Sunday, May 30, 2010

EMPIRE WEEK IS OVER


Hard to believe that Empire Week is already over, but it’s even more hard to believe that Empire Strikes Back is 30 years old!

Thanks to everyone who visited, commented and linked to my reminisces as I tried to recapture some of that childhood fun and wonderment about this space movie sequel.

Don’t forget to visit these bloggers who also dumped out their own toy boxes full of Empire goodies.

John Rozum.com,Wonderful Wonderblog,Dave Lowe Design and Dartman's World of Wonder

Here’s the last two Empire action figures that I almost forgot to post - Luke Skywalker (Bespin Fatigues) & C-3PO (Removable Limbs).



Also, for something weird, random and kinda silly click here to see what I found while looking thru my stuff for Empire Week.

Thanks again and don’t kiss any Wookiees!

SOME SAY COBOT, SOME SAY KOBOT, SOME SAY COKE ROBOT, I SAY PIBBOT

Back in 2007 I finished my month long Star Wars celebration with a memory of the time I met the Pibbot, the lesser known cousin to the famous Coca-Cola robot. You can visit that post here.

A couple of weeks ago, I was pleased to shed new light on my fading memory of my impromptu meeting back in 1980. I was viewing some 1980 newspapers on microfilm looking for the ad when Empire played at our theater and then I ran across this ad.


Wow, it was something that I hadn’t expected seeing and didn’t realize Carl’s Market ran an ad for the promotion. Back in 1980 I had no clue the Pibbot was going to be at the store and it was such an exciting surprise. Finding this ad was also an exciting surprise! Now I know that I had my picture taken with Pibbot on September 20th. I always thought it was sometime in the summer.


I was hoping to see an article in the paper about Pibbot’s visit, but unfortunately this important local event slipped by the newspaper reporters. I did find another ad that Pibbot, (I should say Kobot as stated in the ad), visited a few towns away in Lebanon at a car dealership. I like that the ad says, "Meet Kobot a living robot cousin to R2-D2."



Now it makes me wonder whatever happened to my friend Pibbot and did he make it out of Missouri? Maybe he’s sitting in the back of someone’s storage building waiting to be found. If so, I hope I’m the one who finds him. I'm sure he'd feel right at home in Neato Coolville.

(Check out the newspaper photo found by my pal Glen of a Cobot invading a B.C. Canada Burger King)

LOBOT, UGNAUGHT & (TWIN POD) CLOUD CAR PILOT



TOPPS THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK CARD COUNTDOWN #1


Card #133 the title card from the blue border (second) series set.

My favorite Empire trading card is this one of the classic “Gone with the Wind” style poster painted by Roger Kastel. I had this poster hanging on my wall for years when I was a kid. Hmm... I guess that makes me a romantic!

Visit Vintage Star Wars Cards for more on the Topps Empire cards.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

GROWING UP EMPIRE STRIKES BACK

Yoda Kid

Since 2008, the Growing Up Star Wars flickr group has become the number one spot on the internet to view vintage photographs of the first Star Wars generation. Glen Mullaly and I have been curators of this amazing gallery of more than a thousand images and people continue to add photos all the time. If you haven’t visited for a while be sure to stop by. I’ve hand-picked 30 images from the group in honor of the 30th anniversary of Empire. Click on the numbers below to have a look.

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SHOW BIZ HARRISON FORD INTERVIEW



Unfortunately this 1980 interview from the Canadian series Show Biz is not complete, but it still is cool to see.

Uploaded to YouTube by robatsea2009

PEOPLE JUNE 9, 1980: STAR WARS STRIKES BACK




BESPIN SECURITY GUARDS


TOPPS THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK CARD COUNTDOWN #2


Card #43 from the red border (first) series set.

Snow Walkers, All Terrain Armored Transports, AT-ATs or giant robotic elephants, it doesn’t matter what you call ‘em, ‘cause they’re so neato cool!

Friday, May 28, 2010

LUKE SKYWALKER GETS CABLE PREMIUM CHANNELS

Here's a unique artifact left over from Luke Skywalker's house. It’s a Showtime/Movie Channel guide from February 1986.


Good thing Luke saved this instead of tossing it into the trash compactor. This issue features the cable premier of the drama based after Luke’s dysfunctional family.


I heard that after the destruction of the second Death Star, Luke became a Cable TV junkie. He subscribed to more than one hundred cable channels, including every movie channel known in the galaxy.

How did I come to possess something as special as this?

Ah, that’s a story filled with sadness and despair and should be something kept secret. I can say this; it would have made for an excellent episode of A&E’s Hoarders.

EMPIRE ERA AUTOGRAPHS


An antique dealer friend of mine picked up a large childhood Star Wars collection at a garage sale back in the mid-90's. I ended up with the collection and inside a folder was this Carrie Fisher autograph. The original owner of the collection was a girl who's hero was Princess Leia. I love that Carrie signed it Galactically Yours!

The bottom two of Anthony Daniels and David Prowse I picked up from Intergalactic Trading Company in Florida. I can't remember specifics but I think they found a few that had been tucked away after some signings back in the early 1980's. I picked these up in the early 90's.




Even tho I've met all three of these actors and aquired in-person autographs, I really enjoy having these Empire era ones in my collection.

PUSHING PENCILS FOR THE EMPIRE

One of my earliest collections started in the second grade when I began saving pencils. I loved ‘em and it seemed I couldn’t collect enough of ‘em.


My mind must’ve blown up when I received my Star Wars fan club packet of goodies all related to the Empire Strikes Back. The coolest thing in the lot was the pencil! As seen above, I still have two original pencils from my youth.

The ad below is from Bantha Tracks, the Star Wars fan club newsletter.

LANDO CALRISSIAN, HAN SOLO (BESPIN OUTFIT) & LEIA ORGANA (BESPIN GOWN)



TOPPS THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK CARD COUNTDOWN #3


Card #78 from the red border (first) series set.

Lando is one of the coolest characters in the Star Wars universe!

You know, there should have been a Star Wars TV show back in the 1980's called Space Pirates: The Adventures of Lando and Han. Now that's a YouTube 80's cop style mash-up waiting to happen. I can see Lando and Han always on the run getting into space bar fights and hitting on all the space girls with the sounds of Meco playing in the background.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

1980 DOLBY STEREO AD: NORTHPOINT THEATRE SHOWING EMPIRE

Take a look at this Dolby Stereo Ad featuring San Francisco's Northpoint Theatre. Empire played 28 weeks at this theater starting with the original opening date of May 21, 1980. I'm sure it was amazing seeing Empire in 70mm at this theater.

Anyone got a time machine handy?

AL WILLIAMSON EMPIRE ADAPTATION


It was a thrill for me back in 2000 when I met the amazing Al Williamson at the San Diego Comic-Con. He signed for me the first issue of his Empire Strikes Back adaptation.


Later that day, I ran into him on the convention floor and started up a simple and short conversation. It was one of the highlights of the convention.

THE BOUNTY HUNTERS






TOPPS THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK CARD COUNTDOWN #4


Card #74 from the red border (first) series set.

Just a few seconds on the screen and these “Bounty Hunters” opened up the imaginations of kids worldwide and they didn’t even do anything but stand there. My favorite Bounty Hunter has always been Bossk with Boba falling in at a close second.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

FUN WITH THE STAR WARS SOUNDBOARD


I've been having fun with the Star Wars Soundboard at Star Wars.com.

Go listen to my Empire Strikes Back Mix.

HARRISON FORD & MARK HAMILL ON THE TODAY SHOW FROM 1980





Uploaded to YouTube by robatsea2009.

IMPERIAL TIE FIGHTER PILOT & IMPERIAL COMMANDER


TOPPS THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK CARD COUNTDOWN #5


Card #328 from the yellow border (third) series set.

Everything about this card is great from the caption, “Champions of Freedom” to the publicity pose or our rebel heroes.

It always bugged me when I was kid that the third card set has a yellow border instead of the regular silver border like the first two sets. I guess technically this set should be considered the green border set, but everyone seems to call it the yellow border set.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

STAR WARS 33 YEARS OLD TODAY


I thought this cover by Carmine Infantino and Bob Wiacek would fit in nicely with Empire Week.

ANTICIPATION FOR STAR WARS 2


The above clipping is from the April 30, 1979 issue of Boxoffice magazine.

My pal Mike Middleton sent me this Kansas City, Missouri newspaper ad for the August 15, 1979 re-release of Star Wars. Attached to the film was the first Empire trailer to show footage from the sequel.


View the first Empire trailer narrated by Harrison Ford here.

You'll notice in the hard to read fine print that fans were given Kenner Toy Discount Books.


Click here and scroll down half way and you'll see the the Kenner Toy Discount Book. Be sure to click on page one to read the rest of Pete Vilmur's 2006 Star Wars Theatrical Experience article at Star Wars.com.

I remember wishing I could win this Kenner Sweepstakes when I was a kid. Below is the flyer that I saved from childhood.



Wow, that would have been the ultimate! I wonder if there's any snapshots or newspaper articles about the kid who won? I'd like to see photos from the event with the winner walking in with C-3PO and R2 just like in the illustration.


The closest is this photo from the 1980 Toy Fair Catalog as seen on the Star Wars Collectors Archive Site. Also, you can see a very tiny photo of the sweepstakes newspaper ad by clicking here. It was on display at Kenner's 1980 Toy Fair booth and is the one on the right.

YODA & ARTOO-DEETOO (WITH SENSORSCOPE)



I felt like I was really on the planet Dagobah when I snapped these photos today. First I almost stepped on a live snake and then I was buzzed by a pesky hornet.