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There’s nothing quite like a bit of conflict between former creative partners to make a film’s backstory more interesting. George Lucas and Gary Kurtz famously split many years ago after The Empire Strikes Back, when the direction of the Star Wars movies took a turn that Kurtz didn’t like.

Some stories have been told of the split, and of what Kurtz saw as flaws of the Star Wars series. But now, in honor (might use that word lightly) of this weekend’s Star Wars Celebration V, Kurtz has said quite a lot about what he thinks of the Star Wars saga. Read More »

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Cool Stuff: Star Wars Book Ends

jabbas palace bookend top

Gentle Giant is producing a series of Star Wars bookends, two of which have been announced and are available for preorder: the Trash Compactor scene from A New Hope and Jabba’s Palace scene from Return of the Jedi. And a special Star Wars logo bookends is available exclusively from Borders. Hit the jump for more photos and info.

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LOL: Three Ewok Moon T-Shirt

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We’ve seen a lot of parodies of the three wolf moon t-shirt, but this Star Wars parody might be the best yet. It features three Ewoks from Return of the Jedi and “That’s no moon. It’s a space station.” Available on StarWars.com for $21.99.

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David Lynch Talks About Not Directing Return of the Jedi

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Even the most casual Star Wars and/or David Lynch scholar knows that Lynch was offered a gig directing Return of the Jedi and turned it down. Lynch’s features at that point were Eraserhead and The Elephant Man — both incredible examples of storytelling and world building on relatively controlled budgets. One can only surmise that something along those lines is what Lucas put the job in Lynch’s path.

The fact of not doing the film isn’t something that’s ever been a big deal in the director’s history. For example, it gets only a couple lines in Lynch on Lynch: “I went to meet George Lucas, who had offered me the third Star Wars to direct, and I’ve never even really liked science fiction. I like elements of it, but it needs to be combined with other genres. And, obviously, Star Wars was totally George’s thing.”

Ironically, Lynch went on to make Dune immediately afterward — a film in which science fiction was certainly combined with a lot of other genres, especially in Lynch’s hands. Publicly, he’s never talked much about the Lucas experience, but in mid-November he told the detailed story to a small group. It’s worth a listen. Read More »

david prowse darth vader

During an interview with Equity Magazine, David Prowse, the actor who played (but didn’t voice) Darth Vader in the original Star Wars trilogy, claims that LucasFilm has yet to pay him any residual payments on Return of the Jedi because the the film has yet to make a profit.

“I get these occasional letters from Lucasfilm saying that we regret to inform you that as Return of the Jedi has never gone into profit, we’ve got nothing to send you. Now here we’re talking about one of the biggest releases of all time,” said Prowse. “I don’t want to look like I’m bitching about it,” he said, “but on the other hand, if there’s a pot of gold somewhere that I ought to be having a share of, I would like to see it.”

Of course, Return of the Jedi has grossed over $572 million worldwide, which includes an estimated $88 million when the film was re-released in 1997. So how is it possible that the film has yet to make a profit? Prowse really can’t be serious, can he?

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Cool Stuff: 25th Anniversary Return of the Jedi Villain-Style Poster

It’s the 25th Anniversary of Star Wars – Return of the Jedi. To celebrate, Matt Busch, Lucasfilm, The 501st Great Lakes Garrison, and Paul Michael Kane have teamed up to produce this beautiful poster commemorating all of the villains from Return of the Jedi. The best part is, all of the proceeds will go to the National Lymphoma Society in honor of Jay Shimko, Great Lakes 501st member TK-130, who is actually a lymphoma survivor.

Lucasfilm has graciously authorized this limited edition poster, which completes the Original Trilogy set of villain-style posters that Matt Busch has produced for the films’ anniversaries over the years (pictured below). And before you ask, no, they are no longer available. I’m kicking myself for not knowing about the New Hope and Empire posters when they were available (anyone know where I could get them, email me).

25th Anniversary Star Wars Villain Posters

The standard poster size measures 24″ X 36″ and is printed on thick 100 lb. stock with a deluxe aqueous coating. The price of this poster is $50, but don’t forget that this is extremely rare and that you’ll be contributing to a wonderful cause. There are only 100 signed and numbered copies
of the poster available. Buy now on MattBusch.com.

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