Thursday, 30 January 2014
Inside the huge expanse of the Jedi Temple Archives on Coruscant, layered with statues of fallen and "Lost" Jedi, Obi-Wan Kenobi searches for the location of the missing planet Kamino, in a scene from EPISODE II. The Kaminoan Cloners, and more information about the late Jedi Knight Sifo-Dyas, look set to be an important part of the upcoming, partially completed Sixth Season of THE CLONE WARS, recently subtitled The Lost Missions, arriving first on German TV next month.
Tuesday, 28 January 2014
|Poster concept art by Tom Chantrell for THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK.|
Having conceived and executed the now iconic "Dirty Dozen" artwork for the second UK poster campaign of the original STAR WARS used in 1978 (which would also appear in US movie theatres and advertising soon after, becoming equally popular with fans there), experienced film illustrator and poster legend Tom Chantrell was quickly commissioned by Gary Kurtz (who was a big fan of the "Dirty Dozen" SW piece) and 20TH CENTURY FOX UK to provide poster material ideas for the subsequent sequel. Here's one of those poster concept pieces that has since gone on to be popular with fans of the dark-hearted sequel and appear in merchandising. Intriguingly, the artist this time out uses/adapts some of Ralph McQuarrie's classic conceptual art ideas into his intergalactic pot pourri- an intriguing fusion that works well. Note on the bottom right Luke atop his crashed X-wing on Dagobah, as well as the flipped Walker firing on the early version of the Tauntaun and rider at the bottom left corner (its likely that no material of the final walker designs at ILM were released outside the production offices at that stage). There's also an X-wing used from McQuarrie's famous down the trench illustration for the original STAR WARS. The photographic reference material used here comes from stills shot at Elstree Studios between April and early June, so the poster, which also has the Lucas requested GONE WITH THE WIND mantra for Han and Leia, must likely have been commissioned and worked on around late Summer 1979, perhaps before photo material of the Dagobah sets were available (the bog planet scenarios not being constructed until late July and into August).
|McQuarrie's early Tauntaun and rider come under AT-AT attack!|
|McQuarrie's vision of Luke and Artoo arrived on Dagobah.|
Interview with Shirley Chantrell: An interview with Shirley Chantrell Film on Paper
Obituary: Tom William Chantrell
Check out DREAMS AND VISIONS PRESS John Scoleri's lovely and informative tribute/annotated guide to Ralph McQuarrie's conceptual art for STAR WARS and his commercial released THE STAR WARS PORTFOLIO from 1977: An Annotated Guide to The Star Wars Portfolio by Ralph McQuarrie | Star Wars Blog
Sunday, 26 January 2014
News on the next Skywalker family adventures continues to trickle in. Slowly, oh so slowly...
J.J. Abrams: Star Wars 7 script is complete - Yahoo Movies UK
Keck's Exclusives First Look: Carrie Fisher Visits Legit and Big Bang - Today's News: Our Take | TVGuide.com
Star Wars Episode 7: Carrie Fisher 'confirms' return | Film | theguardian.com
TheForce.net: J.J. Abrams: Production On Episode VII Will Commence In May
Kathleen Kennedy Talks Spin-Off Films | The Star Wars Underworld
Pixar Joining Star Wars Universe - Latino-Review.com
|Image: WARNER BROTHERS.|
The quiet revolutionary, THX, as played by Robert Duvall, is determined to escape the nightmare world he exists in, in this classic scene from the 25th century set fantasy nightmare THX 1138-the proper debut of then "new wave" director George Lucas, presenting us with a similar but anti precursor in many ways to certain aspects of STAR WARS.
▶ THX 1138 (1971) - Original Trailer - YouTube (Note: this trailer contains some adult material)
This early seventies classic will be getting a rare theatrical screening, likely in its later Special Edition form, at London's Prince Charles Cinema on 26th February at 21.00, within a unique sci-fi season that also includes the Russian version of SOLARIS and Kubrick masterpiece 2001.
Prince Charles Cinema, Leicester Sq. London's Best Value Cinema - Events
Saturday, 25 January 2014
Then innocent Anakin Skywalker is supported by his Jedi friends, Master Qui-Gon Jinn and Padawan Obi-Wan Kenobi, with additional non-human help from friendly Astro-Droid Artoo Detoo, in this great publicity image for EPISODE I from 1997. Here, with the launch of the still criminally under-valued Prequel Trilogy, was a fresh spin on previously established STAR WARS favourites, with Lucas's introduction of Liam Neeson's newly conceived Qui-Gon Jinn giving the film a strong core of heroism and mentorship to the younger heroes accompanying him in much the same way that Sir Alec Guinness did for Obi-Wan to Mark Hamill's Luke Skywalker.
In a few months time, with the upcoming sequels of EPISODEs VII to IX beginning, its hopefully likely that we shall soon be witness to an intriguing mixture of old and new heroes all over again...
Thursday, 23 January 2014
On the Medal Ceremony set at Shepperton Studios in mid 1976, Peter Mayhew takes a breather whilst in full Wookiee costume, for this distinctive behind the scenes shot from EPISODE IV.
Tuesday, 21 January 2014
As if the Separatist attack on Coruscant hadn't already been bad enough, now the centre of the universe finds itself caught in the events of Order 66, as a spectacular explosion at the Jedi Temple soon rocks the capital city, witnessed by a tense Senator Amidala and her protocol droid servant, C-3PO. A crisis point to behold in EPISODE III: REVENGE OF THE SITH.
Sunday, 19 January 2014
On the STAR WARS STAGE at Elstree in mid to late February 1982, esteemed British actor Sebastian Shaw joins the cast briefly, arriving on set in the utmost of secret conditions- listed in certain filming call sheets of the time merely as "The Man" (and/or not given a name), to play his all-important scenes as the dying Anakin Skywalker, opposite his on-screen son Luke, as played by Mark Hamill. Working well with the acting duo, director Richard Marquand, with assistance from George Lucas, helps to deliver a genuinely touching and sad conclusion to Luke Skywalker's quest to redeem his father from the Dark Side of the Force...
With thanks to Ian Trussler for the top image.
Saturday, 18 January 2014
In and out of filming classic moments including fighting thuggee cults and voodoo, cutting a rope bridge in half and eating chilled monkey brains, Harrison Ford gets a chance to enjoy playing Indiana Jones anew, and the whole movie-making process, during the Sri Lankan principal photography for INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM.
Thursday, 16 January 2014
A permanently soaked Ewan McGregor films his action scenes of Obi-Wan against Jango Fett (here likely played by stunt double Scott McLean) on a huge green screen set yet to become Slave One and the surrounding Kamino environment, at FOX STUDIOS, Australia in 2000, for this intriguing behind the scenes angle from EPISODE II.
Tuesday, 14 January 2014
A few years ago I saw a small thumbnail of this excellent conceptual poster idea for THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK - a fine example of a still in production film, way back in 1979, being locked down with regards to what its most important showcase publicity elements would be - and had been trying to track it down. Fortunately, the excellent Star Wars Archives FACEBOOK page recently got hold of a scan of it, and here it is...
If anyone knows who the artist is, please get in touch...
Saturday, 11 January 2014
Everyone's favourite Jedi killer and former Sith, Darth Maul, looks set to be the ultimate bull in a china shop all over again this year with two action packed, deadly adventures coming to the Expanded Universe book and comic domains. First off is Joe Shreiber's return to STAR WARS after the success of DEATHTROOPERS and RED HARVEST, as the horned baddie takes on the inmates of a space prison in the pre-prequel MAUL: LOCKDOWN this February in the UK from Century Publishing, whilst fans of THE CLONE WARS animated TV series will ultimately discover his fate after being given millions of electric shock volts from former boss Darth Sidious-the true master of the Dark Side- following the cataclysmic, game-changing events of the Season Five episode The Lawless, with a special DARK HORSE comic series, Darth Maul, Son of Dathomir, based on a four-episode arc originally planned for the series sadly uncompleted sixth season. Let battle commence!
Get the book here: Lockdown: Star Wars (Maul): Amazon.co.uk: Joe Schreiber, Alexander Irvine: Books
STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS Final Darth Maul Story Releasing - in Comics! | Newsarama.com
Wednesday, 1 January 2014
Its a new year, and a new beginning for the STAR WARS saga, as the next trilogy- Episodes VII to IX- begin filming from this spring. The openings of each previous first adventure in their respective trilogies have taken us to exotic worlds, namely Tatooine then Naboo. But where will new writer/director J.J. Abrams creatively deliver us this time round?
Here's a lovely story so far trailer to get us all in the mood for what will surely be a very exciting and hopefully rewarding return to a galaxy a long time ago, far far away...
Star Wars: Original Trilogy - Epic Retrospective - YouTube