Tuesday 20 October 2015


Within the vast stretches of the Jakku wastelands, a firm friendship begins between the previously singular scavenger Rey and the now isolated droid BB-8, in a very special moment from THE FORCE AWAKENS.

Sunday 18 October 2015


Packed to the brim with characters and spaceships, with the final trailer arriving on Monday/Tuesday! Nice to see Hamill, Fisher and Ford getting top billing once again.

Full US details here of screenings and seven film AMC marathon: Star Wars: The Force Awakens Theatrical Poster First Look, In-theater Exclusives and More | StarWars.com

UK tickets on sale tomorrow (19th October) from 8am onwards: Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Cinema Screenings & Ticket Booking - The Official Showtimes Destination

STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS opens in UK cinemas from December 17th, 2015


Acting as a timely companion to the upcoming, surely incredible new adrenaline-fuelled BATTLEFRONT video game, and a fine nod to the kind of tie-ins so enjoyed by fans during 1996's SHADOWS OF THE EMPIRE event, Alexander Freed's canon novel of an elite group of Rebel soldiers- Twilight Company - caught in heavy and overwhelming battle against the Empire's immense armries, arrives in formidable hardback from CENTURY PUBLISHING UK this 5th November, 2015 - bringing spectacular STAR WARS universe fireworks to Bonfire Night!

Here's the publicity blurb:

A companion novel inspired by the hotly anticipated videogame Star Wars: Battlefront, this action-packed adventure follows a squad of soldiers caught in the trenches of the ultimate galactic war between good and evil.

The bravest soldiers. The toughest warriors. The ultimate survivors.

Among the stars and across the vast expanses of space, the Galactic Civil War rages. On the battlefields of multiple worlds in the Mid Rim, legions of ruthless stormtroopers—bent on crushing resistance to the Empire wherever it arises—are waging close and brutal combat against an armada of freedom fighters. In the streets and alleys of ravaged cities, the front-line forces of the Rebel Alliance are taking the fight to the enemy, pushing deeper into Imperial territory and grappling with the savage flesh-and-blood realities of war on the ground.
Leading the charge are the soldiers—men and women, human and nonhuman—of the Sixty-First Mobile Infantry, better known as Twilight Company. Hard-bitten, war-weary, and ferociously loyal to one another, the members of this renegade outfit doggedly survive where others perish, and defiance is their most powerful weapon against the deadliest odds. When orders come down for the rebels to fall back in the face of superior opposition numbers and firepower, Twilight reluctantly complies. Then an unlikely ally radically changes the strategic equation—and gives the Alliance’s hardest-fighting warriors a crucial chance to turn retreat into resurgence.
Orders or not, alone and outgunned but unbowed, Twilight Company locks, loads, and prepares to make its boldest maneuver—trading down-and-dirty battle in the trenches for a game-changing strike at the ultimate target: the very heart of the Empire’s military machine.

Get the book here: Star Wars: Battlefront: Twilight Company (Star Wars Battlefront Tie in): Amazon.co.uk: Alex Freed: 9781780893655: Books

The latest STAR WARS BATTLEFRONT game for Xbox One, from EA, arrives November 19th, 2015:

Star Wars Battlefront Reveal Trailer - YouTube
Star Wars Battlefront | Official Trailer |E3 2014 - YouTube
Star Wars Battlefront: Co-Op Missions Gameplay Reveal | E3 2015 “Survival Mode” on Tatooine - YouTube

Get the game here: Star Wars: Battlefront (Xbox One): Amazon.co.uk: PC & Video Games

Saturday 17 October 2015


How to train your Rancor, the Muren/Tippett method!

True special effects wizards Dennis Muren and Phil Tippett congratulate an old friend on its successfully completing its filming at the ILM facility in San Francisco for RETURN OF THE JEDI. Still vital players in the field of visual effects in all areas, Muren would also go onto contribute greatly on the later STAR WARS Prequels for George Lucas, whilst Tippett would launch his own incredible CGI and puppet/stop motion facility, which particularly came to the fore with the under appreciated cult classic STARSHIP TROOPERS and the realisation of the legendary Velociraptor creatures showcased in the original, ground-breaking JURASSIC PARK.

Which one's first on this raptor's menu?! Image: UNIVERSAL PICTURES.

Tippett continued to be an adviser on JP's subsequent sequels, especially for the recent franchise re-launched, world box-office juggernaut JURASSIC WORLD (out now on Blu-ray and DVD from UNIVERSAL HOME ENTERTAINMENT), pictured above with future STAR WARS EPISODE IX director Colin Trevorrow and a certain carnivorous raptor, but there's also been a much welcome return to the STAR WARS universe with the upcoming THE FORCE AWAKENS, believed to have created an all-new alien holo-chess sequence set aboard the Millennium Falcon, reminiscent to the one he and buddy Jon Berg conceived and manipulated back in 1977!

Trailer: JURASSIC WORLD Official FINAL Trailer (2015) - YouTube


Get hold of the exciting, monster-packed JURASSIC WORLD on Blu-ray here: Jurassic World [Blu-ray] [2015] [Region Free]: Amazon.co.uk: Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Judy Greer, Jake Johnson, Colin Trevorrow: DVD & Blu-ray

Friday 16 October 2015


Now fully consigned to his fate and duty to his Emperor, the to-be-feared breathing mask- the final all-important part of Darth Vader's new psychological make-up of hatred and violence- is lowered and locked into place, in this now iconic moment from EPISODE III, realised largely through model work than CGI.

Thursday 15 October 2015


In their swift and maneuvarable Starfighter, Obi-Wan Kenobi and trusty droid R4 narrowly avoid the immense destruction caused by a sonic blast, in this memorable Geonosis asteroid chase scene from EPISODE II.

Wednesday 14 October 2015


He may have the stroppy, blaster-inflicted remains of C-3PO weightily attached to his back, but nothing will get in Chewbacca's way as he attempts to rescue his best friend Han Solo from the clutches of Boba Fett, during the tense and exciting finale to THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK.

Chewbacca finally becomes the star of his own eagerly awaited five issue mini-series MARVEL COMIC, set between the events of EPISODEs IV and V, out this week (14th October, 2015).

Open Phil Noto's Star Wars Sketchbook | News | Marvel.com
Open Phil Noto's Chewbacca Sketchbook, Part 2 | StarWars.com

Tuesday 13 October 2015


Battle beyond the stars! Darth Vader seeks the STAR WARS REBELS. All images: © 2015 & TM Lucasfilm Ltd.

Note: This feature contains potential SPOILERS...

The iconic return of big baddie Darth Vader and animated favourite heroine Ahsoka Tano looks set to be just a small part of the overall grand dessert for fans that is the all-new second season of STAR WARS REBELS, debuting on the DISNEY XD platform this week (from the 14th October in the US, and Saturday 17th, at 9am, in the UK). Prepare for the out of the wilderness, old but certainly not obsolete Captain Rex, alongside two of his loyal former Clone Troopers, coming back to sprightly action, plus that wily and scheming pirate Hondo Ohnaka, soon taking a liking to former rascal and young Jedi-to-be Ezra Bridger. On planets beyond Lothal, there's battles with Imperial Walkers, the testing of a protoype B-wing, and the emergence of two unique new power-vying Inquisitors dispatched by Vader and the Empire to find and destroy our brotherhood of the brave: the playfully deadly Seventh Sister (voiced by BUFFY's Sarah Michelle Gellar) and the formidable Fifth Brother. All this and much, much more in this longer-run season.

Kanan and his dedicated crew return.
Out of hiding! In a sure crowd-pleasing moment, Ahsoka Tano returns to battle!
Ezra meets the older, ORDER 66 conflicted Captain Rex.
New baddies on the block: the Fifth Brother and the Seventh Sister!

Star Wars Rebels Season Two NYCC 2015 Trailer (Official) - YouTube
Star Wars Rebels Season Two Trailer (Official) - YouTube
The Might of the Empire Grows and Fan Favorites Debut in New Episodes of Star Wars Rebels Season 2 | StarWars.com
This Season on Star Wars Rebels - Star Wars Rebels Season 2 Trailer - YouTube
Star Wars Rebels - Ashley Eckstein Season 2 Interview - NYCC 2015 - YouTube
Star Wars: Rebels Season 1: Director Talks Season 2 Blu-ray/DVD Bonus Feature - YouTube
Sarah Michelle Gellar's 'Star Wars Rebels' Character Revealed! | The Star Wars Underworld
Star Wars Rebels Season Two Preview at New York Comic Con - UPDATED! | StarWars.com
12345 - YouTube
Rumor: 'Star Wars Rebels' Season Two Episode Names & Descriptions Revealed | The Star Wars Underworld
Star Wars Rebels Magazine Reveals New Inquisitors | The Star Wars Underworld
NYCC: 'Star Wars Rebels' Cast & Co-Creator Look to Season 2 & Beyond - Spinoff Online - TV, Film, and Entertainment News DailySpinoff Online – TV, Film, and Entertainment News Daily

A striking new Imperial warship: the Immobilizer!
David and Goliath, but with Imperial Walkers!
Hera tests a new hope for the Rebels: a B-Wing Fighter!

Oh, and by season's end, don't be too surprised at seeing a certain young, very young, plucky Alderaanian senator and future Rebel Alliance veteran becoming linked to the team...

OFFICIAL UK SITE:  Star Wars Rebels | Home | Official Disney UK

Also available on DVD.

STAR WARS REBELS Season One is out now on Blu-ray and DVD. Get it here:
Star Wars Rebels [Blu-ray] [Region Free]: Amazon.co.uk: DVD & Blu-ray


Monday 12 October 2015


On a search and destroy mission for rumoured underwater villages, a force of Battle Droids and accompanying Troop Transports enter Naboo's vast and murky swamp areas, in this memorable conceptual art from Doug Chiang for EPISODE I.

Doug Chiang's art appearing on the cover of THE ART OF THE FORCE AWAKENS. Image: Abrams Books,

We can't wait to see what visual wonders Mister Chiang, and Iain McCaig, will bring to THE FORCE AWAKENS.

The Art of Doug Chiang [Star Wars Edition] - YouTube

Doug Chiang and Christian Alzmann Interview with StarWars.com | Star Wars Celebration Anaheim - YouTube

Doug Chiang and Iain McCaig Interview with Warwick Davis | Star Wars Celebration Europe - YouTube

Saturday 10 October 2015


Composition by Steve Anderson for LUCASFILM/DISNEY.

We're in that unique period now that is the calm before the storm, as rumours abound that the third (and final) trailer for THE FORCE AWAKENS is due October 19th, 2015. Until then, to further get us in the mood, here's another news round-up linked to the upcoming sequels:

Star Wars: The Force Awakens World Premiere Date And Location Revealed | Comicbook.com
Kathleen Kennedy Confirms Saga Films are About 'The Skywalker Family' | The Star Wars Underworld
The Force Flows at New York Comic Con 2015! | StarWars.com
J.J. Abrams: “Any Act of Creation is a Leap of Faith” | Vanity Fair
TheForce.net: First Han Solo Figure From Star Wars The Force Awakens Is Revealed At Hasbro Party In NYC
Is Benicio Del Toro a Jedi? Oscar winner wants a pink lightsaber in Star Wars: Episode 8
Rumor: Details About Finn's Backstory in 'The Force Awakens' | The Star Wars Underworld
'Star Wars' Star John Boyega: I'm Being Mentored by Robert Downey Jr. - Hollywood Reporter
John Boyega on playing a black Stormtrooper: The backlash was 'unnecessary' | EW.com
Rumor: Gugu Mbatha-Raw Added to Shortlist for 'Substantial' Episode VIII Role | The Star Wars Underworld
Max Von Sydow’s Star Wars 7 Role Revealed? - Yahoo Movies UK
Domhnall Gleeson says Star Wars’ General Hux is “merciless” | GamesRadar
New Star Wars: The Force Awakens Toy Reveals Dark Side of BB-8 - Yahoo Movies UK
Star Wars 7 spoilers revealed in trading cards? | moviepilot.com
C-3PO actor Anthony Daniels Has Some Harsh Words For Luke Skywalker - Yahoo Movies UK
A Galaxy of Star Wars: The Force Awakens Books Coming December 18 - First Look! | StarWars.com
Rumor: 'The Force Awakens' Plot Synopsis Leaked | The Star Wars Underworld
NoDisneyLogo - Star Wars Junk


And let's not forget the beautiful new UK ROYAL MAIL stamp set, featuring characters from across the entire saga, available from 20th October: STAR WARS™ at Royal Mail Shop

New Star Wars stamps released ahead of The Force Awakens - BBC Newsbeat

And the new spaceship stamp collage from ROYAL MAIL via THE WESTMINSTER COLLECTION: Own the NEW Royal Mail Star Wars Stamps on a Limited Edition Collector Card

Friday 9 October 2015


Taking a break: Carrie Fisher on the Trash Compactor set. All images: Ann Skinner/BFI.

Its an uncomfortable time for our main actors filming their scenes within the flotsum and jetsum of the Death Star Trash Compactor set. With the exception of Peter Mayhew's Chewbacca, standing on a mostly concealed plank support near the pressure hatch door (so as not to get the expensive yak-hair costume too wet and dirty), all the actors are wearing tight rubber diving suits under their costumes, its hot under the studio lights, and the water is soon smelly and disgusting. So much so with the latter that, after repeated takes going down into the water to simulate the attack of the Dianoga creature (the practical prop tentacle changed from its originally planned version), plus a further ducking from an unhappy George Lucas (who didn't find one of the actor's on-set singalong jokes funny!), Mark Hamill would get a resultant serious eye infection that would cause some problems later in the filming schedule.

Ultimately, the finished sequence would be one of the highlights of the film, though the opening half of John Williams scored music was unused in post production (though apparently staying in its entirety for the sequence during the film's original German theatrical screenings back in 1977/78), eventually getting an official worldwide airing as part of A New Hope: Special Edition's newly inserted CGI scene of Luke and company's arrival into Mos Eisley.

Above and below are some of the continuity Polaroid pictures from the early Summer 1976 filming at Elstree, courtesy of the film's original Script Supervisor Ann Skinner, whose collection is now a part of the prestigious BFI Archive.

Trouble in the Trash Compactor room.
Luke is attacked by the Dianoga!
Han searches for the submerged Luke.
The walls are moving!
Can the support hold?

With thanks to Ann Skinner and the BFI.

Wednesday 7 October 2015


A time for action! STAR WARS REBELS begins! All Images: © 2015 & TM Lucasfilm Ltd. 

A sure-fire hit with the modern STAR WARS generation, and deliberately crafted to appeal to fans loving the colour, unique design, overall fun and spirited action of the Classic Trilogy universe of heroes and villains, that unique band of STAR WARS REBELS bring their fifteen-episode premiere year of excitement to Blu-ray and DVD, courtesy of LUCASFILM and DISNEY. Created by film writer/producer Simon Kinberg, alongside THE CLONE WARS top supervising animation director Dave Filoni, and producer Carrie Beck, REBELS tells the ROBIN HOOD meets FIREFLY-esque story/format of a mismatched "family" of resistance fighters, whom, with their latest recruit in street urchin Ezra Bridger- a boy gifted by the powers of that mysterious Force, bring all kinds of inventive means and plucky heroism towards their constant fight against the mighty Empire that has enslaved the galaxy and controls their particular spatial area in the Lothal system. Having ignited a spark of rebellion, they soon catch the attention of some of the Empire's most formidable and brutal enforcers, including spiteful special agent Kallus, the lightsaber wielding killer known as the Grand Inquisitor, and later on the gruesome visaged Grand Moff Tarkin, whose cruelty and ruthless service of the Emperor and his harsh doctrine has been known and feared since the end of the all-consuming Clone Wars.

Star Wars Rebels Extended Trailer (Official) - YouTube
Trailer: Star Wars: Rebels - Season 1 - YouTube
Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season One on Blu-ray and DVD - YouTube
Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season One Coming September 1 | StarWars.com

The heroes of STAR WARS REBELS.

With the series pilot episode, Ezra Bridger, an orphan who's had to survive on his own instincts and growing latent skills, is the launching point into this universe, set five years before the events of the original STAR WARS. Through him we soon meet his mentor in the youthfully bold rebel leader and father-figure that is Kanan Jarrus, a Jedi who, these past fourteen years, has had no choice but to keep his incredible abilities concealed and under the radar since the apocalyptic ORDER 66 destruction of the Jedi Knights. Until, that is, the arrival of Ezra- a kindred spirit whom he soon identifies with, another brother in the Force, together sharing their potential to truly fight back against the corruptive Sith and their legion forces. Keeping Kanan "honest" is his friend, lover and skilled pilot of their modified freighter, The Ghost, Twi-lek pilot Hera Syndulla (daughter of the famous resistance fighter Cham), dedicated to her man and the rebel cause, very much the mother-hen to their Spectre unit, and knowing much more about the state of the galaxy-wide battle against the Empire than most. Bringing beautiful-looking destruction to a new art form is the plucky graffiti artist from Mandalore, the colourful Sabine Wren, and the almost last of his kind, headstrong put passionate about busting Stormtrooper heads alien that is quirky Zeb Orrelios, who brings muscle and firepower to their against all odds missions. Finally, we can't forget that squat orange Astro Droid that is Chopper- definitely the crankiest and attitude-giving member of the crew, but nonetheless a vital player in his own right, often surprising, delighting and infuriating all at the same time!

Lando Calrissian and Chopper enjoy a quirky adventure in Idiot's Array.

As this family of heroes cements itself, there's run-ins with a shady arms dealer, Vizago, who'd likely sell his own mother to the Imperials were it profitable enough, a bid to liberate a group of enslaved Wookiees from the harsh mines of Kessel, and a tense battle to destroy the propaganda machine that is "Empire Day". Then there's welcome appearances from popular characters across the six live-action films, including charming smoothie Lando Calrissian (Billy Dee Williams), gold-plated C-3PO (Anthony Daniels) and helpful R2-D2, and the important return of Frank Oz as the in-exile diminutive Yoda, offering help and encouragement to Ezra via long distance Force rapport. Plus a very special cameo from THE CLONE WARS version of Obi-Wan Kenobl (as inherited by James Arnold Taylor) for the series opener, truly helping to merge George Lucas's prior animated saga with DISNEY's new vision.

Kanan engages in lethal swordplay with the Grand Inquisitor.

Behind the scenes, the series main voice cast's passion and enthusiasm for STAR WARS is clearly evident (of which Freddie Prinze, Jr. and Vanessa Marshall are particular standouts), whilst further talent adding to the storytelling tapestry of the series includes THE CLONE WARS writer Henry Gilroy. Top visual effects artist Joel Aron and conceptual resident Killian Plunkett continue weaving their production magic, clearly have fun adapting important sections of the Classic Trilogy era into new animated life (including some of the classic toys, like the beloved seventies standout, the Imperial Troop Transport), and composer Kevin Kiner cleverly adapts and fuses sections of John Williams memorable music of the film series into his work, if sometimes feeling a little over gratuitous.

TIE fighters and Rebel vessels engage for the spectacular season finale.

Beyond the episodes, best seen in crisp and captivating Blu-ray form, the two-disc set's Special Features include all the brief but fun behind the scenes webseries instalments of REBELS RECON, a lively report of the cast and crew making an impression at COMIC CON, the four original shorts introducing the crew of The Ghost, and a near half-hour look back at the key events of Season One leading in to Season Two, and its well deserved and highly anticipated return of dark warrior, Darth Vader, plus a short but exciting featurette of Dave Filoni teasing the new season, with lots of key episode conceptual art and an extended trailer packed full of exciting moments (mysterious new Inquisitors, Captain Rex, and a prototype B-wing fighter!). Finally, there's an HD transfer of the second THE FORCE AWAKENS trailer, of which this series, in many ways, is a valuable set-up for.

AFICIONADO RATING (Episodes and Special Features). A promising start to the series run, very much the New Dawn to A New Hope, though we hope, unlike the much-loved, scrapped before its time THE CLONE WARS, that STAR WARS REBELS lasts long enough to get a full and satisfying through line into the Original Trilogy. Fine family entertainment. 7.5 out of 10

In an opening season whose storytelling and animation production improves over the duration, here's a look back at AFICIONADO's top five episodes.

SPARK OF REBELLION (Pilot episode- released on Blu-ray in its two-part "prologue" version, featuring James Earl Jones voicing Darth Vader)

On the far-off Imperial-controlled world of Lothal, lone youth Ezra Bridger discovers his powers as a Jedi Padawan when helping a group of distinctive rebels steal a consignment of food and weapons, followed by a spirited mission that will liberate wookiee slaves from the dreaded spice mines of Kessel.


Caught between good and evil- the return of C-3PO and R2-D2.


Once more out of his depth, protocol droid Threepio, along with perky Artoo Detoo, find themselves unintentionally hooking up with our heroes in stealing a consignment of banned weaponry, of which old enemy Agent Kallus is on the trail and has scores to settle.

Did Jedi Knight Luminara Unduli survive the Clone Wars after all?


Our heroes undertake their boldest and most dangerous mission yet- travelling to the dark world of Stygeon Prime in an attempt to free the decade imprisoned Jedi, Luminara Unduli. But all is not what it seems, as the fearsome Grand Inquisitor initiates his trap...

Agent Kallus and Grand Moff Tarkin plot their next move to capture the Rebels.

CALL TO ACTION (Episode Eleven)

Now tasked with the extermination of this havoc-bringing Rebel cell, the cruel Grand Moff Tarkin brings his tactics of terror to Lothal, capturing Kanan just after he and his party have successfully procured an Imperial communications tower.

Kanan: captured by the Grand Inquisitor!


At the place where Jedi go to die, of which Kanan is being brutally tortured for information, Hera, Ezra and the Ghost team defy the odds, and a trio of Imperial Star Destroyers, in mounting a spectacular rescue mission for their friend above the volcanic world of Mustafar, gaining some unexpected allies in the process, yet also bringing in further enemy retribution in the form of the newly arrived Darth Vader...

The oncoming storm that is Darth Vader!

Star Wars Rebels [Blu-ray] [Region Free]: Amazon.co.uk: DVD & Blu-ray

Also available on DVD: Star Wars Rebels: Spark of Rebellion [DVD]: Amazon.co.uk: DVD & Blu-ray

Official Site: Star Wars Rebels | StarWars.com

With thanks to DISNEY UK for their continued support.

Tuesday 6 October 2015


The cowardly Jedi killer General Grievous makes for an intriguing and villainous cover star to a 2005 issue of the French LUCASFILM magazine.

“I was involved in the sound processing of Grievous’ voice, which we had to do before we even picked an actor. So myself and Chris Scarabosio were asked to come up with a process. Rick McCallum put out a casting package in L.A., Sydney, and London, and we were asked to apply the process to each candidate’s audition, which involved pitch and ring modulation.

So I had been processing theses voices involving the same scene-the one on the bridge with Anakin, Obi-Wan and R2-and Chris encouraged me to give it a shot myself. After I did one, I used an anonymous name and sent it with the rest of the auditions. George picked it.  I knew George would hear it (the accent) so I wanted it to be good. I had done some voice work at ACT, and I had just spent some time on vacation going to Prague and also Moscow and St. Petersburg, I liked that accent. George also mentioned when he was talking about the character that (he) was slightly vampiric, so I kind of went for that. There’s some Bela Lugosi in (there for good measure).


Monday 5 October 2015


Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill have some fun in this great outtake posing for photographer Ralph Nelson, Jr. whilst getting ready to shoot one of RETURN OF THE JEDI's most memorable and widely used publicity images, taken atop the Sail Barge set/platform of Yuma, Arizona, from April 1982.

Sunday 4 October 2015


In the heat and dust of Geonosis, the first conflict in the epic Clone Wars is initiated: batallions of Kamino-created Clone Troopers and technology soon engaged against the insectoid Geonosians and their equally legion droid armies, during the finale to EPISODE II.

Saturday 3 October 2015


A fiery encounter with the Wampa ice creature.

No longer on the dinner menu, Luke Skywalker strikes back against the huge Wampa creature that has captured him, in this original sequence filmed but cut from THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK. Note the insect-like Wampa mask used here- an early idea being that the creature saw via radar-like natural instincts. Because of the nature of the pyrotechnics, we assume stuntman Terry Richards, who played the creature in the scenes of a Wampa attacking the Rebel base, was inside the costume rather than Des Webb, who wore the immense Stuart Freeborn creation, albeit with a different head, during the Norway filming. The scene, planned as an insert shot, was not actually filmed on the cave set but on the Rebel base ice corridor set passage where Richards' Wampa will also terrorise the remote-controlled Artoo Detoo (albeit wearing the original Freeborn creature mask in that footage). If you look at the above shot you can clearly see background technical props from that corridor.

The early mask for the Wampa.
Luke strikes the Wampa with his lightsaber blade rod prop...
...  and the sparks fly!

With the footage of the creature not looking effective on screen in an edited scene assemblage, much of this sequence was refilmed by producer Gary Kurtz and a second unit later in the production schedule, with the Wampa now wearing its cuddly-looking mask from Norway, with shots filmed and used in the finished movie showing the creature facially obscured and its body only partially revealed.

Gary Kurtz (far right) supervises the Wampa re-shoots.

The Empire Strikes Back - Original Wampa Scene - YouTube