LUKE SKYWALKER RETURNS TO THE GALAXY, FROM DECEMBER 15TH, 2017

ARRIVING IN THE NETHERLANDS, FROM 30/9/17. BOOK NOW FOR THE ULTIMATE 'STAR WARS' EXHIBITION

Thursday, 21 September 2017

'STAR WARS' AT 40: RED LEADER CALLS HIS SQUAD...


Approaching the Death Star for their attack, Red Leader has his pilots signal in their battle readiness for a classic scene. Stalwart British character actor, and no stranger to UK sci-fi TV appearances in the early seventies, Drewe Henley would give the brave Red Leader a mix of experience and hotheadedness (in agreement with George Lucas), with the character's later trusting his kinsman instincts about Luke in giving the boy command of the back-up trench run fighter flight adding weight to a small but important role.

Red Leader... in sandals!
Henley enjoying the good weather outside the Elstree soundstage, along with Mark Hamill and Anthony Daniels, then filming landspeeder scenes.

The British cast (mostly American redubbed in post) X and Y-wing pilot actors filmed their scenes during the then blistering record breaking Summer of 1976. So hot was it filming in the singular cockpit frame at Elstree, and against starfield lights and blue screens, that sweat could be seen on the pilot visors (resulting in cosmetic changes being made to them), whilst Henley got the chance to wear some comfortable sandals and sunbathe between studio calls!

https://starwarsaficionado.blogspot.co.uk/2015/03/behind-scenes-red-flight-at-elstree.html

https://starwarsaficionado.blogspot.co.uk/search/label/DREWE%20HENLEY

CLASSIC IMAGE: WOOKIEE STAR POWER!


I think it unlikely that Wookiees have face lifts, but Chewbacca nonetheless has that youthful look about him in the Prequel era's EPISODE III, looking pretty good for his circa 180 years of age!

Before we get to see the world's favourite Wookiee pilot/sidekick in action for The Last Jedi, enjoy his starring role as a family favourite via the fun, busy, colourful and visually mind bogglingly full, yet eye-catching second volume of Where's the Wookiee? It's out now in the UK from EGMONT.


Here's the blurb:


The exciting sequel to the bestselling Star Wars book of the past 10 years, Where’s the Wookiee.
Chewbacca is back and on the loose across the galaxy, and this time he’s brought some Wookiee friends. Find the hairy hero and a host of favourite characters in another search and find adventure. All new locations from Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Rogue One: A Star Wars story, as well as scenes from throughout the Star Wars saga.
Join Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Kylo Ren, Darth Vader and many more for another adventure. The perfect gift for Star Wars fans of all ages!

Get the book here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Star-Wheres-Wookiee-Search-Activity/dp/1405284188/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1505948994&sr=1-2&keywords=wheres+the+wookie



Wednesday, 20 September 2017

'STAR WARS' AT 40: 'ANGRY MOSQUITOS'!


The small but determined force of Rebel X-wings close-in on the goliath that is the Death Star space station in this superb art by Howard Chaykin for the original STAR WARS Marvel comic series adaptation (issue 6). The X-wings are still referred to as Blue Squadron, with the change to Red happening whilst the comic adaptation was presumably already too far gone into production to make corrections.

Unlike the film version's fifteen minutes, the Death Star firing range point in the comics was thirty.

CLASSIC IMAGE: FUR POWER!


When you're friends with Ewoks, you're friends for life, as our Rebel commandos find when the furry critters become unlikely allies en masse in the battle against the Empire, during the climactic excitement of RETURN OF THE JEDI.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

EPISODE VIII: HEAVY DUTY SPACE WARFARE!


The First Order's space vessels are intimidating enough, but this must be their biggest, more brutal vessel yet in this so far unnamed dreadnought, a squatter and dagger-like redesign of what we've seen with the Empire, making its debut for The Last Jedi, and no doubt amidst much conflict against Resistance ships and fighters.

http://www.starwars.com/news/inside-two-deadly-new-first-order-vehicles-from-the-last-jedi

'STAR WARS' AT 40: PRINCESS OBSERVER!


Time is running out for the Rebels of Yavin IV, including Princess Leia and droid C-3PO, monitoring the battle plan and communications of their brave pilots over the dreaded, approaching Death Star space station, whose superweapon is minutes away from firing. A classic alternate image, and a classic scene, from the original STAR WARS.

https://starwarsaficionado.blogspot.co.uk/2015/05/behind-scenes-monitoring-battle.html

Monday, 18 September 2017

EPISODE VIII: COMPLETING HIS TRAINING...?

EPISODE VIII art of Kylo Ren by Brian Rood,

POSSIBLE SPOILERS!

He's arrogant, aggressive, and highly dangerous in a way that hasn't been seen since the worst examples of Anakin Skywalker during the Clone Wars, but Kylo Ren has proved far, far nastier and less forgiving in his youthful guise in many respects, especially in Patricide. Prior manipulated into the monster he has become, Ren's presence in the new sequel era has won much plaudits from fans and critics, deservedly so thanks to a strong and memorable performance from Adam Driver, giving us a character who looks set to build on his ability to wreak havoc and chaos once more as he continues his journey towards the Dark Side of the Force, and his deep and unsettling desire to be as powerful as his grandfather. (And watch out for rumoured trips to Vader's old haunts, like Mustafar, in this new adventure).

A revised costume and new cape for Kylo Ren in EPISODE VIII.

Previous abilities seen so eerie and effective in THE FORCE AWAKENS look set to reappear, too, as will a sequence involving him with his band of killers that are the Knights of Ren. The Resistance has never met such a greater challenge with his developing aura of evil, alongside the power of the First Order, threatening to swallow up the galaxy.

'STAR WARS' AT 40: SHEPPERTON FLIGHT!


The superb X-wing fighter prop takes to the air at Shepperton Studios, suspended by a crane wire support whose entry point above came via a specially created hole in the soundstage ceiling at Shepperton, supervised by John Stears and his team- the only way the scene could be realized practically. This iconic moment was also shot from numerous angles for the editorial process, in order to make it look as if more than one X-wing was actually taking flight.

John Stears (under the camera crane) confers on the Shepperton set.

Sunday, 17 September 2017

'BLADE RUNNER 2049': THE SIXTH EXTINCTION?


Load your pistol, unpack the Voight-Kampff test machine and ready yourself for the ultimate battle between human and synthetic realities, as Harrison Ford and Ryan Gosling's BLADE RUNNER 2049 accelerates its publicity campaign towards worldwide cinematic release this 6th October, 2017. (It comes to UK cinemas from the 5th.)

Latest clips and publicity:

New trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Hp0zDYWCUw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UlkyCqAELYs
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=41YwCsjassk
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiLKaU_n-gY
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HjmJjvuPg9M

Hunters now the hunted!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rjxk6sIHbJk
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=889Mnym8EhA

New BLADE RUNNER 2049 prequel, starring Dave Bautista: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pAktiFSPXMY

Harrison speaks! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KHMsPOxiYvU

Jared Leto speaks to GQ: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_Vs4b0Exuk

SPOILER ALERT: http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/gossip/confidential/sean-young-secretly-filmed-scenes-blade-runner-sequel-article-1.3498476

Official movie site: http://bladerunnermovie.com/

Starting on UK TV from September, 2017, a new anthology series on Philip K. Dick's work: ELECTRIC DREAMS. More info here: https://kooltvblog.blogspot.co.uk/2017/09/sci-fi-shocks-back-philip-k-dicks.html

'STAR WARS' AT 40: "ALL PILOTS TO YOUR STATIONS"


As Luke slips into his fighter cockpit with ease and youthful anticipation, the final Rebel pilots get ready for flight. For this scene, filmed in May 1976 at Shepperton, the unknown pilots were played by background extras who wouldn't be used with the later filmed cockpit interior scenes at Elstree the following July.



Note that the very clean looking helmets they wear all have the Rebel insignia in the blue colour, part of the Blue Squadron of fighters. Due to ILM's worry about blue screen overspill during filming/optical compositing, however, Blue Squadron became Red Squadron several months later and the helmets were adapted to a wide variety of colours and designs instead. Intriguingly though, Luke's Red Five call sign pilot helmet at the Shepperton Studios clearly has the rebel insignia seperately in red on his helmet (as seen in all the production photos), but by the time of the Elstree cockpit filming another helmet must have been used for the actor- Luke's dirtied-up insignia helmet in HD clearly shows that it has been altered from blue to red.

Mark Hamill in the cockpit at Elstree. Note the back of the soundstage behind him.

The original ILM X-wing fighter models that had blue stripes indicating their squadron colours also changed with speed States-side... https://starwarsaficionado.blogspot.co.uk/2016/12/rogue-one-blues-in-battle.html

One of the original Blue Squadron X-wing models at ILM.