Thursday 31 March 2022

THE CLONE WARS: LIVING THE DREAM!


Within his pirate base on Florrum, that Weequay scoundrel Hondo Ohnaka is enjoying the fruits of being a pirate leader, before Ahsoka and her young Jedi padawans come along to cause chaos, in The Clone Wars Season Five love-it-or-hate-it episode, Bound for Rescue.

With the recent acclaimed live-action debuts of the Inquisitors and Cad Bane, let's hope its not too long before the lovable rogue is active anew somewhere in the Disney+ series pipeline.

Tuesday 29 March 2022

CLASSIC INDY: DECIPHERING THE OXLEY CODE!


Now held captive by the Russians, Indy tries to work out the mystery visual language linked to the location of El Dorado referenced by his mentally incapacitated friend and mentor, Harold Oxley, in a memorable moment for the under-used Sir John Hurt, during the events of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

Sunday 27 March 2022

'OBI-WAN KENOBI' - LATEST NEWS (1)

Concept art for the epic re-match between old friends now bitter enemies...

The next phase in the bridging between Prequel and Original Trilogy legends continues apace with the soon to be seen Obi-Wan Kenobi event TV series, and its sure to be thrilling continuing conflicts between the self-exiled Jedi and the Sith monster Darth Vader, coming May 25th, 2022 exclusively on Disney+

The latest news:


Saturday 26 March 2022

OUT THIS MONTH IN UK PAPERBACK: STAR WARS - DOCTOR APHRA'


Surely one of the most popular all-new characters created and marketed in this post Disney-purchased iteration of the Expanded Universe, the roguish Doctor Aphra, very much a quirkier, more hip female Star Wars franchise version of Indiana Jones, is back in archaeological action, and once again landing herself in all kinds of explosive trouble across the galaxy within Sarah Kuhn's pacy audio drama converted to scripted paperback edition - Doctor Aphra, available from 31th March, 2202.

Here's the Penguin Books publishing blurb: 

Dr. Aphra teams up with Darth Vader himself in this original script of the thrilling Star Wars audiobook production.

Dr. Chelli Lona Aphra, rogue archaeologist, is in trouble again.

A pioneer in the field of criminal xenoarchaeology, Aphra recognizes no law, has no fear, and possesses no impulse control. To her, the true worth of the galactic relics she discovers isn't found in a museum but in an arsenal. This viewpoint has led to a lot of misunderstandings. After her latest plan goes horribly wrong, her roguish ways are on the verge of catching up to her. That's when suddenly Darth Vader, terror of the galaxy, swoops in with his lightsaber and...saves her life?

Don't get her wrong--it's not like she's ungrateful. Sure, her new boss is a lord of the Sith. And okay, she may have just become a pawn in a deadly game being played by him and his boss, who happens to be the Galactic Emperor. And yes, the life expectancy of anyone who disappoints Vader can be measured in seconds.

But she's back doing what she does best. She's got a ship to fly, a heist to pull, and two unorthodox but effective metal buddies: Triple-Zero, a protocol droid specializing in etiquette, customs, translation, and torture, and BT-1, anastromech loaded with enough firepower to take down a battlecruiser. Together, they might just find a way to get the job done and avoid the deadly performance review that waits at its conclusion.


Just kidding. She's doomed.

Friday 25 March 2022

CLASSIC IMAGE: MAKING GENERATIONAL PLANS...


Aboard Bail Organa's space faring Councillor Ship, within an impressive production design continuation by Gavin Bocquet honoring the late John Barry's original and iconic set designs for A New Hope, the Alderaanian diplomat discusses the future of the Skywalker children with Master Yoda and Obi-Wan Kenbi during the sad but ultimately hopeful finale to EPISODE III.

Wednesday 23 March 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES: INSIDE THE EMPEROR'S FINEST!

Image: via Star Wars Screen Caps.

Captured inside the Endor bunker, our Rebel heroes are now taken outside to witness the immensity of the enemy forces around them, in this classic moment from Return of the Jedi.

Though many of the Imperials in the scene were played by then out of work local lumberjacks and factory men in the Redwoods during US location filming in April/May 1982, there would also be a sizeable presence of talented UK/US stuntmen and one lone equally accomplished UK stuntwoman (Tracey Eddon, playing both Rebel Commando and, suffering for her art, forced into an Imperial Stormtrooper costume) ready for the subsequent major action sequences against the surprise Ewok enemy. Amongst those dutiful but ultimately defeated on screen Imperial Stormtroopers would be the late Frank Henson, whom Aficionado was sad to hear of his passing a while back.

Ted Grossman, Larry Holt and Julius LeFlore. Image: Larry Holt.

Larry Holt would play both a Stormtrooper and Rebel Commando in location filming. Image: Larry Holt.

Frank Henson and buddy.


Two images featuring Larry Holt, Julius LeFlore, Ted Grossman and an unknown stunt actor? Image: Larry Holt.

Bob Yerkes, Dan Zormeier as Peter Mayhew's stand-in, and Larry Holt. Image: Larry Holt.

Monday 21 March 2022

'ATTACK' AT 20: INTRODUCING HAYDEN CHRISTENSEN...


"(I) couldn't define for myself what I was feeling when I found out that I got the part (of Anakin Skywalker). It was a week of just sheer bliss and I got to work." 

HAYDEN CHRISTENSEN UPON GETTING THE NEWS THAT HE’D WON THE ROLE OF ANAKIN SKYWALKER. INTRNET QUOTE - 2000 - SOURCE UNKNOWN 

“Hayden was really cast for the next movie (EPISODE III), not this movie. What attracted me to him was the fact that he had this underlying kind of James Dean angst going on. Obviously, the fun one is the next one. Because the next one is where it really pays off.” 

 GEORGE LUCAS - PREMIERE MAGAZINE -JUNE 2002

“Anakin is overly confident, and too sure of himself. A part of his mentality is if he is the greatest Jedi ever why does he have to follow everyone’s guidance? It’s that confidence that makes for the propulsion towards the Dark Side. I thought it was very well justified how he’s going to go bad. I thought in many ways it kind of paralleled how any human being would gradually, through their reaction to certain happening, actually go bad.” 

HAYDEN - STAR WARS UK FAN CLUB – JEDI JOURNAL ISSUE 3.2 - SUMMER 2002

Saturday 19 March 2022

ILM BEHIND THE SCENES: PAINTING THE COLD CLIMES OF HOTH!

An ILM technician feels the cold in this humorous image.

Bringing to life at ILM the many establishing scenes set during the opening stages of battle and drama on the ice planet of Hoth would take all kinds of skillsets and techniques from a variety of in-house talents, most notably by the superb use of background paintings and matte work achieved by the likes of veteran artist Ralph McQuarrie and newcomers like Michael Pangrazio, whose impressive work was notably showcased in enhancing the model filming/ stop motion work then underway for The Empire Strikes Back.

Here's a showcase look at the behind the scenes work involved...

Harrison Ellenshaw pulls out a matte painting used at the start of the snow battle.

As seen in the film from the Walker cockpit. Image: Star Wars Screen Caps.


Another backdrop piece for the snow battle.

Dennis Muren, Phil Tippett with the Tauntaun snowscape, with Mike Pangrazio's painted backdrop.



Two shots of Michael Pangrazio at work.

Backdrop used for the Snowspeeder search for the missing Luke and Han on Hoth.


Ralph McQuarrie at work on a Rebel base ice cave exterior.

Work continues on the painting.

It looks like a revised or alternate/similar matte painting design was used in the final film for the Rebel base entrance, placed over establishing footage at the Norway-filmed glacier trench. Image: Star Wars Screen Caps.

And on an overall Hoth location backdrop.


Thursday 17 March 2022

CLASSIC IMAGE: COSTUMED CHARM!


Being fictional royalty (of a sort) doesn't mean you can't have fun, as a very young Natalie Portman proves in this lovely posed image of the actress, wearing her most famous Queen Amidala costume. Originally taken during 1999 EPISODE I magazine publicity, it was exclusively used in the US Premiere film title, from respected British photographer Nigel Parry.

Tuesday 15 March 2022

'STAR WARS' AT 45: A TATOOINE DAY IN THE LIFE...

At work within the distant vaporator fields, Luke Skywalker is soon distracted by a sight in the skies above.

With a very young Luke Skywalker at the Lars Homestead now revealed in the first teaser trailer for the upcoming Obi-Wan Kenobi mini-series, here's a look back to the icon hero's originally planned introduction in the original Star Wars of 1977- the memorable sequence, now a legendary deleted scene, that would see a bored Luke working to repair a moisture vaporator, with help from a soon malfunctioning Treadwell droid buddy, out in the Tatooine wilderness. Shot at the Tunisian salt flats of Nefta between 23rd and 25th March, 1976, Luke's task is interrupted via a mysterious sight in the clouds...


Luke, wearing a floppy goggle hat that would not be seen in the completed film, adjusts a control box linked to the malfunctioning vaporator.


Great deleted establishing image.

Temporary lens flare for visual reference -it was planned that ILM would provide an optical insert replacement had the scene not been deleted relatively early in the film's US post production phase.

Looking up, distracted.


Another scene from the deleted footage.


Posed publicity image from the scene.

Close-in posed image of Luke using his macrobinoculars.

Luke leaves the now malfunctioning Treadwell to its own devices.

Publicity image taken linked to the scene.


A great behind the scenes shot captured between takes. Note the technician attending to the Treadwell droid. Image: Kurtz/Joiner Archive.

Treadwell droid photo image taken on Death Star set at Elstree during Summer 1976- presumably for later potential magazine publicity linked to John Stears' work on the film.

The blue Treadwell would also return for active duty in The Empire Strikes Back, presumably the original version built by John Stears and his UK practical effects team (held in storage after prior 1976 filming?), for a fun little moment atop the Millennium Falcon, where it would confer with an irritated Han Solo within the Hoth Rebel base.

The deleted scene as rendered by Roy Thomas and Howard Chaykin for the original Star Wars Marvel Comics adaptation, published from the end of 1976 onwards.

And here's several posed images linked to Luke at the vaporators.

Luke poses for some repair work.

A shot not originally released in the seventies, showing Luke without his leg 'wrappings'.

This posed image of Luke wearing his poncho was likely taken during a filming break at one of the Lars Homestead vaporators, later in the Tunisian filming.



Sunday 13 March 2022

THE CLONE WARS: A MATTER OF ALLEGIANCE!


Yoda's efforts in persuading the noble Toydarian King Katuunku to join the fight against the Separatists looks set to bear fruit, though opposing force Sith Assassin Asajj Ventress has other plans, during the exciting finale to the memorable opening episode of The Clone Wars animated series, Ambush.




Saturday 12 March 2022

'INDY V' WRAPS...

 

Posted 27th February, 2022.

After previous long problems from injuries and Covid, Indy V has finally finished filming at Pinewood Studios. Now the post production journey begins, of which the filmmaker will have plenty of time to finesse the film and ready its surely exciting promotional materials now that it's originally planned release date has been delayed until 2023!