Luke's new hand is tended to by medical droid 2-1B on the Medical Frigate for the closing scenes of THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK. What's interesting about this image is that it's from the original version of the sequence, filmed at ELSTREE from July 12th 1979, which didn't make it into the final film. Note the facial bruising Luke has (not seen in the finished film) and the prosthetic interior mechanisms that would have been located within his palm. At the recent US STAR WARS Where Science Meets Imagination exhibition in California, AFICIONADO contributor Ian Trussler took these images of the hand/palm to have been partially used for the sequence.
|Above two pics by Ian Trussler.|
|The original filming rehearsals of the finale scene in July 1979 at ELSTREE.|
During that original July filming, Anthony Daniels was keenly aware that the final scene, in whatever scripted/storyboarded form it was in, might not prove satisfying to audiences when cut together, and vocally expressed his opinion that the sequence would need to be re-shot. His instincts would prove right, as new storyboards were drafted by ILM's Nilo Rodis-Jamero on 21st November 1979 (and listed as "added" shots) for filming of the interior scene, presumably done later that month (in the US (ILM) or at ELSTREE?) or into December 1979 with Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Kenny Baker and the robot controlled Artoo. AFICIONADO assumes the shoot was actually done in December, near Xmas (that would account for the image below of Fisher with the Xmas party decorations around 2-1B!). In the re-shoot used in the completed movie, Luke has a new hairstyle and no facial bruising, with insert scenes of a new hand, instigated at the request of Irvin Kershner (as noted in J.W. Rinzler's MAKING OF EMPIRE book), presumably shot later or around the same time with an unknown hand double.
|In the re-shoot, Luke no longer has any bruising and his haircut is different. Threepio watches 2-1B presumably make the final seal on Luke's new hand-a scene not in the completed movie. The palm scene was eventually abandoned with a new insert.|
|The less gruesome new insert scene for Luke's hand.|
|Carrie Fisher on the Medical Frigate set with 2-1B, presumably for the re-shoot during either November or December 1979 (near Xmas?-note the decorations around the droid).|
|Luke and Leia as they appear in the re-shoot seen in the final scene of the movie.|
UPDATE 2/4/2013. Pablo Hidalgo's STARWARS.COM blog thinks that the hand is from JEDI, and not EMPIRE. Whilst he presents plausible proof from the official comic strip, it's still not an official confirmation-it really needs an original member of the ROTJ behind the scenes team to confirm it. Feature: Star Wars Mysteries: Let’s Give Luke a Hand | Star Wars Blog
AFICIONADO contacted Mister Hidalgo through the site with this feature link for his perusal, but no return correspondence is likely forthcoming...
For more information on the making of EPISODE V, why not get hold of our exhaustive, info-packed behind the scenes PDF back issues on THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK here: STAR WARS AFICIONADO "EMPIRE" BEHIND THE SCENES COMPANION and here: STAR WARS AFICIONADO DOUBLE ISSUE 11/12-THE MAKING OF "THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK"