|Darth Vader confers with Moff Jerjerrod in a specially posed publicity image.|
Darth Vader immediately makes his mark on the Imperial officers with his arrival at the second Death Star
, as a shocked and surprised Moff Jerjerrod (Michael Pennington, brilliantly dropping his 'adam's apple' early on) realises that the station's construction must be put back on schedule at all costs, especially so with Vader's news that the Emperor himself is on his way to inspect the ultimate weapon in the not too distant future...
|Another specially posed image - note that Vader and Jerjerrod are walking in the opposite direction to what was seen in the film, as the immense hangar set was only half built from one side.|
|The Emperor is coming to the Death Star! A great posed image, of which a similar B/W would be adapted for use in the Marvel comics adaptation of the film.|
|Al Williamson and Carlos Garzon's artwork for the scene in the 1983 Marvel adaptation, which primarily adapted publicity stills. |
|B/W outtake from the famous Vader publicity shoot used for the film's magazines/tie-in's and merchandise.|
Having had a superb time working with director Irvin Kershner on The Empire Strikes Back
in developing the 'thinking man's Darth Vader', actor/body builder Dave Prowse's return to the Star Wars
filming universe from February 18th and 19th, then in and out towards April, 1982, is sadly not so welcoming by the new production team regime, as his scenes playing the character are scaled back primarily to posed publicity images and walking/conversation sequences on the second Death Star'
s key sets whilst stuntman Bob Anderson (having previously played Vader to great success in action scenes for TESB
) becomes the primary actor to play the role for the film's showpiece lightsaber duel sequence, and its key dialogue sequences linked to Luke and the Emperor. Not enjoying working with new director Richard Marquand (who largely ignores the actor and any suggested input from Prowse), not allowed to see the film's entire script (indeed, with the total secrecy surrounding the project, Prowse is often given fake lines to say as Vader that will be replaced with the real ones spoken by James Earl Jones during 1983 post production), and overall feeling untrusted - regarded as a security leak due to his friendly and enthusiastic connections with the Star Wars
fan base, as well as a then mostly positive relationship with the British press - it's no wonder that the actor would go on to famously consider his brief time spent on Return of the Jedi
as the most unpleasant experience he'd ever had on a film set. But worse is still to come, and in the most unfair of ways, for Prowse at Elstree in the not too distant future...
|Continuity polaroid of Michael Pennington and Dave Prowse on the hangar set - February, 1982.|
Enthused and ambitious British director Richard Marquand is keen to continue using the best and brightest of the British acting community's talent on the film, even using/recommending friends he'd previously worked with or known whilst he himself had briefly been in the acting profession during the late sixties and early seventies. Acclaimed British Casting Director Mary Selway Buckley would be on hand to equally advise Marquand. Michael Pennington was once such popular stage actor that Marquand was keen to use for an Imperial, especially in the role of the nervy but loyal Moff Jerjerrod. Across the period of filming, Pennington's on-set stand-in was Jack Dearlove, whilst Dave Prowse's was Roy Emerson.
|Michael Pennington in a posed publicity image as Moff Jerjerrod.|
original drafts, Jerjerrod's character was to have had a much more
expanded role as a rival to Darth Vader in
the Emperor's eyes - picking up where Vader
failed in trying to capture Luke. He was, in
effect, the Emperor's Counsel (and Vader would have to salute him!). As a result,
Vader was to be very jealous of Jerjerrod.
The ambitious Moff was also not supposed to be quite as
nervous and cowardly as he ended up being during the beginning of the final film. In fact, he mouthed off to Vader
quite a few times and
there was always an air
of competition between
the two. In the final
Jerjerrod's role was
reduced and even more
so when the eventual
final cut of the film was
It is widely believed
that Jerjerrod wears the
wrong rank badge due
to a "blooper" during
production on ROTJ
, as claimed, for instance, at the
Star Wars Technical
website. However, there
seems to be no direct
proof supporting this, and Jerjerrod's
insignia need not, in
fact, be inappropriate for his rank.
The expansive Death Star hangar set primarily built as a one half side only set located on the prestigious Star Wars Stage at Elstree would house a specially built (from ILM design plans) partial replica of the superb Imperial Shuttle set. More on that, behind the scenes-wise, with the later arrival of the Emperor...