been thinking about the White Wizard so it can be argued that there is a bit of Gandalf in the foundations of the character of Ben Kenobi.


Fan boys and fan girls and mum and dads with fat wallets


There is no doubt fans influenced the series. 

Some are obvious, some not so. 

Let’s start with Bobba Fett. He had very minor parts in Empire and Jedi but he built up a massive fan base. 

So much so Jeremy Bulloch (and co) is a cult star of the Star Wars universe.

This love for Boba meant that Lucas put the character into Attack of the Clones. This gave an origin for Fett. Some loved it, some hated.

Either way, it was pretty cool to see Mace Windu cut off Jango’s head with his saber.

Jar Jar Binks.

By and large, most ‘adults’ hate Jar Jar. Kids love him, but that’s not the point. Fan venom feedback meant Jar Jar’s role was significantly reduced in Attack of the Clones and he barely made an appearance in Revenge of the Sith, uttering only a single line.

Fans also spend money. And there was a lot of money to be made from Star War merchandise. 

So much so that by the time Return of the Jedi rolled around, it was said to be funded by sales of merchandise from Empire. 

The cynics have suggested that to make even more money, the intended presence of Wookie was changed to the Ewoks so toys and the like would be more marketable to children.

And let's not get started on the Porgs in The Last Jedi...

Timothy Zahn’s Coruscant


In the last 20 years there has been a massive written word extension of the Star Wars universe. Lots of stories about new and classic characters have been lapped up by the fans. 

Timothy Zahn’s Heir to the Throne novels created the world of Coruscant – you may know this planet as it’s where a huge amount of the action in the prequel trilogies occur.

Zahn’s novels are credited with making Star Wars popular again in the early 1990s and may have had an influence on George Lucas’s decision to make the prequel movies.

A key take way from Zahn's work is the creation of the character Grand Admiral Thrawn - he now has entered the new Star Wars cannon by virtue of having a key role in season three of Star Wars Rebels. 

-

These were just some of the more major influences on the Star Wars films. There is probably a hundred other things that inspired Lucas as the 6 films were made. 

Certainly we haven’t yet mentioned Frank Capra and Yoda’s death in Jedi!

11 truly chilling moments from Star Wars

Sep 20, 2018


There's plenty of things to love in Star Wars.

Space battles, sword fights, escapes by the skin of one's teeth and a certain metal bikini.

There's also plenty of chilling moments.

Here's 10 of the best of them... Why do most of these moments feature Vader?*
  1. When Vader force chokes the Admiral with the line “I find your lack of faith disturbing”. 
  2. When Anakin massacres the Younglings in Revenge of the Sith. 
  3. When that big flying thing with needles comes into interrogate Princess Leia when she’s in cell number 2187. That noise it makes is so disconcerting. 
  4. When in the cave in Empire, Luke cuts of Vader’s head to only find he has cut his own head off. Meta much? A case of the son becomes the father and the father becomes the son?
  5. In Cloud City, when Vader is revealed to be waiting in the dining room. And then blocks Han’s laser shot using the Force.
  6. When Vader utters something about being Luke’s father. That reveal is one of the greatest twist in movie history. It's up there with the Planet of the Apes being revealed as being Earth and that Bruce Willis was a ghost the whole time in Sixth Sense!
  7. When the cave in the Asteroid Battle the Falcon has sheltered in, is revealed to be a giant space slug with teeth. It was just gruesome!
  8. When the Wampa attacks Luke Skywalker in the snow. Brutal.
  9. When Anakin beheads Count Dooku with extreme prejudice. And yet another demonstration that he is turning to the dark side of the Force.
  10. When Luke comes across the charred remains of Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru. When I was that as a kid, I think it was probably the first moment of genuine horror I'd seen on the telly. That smoking coming off the place...
  11. In Rogue One, Vader shows up in black. You can't see him yet you can hear his breathing. Suspense! What's going to happen and then gasshiizzeed, he turns on his red light saber and then unleashes hell on the Rebel crew. It has become an iconic moment for the character!
*Clearly that was a rhetorical question. Vader has his reasons...

16 boring* facts about the Lucas Star Wars prequels (*not boring at all)

Sep 19, 2018
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 directed by George Lucas but there's no point trying to convince the naysayers so let's just get on with the trivia.

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 loses 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 recognized 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 yelling "Anakin! Anakin!". 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 and despite 'fan hate' it was a massive seller. 
  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!).
  17. In Revenge of the Sith, Anakin slices off Count Dooku's hands - look clearly once Dooku is dead and you can see them lying on the floor. 

Extra for Experts:

Darth Vader's name does not mean Dark Father (Quit with this nonsense!)

No, I am your father!

Darth Vader's name was not a clue that he was Luke's father


George Lucas lies.

Or rather he spreads myth and legend about Star Wars.

For instance, he once said he has written 12 Star Wars movies.

But no, he didn't.

And what about the claim that Darth Vader was always Luke's father?

Lucas has said that the meaning of Darth Vader's name was 'Dark Father' by way of a loose Dutch translation.*

In the German language 'vater' means father, adding to the translation mix.

Both those language meanings are simply incidental. Lucas has been quoted as saying:

"'Darth' is a variation of dark. And 'Vader' is a variation of father. So it's basically Dark Father.

All the names have history, but sometimes I make mistakes -- Luke was originally going to be called Luke Starkiller, but then I realized that wasn't appropriate for the character.

It was appropriate for Anakin, but not his son. I said, 'Wait, we can't weigh this down too much -- he's the one that redeems him.'"

Lucas seems to be suggesting with the name he was giving a big clue about the familial ties.

I said he lies but he's really spreading myth about the lore of Vader as he had no idea Vader was Luke's father until at the earliest point of the second draft of Empire's script.

When Lucas was drafting Star Wars he wrote lots of stories and then he wrote even more stories and permutations of those stories with characters, some green, some goblins but there was always two separate characters of Anakin Skywalker (or Starkiller if you want to be really clear on the point) and Darth Vader.

The first draft of Empire was written by Leigh Bracket based on direction given by Lucas.

It DID NOT have Vader being Luke's father as a plot point.

Read it for yourself.

See, there's no mention of the relationship at all.

At All.

Lucas, nor Brackett, had simply not conceived of the idea.

It was not until Lucas and Lawrence Kasdan both were well advanced on the script for The Empire Strikes Back that the characters of Anakin and Darth were merged to make them one character.

So the reality is there was no clever clue about Vader's origins or even a play on words to give Vader his so called Dutch translation.

Rather, Darth is probably just a cool name that Lucas made up or cribbed from somewhere - he did this with Jedi and Sith from Edgar Rice Burrough's works.

Update:

Based on the comments below (thanks for chipping in guys and gals!) is clear this article didn't do enough to resolve the question "what does Darth Vader mean?" for some readers.

I've tightened it up a bit and added more explanation.

It's our firm view that the reasoning in this article is sound.

Lucas did not intend for the name Darth Vader to mean "Dark Father" by way of a clever word translation - this based on the fact that at the time of writing the first Star Wars script he had no idea himself that Darth Vader was to become Luke's father. It was not a hint, nor part of a long game.

We believe any other argument that cannot counter this is somewhat redundant in terms of it being a clue as to Vader's parenthood as being a dark father.

By all means, feel free to disagree but I urge you to think freely and rationally.

Name callers merely look stupid, you jerks.

Want to read some more sweet things about Darth Vader? 

Try this click bait on for size:
* Darth is not a Dutch word and while on paper Vader means father, it's said very differently.

21 signs you’re addicted to Star Wars

Sep 18, 2018
death sticks attack of the clones

Let’s face it, if you’re going to be addicted to something then being addicted to Star Wars is not too bad a place to find yourself in.

Unless you are actually hung up on death sticks. Then you’ve got it realllly bad and you need to go home and rethink your life.

You know you’re addicted to Star Wars when….


1.     You can find at least five reasons to defend the inclusion of Jar Jar Binks in The Phantom Menace.

2. When feeding your baby you play the soundtrack from Empire Strikes Back.

3. Everything that appears dodgy to you is most certainly a trap!

4. You enjoy watching Big Bang Theory way more than the casual viewer.

5. You tell everyone that Empire is the best film but in your heart, you know you love Jedi the most.

6. You have the original version of Star Wars on VHS. And laser disk. And DVD. And Blu Ray. You spied Grand Moff Tarkin’s cameo in Revenge of the Sith the first time you saw the movie.

7. You know that R2D2 is 96 cm tall.

8. Your favourite episode of Friends is The one with the Princess Leia Fantasy.

9. You knew about the existence of the Holiday Special before the existence of the internet.

10. You still have your Star Wars bed sheets and pillows. On your bed.

11. You know that Darth Maul has ten horns on his red head.

12. If George asked you to be his wingman, you’d say yes.

13. When someone mentions Guinness you don’t think about beer.

14. You know that Han Solo ad libbed his “I know” line.

15. You run a Star Wars fan blog.

16. You know that Indianna Jones was named for George Lucas’s own dog.

17. You know that some of the Dagobah swamp scenes were filmed in Lucas’s private swimming pool.

18. You know the shipping titles of all three prequel films (for non addicts The Phantom Menace was "The Doll House", Clones was "Cue Ball" and Sith, "The Bridge".)

19. You know the original name for Skywalker was Starkiller.


21. You can tell which parts of prequels feature a puppet or the CGI version of Yoda.

Quite possibly the worst cosplay team ever!

I was pretty sure these guys were doing some of the worst Star Wars cosplay ever but this crew of garbage bag loving friends has managed to take things up (or down) a level with their brand of Star Wars costume play:

really bad star wars cosplay costumes

I like their spirit! 

If you want more Star Wars themed cosplay check out the best ever, the Darth Talon, the Snips,  and of course the bikini from Jedi.

Solo movie script confirms the Holiday Special is canon

what is chewbacca's fathers name

Have you ever seen the infamous made for television Star Wars film, known to many as the Holiday Special?

It's a turd of a thing.

Absurd and ridiculous and features crazy moments such as a sex simulation hologram and Carrie Fisher singing a song called 'Life Day' to the tune of Star Wars. 

The plot revolves around Han and Chewbacca visiting Chewbacca's home planet Kashyyyk so Chewie may celebrate Life Day with his family. 

And so we met them. 

Turns out Chewie has a son called Lumpy and wife called Mallatobuck and a father called Attichitcuk.

Now let's cut to the Han Solo prequel where Han has befriended Chewbacca and they do their introductions. When Chewie growls in name in his native language of Shyriiwook, Han replies that Chewie will need a nick name because's he's not saying 'that' every time.

But what is that? In the theatre, I just laughed because I thought Han was meaning the word Chewbacca. 

Great joke writer Jon Kasdan. 

But it turns out to be an even better joke than I first thought. 

Kasdan has gone full Star Wars nerd and taken the name Attichitcuk from the Star Wars Holiday Special and used it as part of Chewbacca's introduction. 

Han: "So what's your name?"

Chewbacca: "Chewbacca, son of Attichitcuk"

So that's that then, no matter what George Lucas thinks of the Holiday Special (legend has it he bought as many copies as he could when he found them before the internet age), the name is canon .

Fun fact: the special was the first place the character of Boba Fett was actually introduced! 

Believe it or not, Fett featured in a cartoon segment prior to his mainstream appearance in The Empire Strikes Back. 

If you think think solo scriptwriters Jon and Lawrence Kasdan did a bit of a cheat here, remember that Rian Johnson, got away with such a move in The Last Jedi when he scripted BB8 to be the one to say "I've got a bad feeling about this" in his robot language.

This was a pretty cool bit of trivia - check out how much lore the Kasdans packed into Solo. 

↠ 11 obvious things you may have missed even though you have watched Star Wars 117 times.

Sep 17, 2018
David Russell story board jedi finale
Jedi story board by David Russell.

Plot points you may have missed in the Star Wars movies


I came across this pretty cool factoid about Star Wars the other day, that being the scruffy nerfherder called Han Solo is the only non-Jedi to use a lightsaber in the entire Original Trilogy of Star Wars

That is the moment on Hoth when he uses Luke’s saber to slice open the guts of Luke’s recently dead Taun-taun. I thought it was pretty cool and mused that that was something every Star Wars fan NEEDs to know. 

Well, this was was until Finn came along in The Force Awakens...

If you've seen Star Wars a million times before, you may have picked this up – but it got me wondering as well, what other completely obvious things have fans missed even though those things have been staring them in the face since the movies first hit the silver screen? (Are screens still silver? – Ed)
  • So, we’ve covered off the Han thing – how about something from Jedi - the word Ewok is never mentioned in Return of the Jedi at all!
  • Luke Skywalker is irrelevant to the last half of the movie. If you think about it, in terms of destroying the Empire, Luke didn’t need to be on the Death Star as Lando Calrissian had that covered – the Emperor and Vader operating as two Sith Lords working in tandem to rule the Galaxy would have been destroyed when Lando blew up the Death Star. Right? *
  • Grand Moff Tarkin plays a very small cameo in Revenge of the Sith. He steps out from side to confer with the Emperor and Vader.
  • In a New Hope, Leia was kept captive on the Death Star in cell number 2187. This was a deliberate choice as 2187 is the year that the Lucas directed film THX 1138, was set.
  • Several E.T. like creatures are found in The Phantom Menace. Guess someone managed to phone home? It was a kind of payback to his good friend Steven Speilberg who put Yoda in E.T and some other Star Wars references.
  • In Jedi, listen very carefully as Darth Vader picks up the Emperor and throws him down the Death Star shaft. This is the only time the Jedi theme music plays over a shot of Vader, reflecting his return to the light side of the Force.
  • R2D2’s height is 96cm tall.
  • Vader was actually the only Star Wars film character to lose an arm three times! And both his legs as well. Obi-Wan Kenobi got 3 of his limbs in Revenge of the Sith!
  • The Bantha milk drank by Luke and Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru in A New Hope is blue!
  • Chewbacca doesn't say a word of English...
Well, to be fair some of these points were not hugely obvious (don’t force choke us!) but they were pretty cool none-the-less. Were there any we missed or where they too subtle?

* The counter to this claim is of course that Luke cut off Vader's hand and realizes he's tapped into the dark side of the Force and is about to become what his father was. His refusal to join the dark side enrages the Emperor so that he decides to kill Luke. Fearing his son was about to die, Vader then fulfilled the prophecy of him being the Chosen One by killing the Emperor thus restoring balance to the Force. 

IF Luke had not fought Vader in this manner, it is reasonable to argue that Vader and more likely the Emperor would not have been distracted and would have focused their efforts on the Rebel assault on the Death Star and wiped them out using the armada of Star Destroyers that were waiting on the periphery of the battle. 

Thus meaning Luke was actually central to the plot of Return of the Jedi. Suck it nerf herders!

Extra for Experts:

15 cool facts and trivia about actress Carrie Fisher and a character she played called Princess Leia Organa

princess leia slave bikini long pose

15 cool facts and trivia about actress Carrie Fisher


Princess Leia is one of the quintessential Star Wars characters, one of the so-called 'Big 3' characters. 

Every epic adventure needs a princess to be rescued and Leia was that damsel in distress.

Or was she?

Carrie Fisher was one of Hollywood’s more interesting creatures. 

Made a world wide star by Star Wars, her private life has maintained her legendary status amongst the fans, what with her coke addiction and mental health challenges. And the marriage to Paul Simon, her affair with Harrison Ford, and of course her role in the classic movie, The Blues Brothers


So given Leia is Carrie and Carrie is Leia, here’s 15 facts and trivia about the actress and character.
  • Princess Leia never actually gets to 'meet' Obi-Wan Kenobi. She sees him from afar when she's escaping the Death Star and Obi-Wan is about to let Darth Vader kill him but that's it. Unless you count Obi-Wan being present for her birth in Revenge of the Sith...
  • As Adele would say, 'rumour has it' that Carrie Fisher had a massive drug problem during the filming of Return of the Jedi. Cocaine was apparently her powder of choice. Apparently. OK, there is no apparent. In Jedi you can see she wears an extra long fingernail which is just a perfect instrument to assist with the distribution of nose candy up the nose.
  • Carrie Fisher has spoken many times of her struggles with bipolar disorder. You wouldn't wish this on any anybody. Watch this interview she did with the great Steven Fry.
  • Princess Leia was subject to one of the most famousad-libss in cinema history - that being Han Solo's response to her declaration of love - "I know". Harrison Ford apparently made it up at Irvine Kershner's suggestion. Leia got to return the line in Jedi during the Battle of Endor. After Han Solo grabbed her breast....
  • According to Fisher in her novel, The Princess Diarist, she and Harrison Ford had a three month fling during the making of A New Hope.
  • Carrie Fisher appeared asa nun in Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. This movie was a weird Kevin Smith homage to Star Wars and featured an appearance by Fisher as a nun and Mark Hamill as a parody of himself. Carrie's cameo was the one that got the laughs...
  • A lot of people forget this but Fisher appeared in the classic movie When Harry met Sally. She was the 'friend' of Sally who ended up marrying Harry’s best friend.
  • Carrie Fisher wrote an actual bestselling novel Postcards from the Edge and screenplay for the film based on her writing. The book was about her drug addiction and her relationship with her mother. Fisher has managed to parlay her writing talent with a few turns at playing script doctor for a few Hollywood movies, most notable Dustin Hoffman's Outbreak. Her appearance in Scream 3 was apparently scripted by herself. Beauty and brains eh?
  • Speaking of mothers, Carrie Fisher's mother is actually a famous actress in her own right, Debbie Reynolds
  • Fisher was once married to one half of Simon and Garfunkel. It was Simon.
  • Fisher delivered some classic quotes:
    • Help me Obi-wan Kenobi, you're my only hope
    • Governor Tarkin, I should have expected to find you holding Vader’s leash. I recognized your foul stench when I was brought on board.
    • Aren't you a little short for a stormtrooper?
    • Why, you stuck up, half-witted, scruffy-looking Nerf herder. 
    • I'd just as soon kiss a wookie!
  • If you asked the average Star Wars fan what was Leia’s home world, they would be correct in answering the planet Alderraan and they could go to the head of the class. If you asked the most hard core fan, they might also quickly add that Leia and Luke were actually born at a medical facility on Polissa Massa – if you’ve seen Revenge of the Sith you might recall that is where Obi Wan Kenobi took the injured Padme for medical assistance.
  • Leia's character has her own musical theme titled "Princess Leia's Theme". It is represented by the musical leitmotif method which is famously used across the films. The piece was composed by John Williams and was used several times. It first appeared in A New Hope, heard when Princess Leia is captured by the evil Sith Lord, Darth Vader. Later, it surfaces as R2-D2 plays her holographic message to Obi-Wan Kenobi. The also theme plays when Kenobi is killed by Vader and it makes an appearance in the credits of the movie. It also is used in the two follow up movies and the Revenge of the Sith prequel when her adoptive father Bail Organa introduces her to her adoptive mother. 
  • Leia's golden metal bikini that she wore while strangling the slug Jabba the Hutt in Return of Jedi is perhaps one of the most famous bikini in the history of bikinis. Its iconic status in film history is perhaps only rivalled by Ursula Andress’s exit from the beach in James Bond’s Dr No. Many women (and the odd male!)  like to dress as Leia and attend conventions dressed in the bikini. Bless. Bless them all…
  • In a New Hope, Leia was kept captive on the Death Star in cell number 2187. This was a deliberate choice as 2187 is the year that the Lucas directed film THX 1138, was set. The Force Awakens took this even further and used the number as Finn's designated Stormtrooper number FN2187.
  • Leia says the last line of the movie Rogue One "What Is It They've Sent Us? Hope." It's a clever set up for the title of A New Hope and ties in thematically well. In saying this last line, that takes Leia's tally of saying the final line of a Star Wars movie to three - the other two being The Force Awakens and Return of the Jedi.
  • The Last Jedi was Carrie's last Star Wars movie, meaning Leia appeared in a total of seven Star Wars films (Remember the Revenge of the Sith appearance!). Sounds like she''ll be shoehorned into IV so let's see what happens!
And there you have it! 

Do you have any thing else to add? If so, leave a note in the comments. 

RIP Carrie.

Anakin Skywalker quotes - the good ones before he became Darth Vader anyway.

Sep 16, 2018
the shadow of darth vader poster

Love him or hate him, Anakin Skywalker was an integral part of the Star Wars prequel films


We guess there's almost a 50:50 split amongst the fandom.

While some moan and drop jokes on Reddit all day about how he doesn’t 'like sand', others revel in his massacre of the Younglings in the Jedi Temple.

Either way, both the child and adult versions of the Chosen One had a lot to say!

Here’s a selection of Anakin’s best quotes from the prequel movies – all before he became Darth Vader – which we count as when Anakin first steps out in his new & shiny black costume after getting his legs handed to him by Obi-Wan at the conclusion of their epic lightsabre duel.

now this is pod racing!

The Phantom Menace quotes


Anakin was played by Jake Lloyd, the kid who had made his name as the kid in Arnold Schwarzenegger’s shocker of a Christmas movie, Jingle All the Way.

He attracted a lot of hate for his acting and having to say lines such as “are you an angel?” but anyone who dismisses his “now this is pod racing!” moment during one of the most thrilling chases in Star Wars, simply doesn’t like Star Wars. Haters are gonna hate but they need to chill out.

Here's little Ani's quotes

Anakin: Are you an angel?
Queen Amidala: What?
Anakin: An angel. I've heard the deep space pilots talk about them. They live on the moons of Iego, I think. They're the most beautiful creatures in the universe.
Queen Amidala: You're a funny little boy. How do you know so much?
Anakin: I listen to all the traders and star pilots who come through here. I'm a pilot, you know, and someday I'm going to fly away from this place.

Anakin: Mom, you said that the biggest problem in the universe is no one helps each other.

Perhaps the most cringing moment in the whole movie, it however served to show that Anakin started out with a pure heart.

Anakin: You're a Jedi Knight, aren't you?
Qui-Gon Jinn: What makes you think that?
Anakin: I saw your laser sword. Only Jedi carry that kind of weapon.
Qui-Gon Jinn: Perhaps I killed a Jedi and took it from him.
Anakin: I don't think so. No one can kill a Jedi.
Qui-Gon Jinn: I wish that were so.

A nice piece of foreshadowing what was to become of Anakin.

Anakin: What are midi-chlorians?
Qui-Gon Jinn: Midi-chlorians are a microscopic life form that resides within all living cells.

A lot of Star Wars fans hated this exchange as for them it removed some of the mysteriousness of the Force.

Anakin: Now this is pod racing!

Anakin: I will come back and free you mom, I promise

Anakin did eventually come back to free Shimi however it was from the Tuskens who had treated her so poorly, she was too die shortly afterward.

Anakin: Qui-Gon told me to stay in this cockpit, and that's what I'm going to do!

And the boy that could, did. He was drawn into the space battle above Naboo and helped break the so called blockade by destroying the Droid Control Ship.

Attack of the Clones quotes by Anakin Skywalker


concept art clone wars jango and bobba fett
Nothing to do with Anakin, it's just cool concept art!
In this film, Anakin was played by Hayden Christensen who at the point of his casting was probably most well known for his part in Sofia Coppola's The Virgin Suicides and various television roles.

Christensen is often scorned for his acting in this movie however many people ignore or where ignorant that George Lucas wanted his actors to deliver their lines in a deliberate manner to pay homage to the movies that inspired Lucas AND you could actually argue his efforts are no worse than Mark Hamill's whinny Luke, "But I was going into Tosche Station to pick up some power converters!"

Anyways, here's some Anakin quotes from Attack of the Clones:

Padmé Amidala: You're not all-powerful, Ani.
Anakin Skywalker: Well, I should be.

Anakin: I don't like sand. It's coarse and rough and irritating and it gets everywhere. Not like here. Here everything is soft and smooth.

This quote is most often used to highlight how terrible Attack of the Clones is due in part to the apparent poor scripting and bad acting. In his defence, George Lucas has consistently said that he especially wanted this style of voice acting as that’s how it was in the good old days of Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers.

Padme: You're making fun of me!
Anakin: Oh, no, I'd be too frightened to tease a senator!

Anakin: I've got a bad feeling about this.

A famous line uttered by every major character in the film franchise.

Obi-Wan: Why do I get the feeling you're going to be the death of me?
Anakin: Don't say that, master. You're the closest thing I have to a father.

A light moment for the film but for those who know how the relationship played out, a dark reminder. It was some nice foreshadowing their by Lucas. There's a lot of that in the prequel films.

Anakin: I killed them. I killed them all. They're dead, every single one of them. And not just the men, but the women and the children, too. They're like animals, and I slaughtered them like animals. I hate them!

Anakin raged this quote after he had returned from rescuing his mother from the Tusken people. It’s seen as one of the first times that Anakin went astray from his Jedi training and strayed to the Dark Side of the Force.



Revenge of the Sith quotes by Anakin Skywalker


Anakin Skywalker: Obi-Wan, may the force be with you.
Obi-Wan Kenobi: Goodbye old friend. May the force be with you.

This was a telling moment in the film – it is the last time that Obi-Wan and Anakin talk as friends. Lucas deliberated filmed the scene as Anakin standing in the shadow, Obi-Wan the light, thus signalling the path each was about to take.

If you want to read what Anakin said in the later movies, check out these Darth Vader quotes.

The rest of these quotes occur during and after Anakin and Obi-Wan's epic light saber duel.

Obi-Wan: You were the chosen one! It was said that you would destroy the Sith, not join them. You were to bring balance to the force, not leave it in darkness.

Obi-Wan Kenobi: You have allowed this dark lord to twist your mind, until now, until now you've become the very thing you swore to destroy.

Anakin Skywalker: Don't lecture me, Obi-Wan! I see through the lies of the Jedi. I do not fear the dark side as you do. I have brought peace, freedom, justice, and security to my new Empire.

Obi-Wan Kenobi: Your new Empire?

Anakin Skywalker: Don't make me kill you.

Obi-Wan Kenobi: Anakin, my allegiance is to the Republic, to democracy.

Anakin Skywalker: If you're not with me, then you're my enemy.
Obi-Wan Kenobi: Only a Sith deals in absolutes.
Obi-Wan Kenobi: I will do what I must.

This is a most talked about moment between our two jedi friends. George Lucas used this scene as a comment of sorts on American politics. During the so called War on Terror, George Bush used the with us or against us argument – to the frustration of many people, Lucas included.

Obi-Wan: It's over Anakin, I have the high ground.
Anakin Skywalker: You underestimate my power!
Obi-Wan: Don't try it.
Anakin Skywalker: I hate you.
Obi-Wan: You were my brother, Anakin. I loved you.

Return of the Jedi -Annakin's last words to Luke

You thought we forgot this movie didn't you?

It's very arguable that at the moment Darth Vader chose to save his son Luke's life by throwing his Sith Master down the shaft, he became Anakin Skywalker again.

Here's the conversation that the redeemed Anakin has with his son. 

Darth Vader: Luke... help me take this mask off.
Luke: But you'll die.
Darth Vader: Nothing... can stop that now. Just for once... let me... look on you with my own eyes.
Anakin: Now... go, my son. Leave me.
Luke: No. You're coming with me. I'll not leave you here, I've got to save you.
Anakin: You already... have, Luke. You were right. You were right about me. Tell your sister... you were right.
Luke: Father... I won't leave you.

Want to read some more sweet things about Darth Vader? 

Try this click bait on for size:

7 tragic things about Darth Vader.
Why did Darth Vader turn to the dark side of The Force? (if you were living under a rock).
10 Darth Vader quotes that show he was the worst Sith Lord ever (but possibly the greatest Jedi)
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