Star Wars Bits: New Andy Fairhurst Posters, Charity Auctions, And A Terrific Carrie Fisher Q&A

In this edition of Star Wars Bits:

  • Artist Andy Fairhurst reveals a new trilogy of Star Wars posters.
  • Carrie Fisher continues to be a national treasure at the Chicago Comic-Con.
  • Star Wars items go up for auction courtesy of Cancer Gets Lost.
  • The story of how the Lucasfilm Story Group was formed.
  • An interview with Star Wars: Aliens of the Galaxy author Jason Fry.
  • A look at the creation of a Poe Dameron helmet replica.
  • New details on the next batch of Star Wars Battlefront DLC.
  • The latest wacky theory about what's going on with Rey.
  • Amazing behind-the-scenes images from the original 1977 Star Wars.
  • Updates and insights on Marvel's Poe Dameron comic series.
  • Star Wars Aftermath: Empire's End gets a new release date.

Artist Andy Fairhurst has created a new series of posters for Bottleneck Gallery featuring Padme Amidala, Leia Organa, and Rey with each Star Wars heroine standing before an army of Clone Troopers/Imperial Stormtroopers/First Order Stormtroopers while something round and significant hovers in the air. This set comes in a limited edition of only 325, costs $100, and is on sale right now. You can take a closer look at the art by perusing the gallery below.

Cancer Gets Lost was first founded in 2012 as part of an initiative to auction off props and items from the television series Lost to raise money to fund childhood cancer research. Since then, they have expanded their boundaries to all kinds of geek-friendly properties and their latest auction has a healthy amount of Star Wars stuff up for bidding. You can peruse the listings to sort through the various art prints, comic books, toys, and limited edition merchandise that is available. And don't feel too guilty if you want to spend $400 on a copy of that famous Star Wars: The Force Awakens table read photo signed by JJ Abrams, Bryan Burk, Mark Hamill, John Boyega, Carrie Fisher, Peter Mayhew, and Anthony Daniels – it's going to a great cause, after all.

There are few things as brutally honest and entertaining as a Carrie Fisher Q&A, so her her hour-long panel at the Wizard World Chicago Comic-Con (via Star Wars News Net) is a must-watch. Like Mark Hamill, Fisher has embraced her place in the pop culture pantheon, but like Harrison Ford, she's not afraid to poke Star Wars in the ribs when it deserves it. One highlight found her talking about whether or not Harrison Ford is funny in real life:

Harrison is witty, he is not funny. There's a big difference. Funny is about people pleasing, Harrison is definitely not a people pleasing.

And then she got real, explaining that her and Leia both became who they are because they were neglected by their fathers:

What generally does stuff like that in this universe is issues with your father. I don't think it's any different there. I have to say I was neglected by my father in both universes and you don't want to screw with me in either one.

You really should watch the whole thing, especially if you're as obsessed with Fisher's dog, Gary, as I am.

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Lucasfilm creative executive Rayne Roberts was a guest on an episode of the Black Girl Nerds podcast (via Screenrant), where she discussed the formation of the Lucasfilm Story Group, which oversees the larger Star Wars universe across movies, television, comics, and video games. Of course, it all originated with Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy:

I've spoken to [Kathleen Kennedy] about it, and what her initial idea was when she came into the company was, you know, she'd produced countless big franchise movies over her career, and a lot of times she'd noticed that there would be these ancillary books or supporting materials that would be developed to support these films, and the people that would go make those were not the same people who had been involved in making the movies, and there was this kind of disconnect. And so she was very intentional about saying, 'I want to create a central development team that has their hands in everything, so that all of the various media can be really intuitively and intentionally connected.'

While the choice to remove the original expanded universe from canon was controversial, most of the new stories that have arrived since the formation of the story group have been pretty damn good. If you're going to have an interconnected and sprawling universe, you might as well do it right.

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StarWars.com has posted an interview with Jason Fry, the author of the new book Star Wars: Aliens of the Galaxy. While Star Wars visual guides like this have existed for a long time (and will continue to exist for a longer time yet), Fry's approach sounds awfully refreshing. When asked about how he tries to define entire fictional species and races, he explained that he simply...doesn't:

I don't like to generalize and tried to be careful not to. I'm indebted to Dave Filoni for that. In The Clone Wars, Filoni made a point of stepping away from some of the more Flash Gordon-style species characterizations of earlier Star Wars material — Rodians being big-game hunters and bounty hunters, for instance — and I thought that made the Star Wars galaxy a lot richer. There's no single template for human characters, so why should there be one for other species?

Of course, if you take that too far the narrative gets so diffuse that it won't connect with the reader. So I tried to address historical, geographical, or biological factors that had shaped a species, while making clear that there'd be a ton of variation among individuals. There are noble Dugs, treacherous Wookiees, and Ithorians who toss their empty soda cans into the woods. Words like "some," "most," and "many" are your friends there.

The saga may have its roots in classic pulp sci-fi where good and evil is clearly defined, but there is plenty of room for shades of grey in the Star Wars universe. It's nice to see this mindset being applied to every corner of this universe.

You don't have to be the kind of person who collects expensive and detailed Star Wars memorabilia to appreciate this look at how this official Poe Dameron helmet was designed, built and packaged.

Rey in the force awakens ending

Uproxx has posted a wacky theory about Rey's future in the Star Wars universe and it involved her being...wait for it...the actual villain of the new trilogy. This theory hinges on one thing – Rey being so very skilled with the Force so quickly:

Throughout the original Star Wars films, it takes Luke forever to really master the Force. By the end of A New Hope, he's just reached the point of being able to trust himself and the Force, and he's only swung a lightsaber against a training droid. In Empire Strikes Back, he spends months lifting X-Wings and doing backflips under the tutelage of the greatest Jedi master, and still isn't ready to face Darth Vader. Yoda stresses that while the Light Side of the Force is stronger, learning the ways of the Dark Side is "quicker, easier, more seductive."

Sound like someone we know? Because it seems to take Rey no time at all to nail enough Force abilities to control a Stormtrooper's mind to free her. She has great ability, yes, but imagine Luke convincing everyone in Mos Eisley that he didn't have the droids they were looking for after seeing ol' Ben Kenobi doing it a few times. Rey hasn't had any real Jedi training (at least that she can remember), and the first person she starts picking up Force pointers from is Kylo Ren. She watches him and copies what he does, which could point at her tapping into the Dark Side all along. Rey also matches Kylo's skills on the Starkiller Base, and while he was injured, he was also dead set on killing her. In the movie's novelization, she even has to ignore a voice in her head that says "kill him" during her battle with Kylo, a voice that she knew was the Dark Side.

Of course, this theory doesn't take into account all of the real-world fans, especially young girls who look up to Rey as a role model, who would be totally crushed by this. For that reason alone, I can't imagine Lucasfilm considering it. Sometimes, a hero is just a hero and that's perfectly okay.

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BoingBong has compiled a gallery of photographs taken during the making of the original 1977 Star Wars and they are spectacular. In the days before green screen and computers, filming special effects sequences like the assault on the Death Star involved gigantic model built on parking lots and plenty of live explosions and lots of kneeling over and sweating and such. You can click the link above to check out more.

star wars battlefront death star

The next piece of DLC for Star Wars Battlefront will allow players to battle in and round the Death Star and EA has released new information about what you can expect. This new expansion is titled "Battle Station" and it will play out in a series of phases, with players battling it out in space before entering the Death Star on foot. Here's how it all shakes out:

In Phase 1 you'll be flying X-wings and A-wings against TIE fighters and TIE interceptors in space! The main objective in this phase is for Rebels to destroy enough TIE fighters until their Y-wing support can come in to weaken the Star Destroyer's defenses. Once vulnerable, Rebel starfighters can attack the weak spots in an effort to bring the Star Destroyer down. In an effort to help defend this key asset for the Empire, players along with AI ships will be set up to help defend the Star Destroyer.

Phase 2 will have players fighting inside this iconic space station among areas inspired by the classic trilogy. Rebel infantry will be tasked with extracting a priority droid from within the Death Star. Amidst the chaos of battle, you'll be able to gain an advantage by taking up arms as our new heroes Bossk and Chewbacca!

And finally, in the culmination of the new mode, players head back into space where the Rebels need to end the battle once and for all – by blowing up the Death Star! Players can become the hero of the Rebellion, Luke Skywalker, in his Red-5 X-wing as they attempt to destroy the Empire's ultimate weapon. But beware as Darth Vader has been dispatched to protect the Empire's asset in his TIE Advanced.

The exact date has yet to be revealed, but this is expected to drop some time in September.

star wars poe dameron comic

StarWars.com has revealed a new cover for the seventh issue of Marvel's Poe Dameron comic book series. This is actually a different cover than the one that was initially solicited, but Marvel says that the other cover will be used for a future issue. Here's the blurb that came with this reveal:

And it's only going to get more epic, as this exclusive reveal of the Poe Dameron #7 cover by Phil Noto demonstrates. We know Poe can fly anything, and he continually lives up to that reputation as each issue delves further into the leader of Black Squadron and his crew of elite Resistance pilots. It's been an awesome ride thus far as we get to follow Poe's exploits; each issue brings him closer and closer to that fateful meeting with Lor San Tekka. Throw in BB-8, and you've got a series that continues to soar.

If we're going to be honest, I'm not completely in love with this series yet. Poe himself is an entertaining lead, but the first few issues of this adventure (which finds him tracking down Lor San Tekka in the time before The Force Awakens) were a little underwhelming. However, things have gotten a lot better since the story has shifted to a prison break plot involving a prison planet and scheming Hutt.

If you have been keeping up with Poe Dameron, a new episode of Star Wars Explained delves into the latest issue and finds a connection between this storyline and Marvel's Lando miniseries from a little while back.

Del Rey Books has revealed that Chuck Wendig's Star Wars Aftermath: Empire's End will now arrive on shelves on February 21, 2017 rather than the initially announced January 31, 2017. They cite some scheduling modifications as being the sole reason for the change, not any kind of creative hiccups. Although I was disappointed by the first Star Wars Aftermath, I've heard good things about the first sequel, Star Wars Aftermath: Life Debt, so I hope Wendig can close out this trilogy in style.

And we can cap off this edition of Star Wars Bits with the latest episode of The Star Wars Show, which features a special guest in The Daily Show host Trevor Noah.