Sunday 30 September 2018


Think you know everything about your live action and animated STAR WARS adventures, and the recently rebooted and revised Expanded Universe? Well, think again, as the all-new English translation of the French hit STAR WARS: Geektionary: The Galaxy from A to Z debuts in the UK, packed with lovely illustrations, courtesy of EGMONT.

Here are the details:

From Alderaan to Zuckuss, the Geektionary is the definitive guide to Star Wars. A must-have gift for any fan.
Satisfy your inner geek with this Star Wars A-Z. Explore the rich history of the Star Wars universe, with entries on the Jedi Order, Sith Order, the rise of the Galactic Empire and the struggle of the Resistance.
This comprehensive dictionary details the epic battles of Scarrif, Endor, Yavin and Naboo. Travel across the galaxy with entries on the jungle world of Dagobah, the desert planets of Jakku and Tattooine, and the urban sprawl of Coruscant. Dive into biopics of some of the best-known characters in the Star Warscanon, as well as some of the lesser known players including Yoda, Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker, Wicket the Ewok, and Zuckuss the bounty hunter. Learn about the various types and classes of starfighters, cruisers and star destroyers. Study a range of alien species including Wookiees, Teedos and the fearsome rathtar! And brush up on your droid knowledge with articles on C-3PO, R2-D2, K-2SO, and of course BB8.
With its stunning silver foil cover, portable size and over 400 pages of illustrated entries, the Geektionary is the perfect gift for old and new Star Wars fans.
Get it here:

Saturday 29 September 2018


Newly arrived on Savareen, our heroes make their way back to the small settlement located at the refining colony, though Chewbacca's instincts for sensing potential trouble ahead are as as good as ever, in this scene from Solo: A Star Wars Story, out now on Blu-ray and DVD.

US Target stores release with exclusives.

Friday 28 September 2018


The battle on Takodana rages on, as fugitive Finn, egged on by Maz Kanata, finally decides to make his stand and fight his former First Order Stormtrooper colleagues with the ancient weapon of his once enemy. But sure enough, a former friend, bitter and ready for payback, soon comes into the path of conflict. A scene of conflict from The Force Awakens strikingly rendered by Brian Rood.

Thursday 27 September 2018


It's re-match time between Han Solo and card shark sports legend Lando Calrissian at the tropical jungle landscape realms of Numidian Prime. And once again the Sabaac high stakes are for the top prize that is the Millennium Falcon. But will Lando's 'ace in the hole' trick once more come to his aid?

A great shot of Donald Glover as the smooth Lando Calrissian from Solo: A Star Wars Story, out now on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital.

Wednesday 26 September 2018


Have camera will travel! Gary Kurtz on location in Norway for The Empire Strikes Back. Image via Damien Slattery/Facebook.

STAR WARS AFICIONADO continues its visual archive celebration of the work and dedication of the late producer Gary Kurtz to the Star Wars saga, who sadly passed away last Sunday. This final part concentrates on his accomplished creative and artistic contribution for the film that many fans consider to be the finest entry of all: The Empire Strikes Back.

Part One:

Archive material:

(12) Star Wars discussed on BBC Heart of the Matter in 1980 - YouTube

With thanks to Chris Baker for selected imagery.

Enjoying a quiet break between takes with director Irvin Kershner in Norway.

Working out the set arrangements on the all-new Star Wars Stage at Elstree, with Ralph McQuarrie, Norman Reynolds and a bearded Peter Suschitzky.

A genuine creative dream team: Kershner and Kurtz with the newly arrived in London George Lucas and Lawrence Kasdan.

Ironing out the script with the main stars at Elstree.

Harrison welcomes Lucas and Paul Hirsch outside the Falcon interior set.

Supervising a camera test with a lighting double filling in for Dave Prowse.

Kurtz on the Bespin set with his co-stars Hamill and Fisher. Image: Kurtz/Joiner Archive.

Working out camera angles on the nearly finished Rebel hangar set at Elstree.

Taking his turn on the prop Tauntaun.

The launch of the new stage to the press, alongside Ford and Kurtz.

Kurtz on the impressive set with the newly built Falcon vessel in the background.

Clowning around with their producer on the Medical Frigate set.

Attending to Hamill's injury make-up in backlot pick-ups at Elstree. Image: Kurtz/Joiner Archive.

Helping Mark through the long and arduous shoot on the Dagobah set, with a dummy Yoda seen here.

At one of the sound/music recording sessions, also with Robert Watts.

All together for the Washington D.C. charity premiere of TESB.

All suited up with an unknown young fan for the London Royal Premiere-May 1980.

Kurtz, Marilou and Mark Hamill with Princess Margaret.

Mark clowns around as Kurtz and Billy Dee Williams look more somber at a press launch.

Happy days promoting TESB in Japan.

Friends reunited at the launch of the final VHS version of the unaltered trilogy in London, circa 1995.

Tuesday 25 September 2018


Ready to capture the next scene: the late Gary Kurtz at Shepperton Studios in 1976 for Star Wars.

In my eyes, and despite the many problems and hurdles of getting the Classic Trilogy to the screen, Gary Kurtz was the best producer of the entire Star Wars saga by far- the man who was there almost from its conception alongside writer/creator George Lucas, and whom was to prove himself a keen, meticulous, intelligent and respectful custodian of it during and after its release, and especially when it went on to become a phenomenon. Gary Kurtz sadly passed away last Sunday 23rd September after a year-long battle with cancer. We send our deepest condolences to his family and friends, and all fans worldwide will miss yet celebrate his presence linked to the still-evolving franchise.

Classic interview footage:

French 1977 TV interview:

Retrospective (2017):

As AFICIONADO Editor, I got to meet Mister Kurtz four times over the course of ten years and always found him a well-mannered, professional and very interesting man, if still coming across as a little shy at times. Over those four encounters in halls and behind convention tables, I probably asked him way too many behind the scenes questions needed to fill out the blanks in the behind the scenes history of the original Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back than I should have, but he always responded in kind and in such great detail that proved enlightening and fascinating. We really, truly don't appreciate how difficult it was getting those first two films made back in the day, and his contribution to preserving the films by the time they were relaunched with The Special Editions in 1997.

The Kurtz/Joiner Archive tribute:

Recent tributes:

As a tribute to the late producer, AFICIONADO presents a two-part photo selection of him at work primarily from 1976 to 1980, in which we've tried where possible to pick images that haven't been as seen or as well used in comparison to those many out there on other tribute pages. We hope you enjoy them. Thank you, Gary Kurtz, for being one of the most important makers and enthusiasts of movie magic!

A fine creative partnership- Kurtz and Lucas circa 1973.

With Sir Alec and Lady Merula Guinness on location for Star Wars in March 1976.

With daughters Tiffany and Melissa as Jawas, alongside wife Meredith, on location in Tunisia, behind the Jawa Sandcrawler scaffold prop- March 1976. 

On location for the filming of Tatooine's Dune Sea sequence.

With Lucas and UK cinematographer Gil Taylor behind the camera.

The on-location Artoo Detoo three legged prop designed to be pulled on piano/fishing wire.

With the UK camera crew and assistant directors at Star Wars Canyon.

Celebrating Sir Alec Guinness's April 1976 birthday in Djerba, near the end of location filming.

Filming Luke's deleted scene arrival at Tosche Station. Image: Kurtz/Joiner Archive.

Together at Shepperton Studios for the May 1976 medal ceremony shooting.

With stars Hamill and Ford at Shepperton between takes. Image: Kurtz/Joiner Archive.

Ever the talented lensman, Kurtz takes many key publicity images from the floor during filming.

Back in the US at ILM late 1976, enjoying the promising dailies effects footage with the youthful team.

Capturing some now classic masked alien reference images- January 1977.

Checking over to-be-released publicity images with Charles Lippincott (far right).

Checking an image that may need cropping before release.

The now pop culture history Mann's Chinese Theatre footsteps cementing event from Summer 1977, of Gary Kurtz with a presumed Kermit Eller as Darth Vader.

Anthony Daniels as C-3PO signs next.

And the remote controlled R2-D2 prop.

On the long and gruelling promotional tour of the US and International territories of 1977.

Previous AFICIONADO coverage: