Author Archives: jawajames

About jawajames

San Diego-based Jawa.

Star Wars Story Talk: Salt Lake Comic Con, Aliens of the Galaxy, & Year by Year

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Time for a new colossal-sized episode of Star Wars Story Talk as Yowie the Skunk, Baby Jawa, and I cover the latest in Star Wars stories, and we have a lot to talk about: a few recent Star Wars events and check out not one, not two, but three Star Wars books! I give a recap of all the Star Wars goings-on at Salt Lake Comic Con, held at the beginning of September, plus talk a bit on Star Wars Day at the San Diego Padres, and dive into three books: the newest Star Wars Little Golden Book: I Am a Princess, and Star Wars: Aliens of the Galaxy by Jason Fry and the newly released Star Wars Year by Year: A Visual History, Updated and Expanded Edition by Pablo Hidalgo. Plus an update on Wear Star Wars Every Day and a triple dose of Baby Jawa fun time! Continue reading

Wear Star Wars Every Day: Week 37


#WearStarWarsEveryDay kicked off a new challenge: the Star Wars podcast listener challenge for Force Friday (Sept. 30). Otherwise, just a regular week in wearing different Star Wars clothes every day – no new donations in Week 37, but we’ve already gotten some for Week 38. Thanks to everyone who has lent me a t-shirt that I’ve worn this week: Patricia, Bryan, Donna, James, and Lori!

Remember, every day I wear a new and different Star Wars apparel item, my daily pledge makers will chip in $4.65 to Collateral Repair Project! This week, we’ve got a mashup of The Force Awakens and The Little Prince, Admiral Ackbar for Rebel Legion, and some throwbacks to the past: classic posters, SW:CCG cards, stuff from two Celebration Europes, and one that was worn to the first Star Wars Celebration. Plus I recently got to talk up the Wear Star Wars Every Day charity fundraising campaign to my friends, Sarah and Rich, on the Skywalking Through Neverland podcast.

This review for Week 37 covers September 9 to September 16 of my wearathon, and an update on fundraising for Collateral Repair Project, a non-profit organization that provides emergency assistance, education, and community support to urban refugees.

Get more info on what Wear Star Wars Every Day is all about, or make a donation via GoFundMe or a per-day pledge. While each day I continue my project, another $4.65 is donated by our pledge makers, but I’d love to get that total up to $5.00 even (or higher!) for the last quarter of 2016.

LEGOLAND California announces new The Force Awakens models for 2017

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LEGOLAND California announced a major addition to their LEGO Star Wars Miniland to open in March 2017. While the Carlsbad theme park currently has Star Wars miniland dioramas representing key scenes from the first six films, as well as a jumbo-sized Death Star model, they are planning a whole set of scenes to build The Force Awakens into their fantastic Miniland style.

Joined at the press conference by a lifesize LEGO R2-D2, LEGOLAND California Resort’s General Manager Peter Ronchetti detailed the plans for The Force Awakens Miniland Model Display at the theme park:

“Right now, at our secret Model Shop in Carlsbad, Master Model Designer Nik Ehm of our Merlin’s Magic Making team is working on creating six scenes that represent the first 30 minutes of Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” said Ronchetti. “There are two primary focal points – the more traditional character-driven scenes on the planet of Jakku, and an enormous LEGO model of the Star Destroyer Finalizer. At 16-feet long, it will be the longest LEGO Star Wars Miniland model ever created!”

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According to the press release, the scenes, which will be in the center of LEGO Star Wars Miniland and feature lights, sound effects and animation that bring the scenes to life, will include:

  • Kylo Ren’s capture of Poe on Jakku
  • Rey’s rescue of BB-8
  • Poe and Finn’s escape from the Finalizer
  • The wreck of Finn and Poe’s TIE Fighter
  • Rey, Finn and BB-8’s escape from Niima Outpost
  • The escape from the Starship Graveyard

The park announced that this new model display will open to the public for their annual LEGO Star Wars Days on March 4-5, 2017, perfect for spring break.

“At LEGOLAND California Resort, we pride ourselves in innovation, creativity and memorable experiences for our millions of guests we see each year and 2017 continues that tradition,” said Ronchetti. “Star Wars: The Force Awakens set records as the top-grossing film nationally of all time and we’re excited to bring it to life here in our popular LEGO Star Wars Miniland!” said Ronchetti.

Other upcoming additions to the LEGO-themed resort in 2017 include an expansion for the LEGOLAND Water Park, called Surfer’s Bay, and the addition of NINJAGO themed rooms and suites to the main hotel, replacing the castle themed rooms, with the plan to open a new separate LEGO Castle themed hotel in 2018, in front of Sea Life Aquarium.

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The new The Force Awakens model will be replacing the model currently in the center of LEGO Star Wars Miniland: a large diorama depicting the Battle of Christophsis from 2008’s The Clone Wars animated film. This diorama, which features Ahsoka Tano, Anakin Skywalker, Obi-wan Kenobi and Captain Rex leading clone forces against an army of battle droids and larger weaponry amid the crystalline buildings of Christophsis, is one of the original seven dioramas from when LEGO Star Wars Miniland opened in 2011. I hate to see older exhibits taken down, but a sixteen-foot Star Destroyer towering over the guests will certainly bring a wow factor as a centerpiece to the whole Miniland experience that just isn’t there presently. I’d love to see a built-out Niima Outpost, complete with Unkar Plutt’s shop, and the spaceport, and will be interesting to see how they incorporate a different scale for the spaceship chase dioramas.

While I am certainly looking forward to seeing The Force Awakens brought to LEGO Star Wars miniland, I still feel that there is so much more they could do – after all, there’s Rebels and the LEGO The Freemaker Adventures also to build on, and by the time this opens in 2017, Rogue One will have been released. But I also know that there’s not a lot of real estate in the LEGO Star Wars Miniland area without doing some major surface regrading as the area is terraced on the side of a hill. Hopefully they are planning ahead to where will they put the eventual Episode VIII & IX displays!

Check out the official announcement video for a sneak peek at some of the early renderings of how the new models will appear in Miniland (For just the Star Wars portion of the announcement, watch from 0:19 to 0:49):

Wear Star Wars Every Day: Force Friday Podcast Listener Challenge

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As my Wear Star Wars Every Day charity fundraising campaign approaches the end of 9 months of wearing a different Star Wars-themed clothing item every day, it’s time to kick the fundraising up a notch, and Nick DiColandrea at Coffee with Kenobi has helped me find a way. In the past few months, several Star Wars podcasts, including Galactic Fashion, Skywalking through Neverland, and Coffee with Kenobi have had me as a guest to talk up my fundraising effort for Collateral Repair Project, a nonprofit that provides assistance, education, and community support for urban refugees in Amman, Jordan.

But now, Coffee with Kenobi has put out a challenge to their listeners to turn Force Friday (September 30) into a Force for good: making a one-day fundraising blitz for Wear Star Wars Every Day and Collateral Repair Project! And I’m putting out the call to other Star Wars podcasts to see who has the awesomest listeners.

So on Force Friday, September 30th, 2016, we’re having a one-day fundraising challenge. Every podcast can encourage their listeners to donate via the GoFundMe, and mention their podcast name in the comments. Nick at Coffee with Kenobi has set an ambitious goal of $500 raised just from Coffee with Kenobi listeners – who thinks that their podcast can do better than that?

So while you’re out stocking up on Rogue One merchandise, maybe toss a little bit of your Star Wars toy budget towards making life a little easier for refugees. I’ve got a cool shirt I’m saving for Force Friday, but if at least $75 gets donated, I’ll wear a bonus clothing item and post of a photo of that – a signed game-worn Durham Bulls R2-D2 jersey! (Remember, daily photos get posted on the Wear Star Wars Every Day Facebook page and on Twitter using #WearStarWarsEveryDay.

If your favorite podcast that covers Star Wars wants to show off that they have the galaxy’s best listeners, just drop me a line in the comments, or via Twitter @jamesjawa. And if that podcast wants to rally their listeners with me wearing their podcast swag if their team pulls ahead, we can arrange that!

Wear Star Wars Every Day: Week 36


Week 36 of #WearStarWarsEveryDay finishes up Salt Lake Comic Con and hits the milestone of Day 250! Big thanks to Karen, S, and J, for their donations in the past week, pushing us up to over $2,600 raised for Collateral Repair Project. Plus a fairly random assortment of Star Wars clothes – Thanks to everyone who has lent me apparel seen this week: Bryan, Paul, Donna, and Tyler!

Remember, every day I wear a new and different Star Wars apparel item, my daily pledgemakers will chip in $4.65! This week, we’ve got a Celebration V crew shirt, a Star Wars baseball mashup, 501st Legion and Rebel Legion shirts, a Fauxthentic History podcast shirt, and a women’s racerback tank top from Course of the Force. This review for Week 36 covers September 2 to September 8 of my wearathon, and an update on fundraising for Collateral Repair Project, a non-profit organization that provides emergency assistance, education, and community support to urban refugees.

Get more info on what Wear Star Wars Every Day is all about, or make a donation via GoFundMe or a per-day pledge. While each day I continue my project, another $4.65 is donated by our pledge makers, but I’d love to get that total up to $5.00 even (or higher!) for the last quarter of 2016.

Video: Jedi vs Sith Dance Off at Salt Lake Comic Con

As part of the pre-show entertainment before the Mark Hamill panel at Salt Lake Comic Con last Thursday, a dance crew came out to bring the Force into balance with a Jedi and Sith dance battle on the main stage at the Vivint Smart Home Arena. Did the Light Side prevail, or did the Dark Side get to boogie on home? Watch and find out!

Wear Star Wars Every Day: Week 35 and August prize drawing winners!


Since August is not known for its holidays, I turned the last week of August into the #WearStarWarsEveryDay events and holidays week, celebrating some fun fan events and some random holidays, none of which are in August! Plus we have some nice donations to report! Big thanks to Jennifer, Ian, Tim, and an anonymous donor for helping us raise over $80 in the past week, pushing us up to almost $2,600 raised for Collateral Repair Project.

Thanks to Trina for her donation of a St. Patrick’s Day Star Wars shirt! Also, thanks to everyone who has lent me apparel seen this week: Anastasia, Mark, Christian, Dartanian, James, and Paul! Remember, every day I wear a new and different Star Wars apparel item, my daily pledgemakers will chip in $4.65! This week, we’ve got a piece of a Rebels costume, a Christmas sweater, two shirts related to theme park Star Wars events and more! This review for Week 35 covers August 26 to September 1 of my wearathon, and an update on fundraising for Collateral Repair Project, a non-profit organization that provides emergency assistance, education, and community support to urban refugees.

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And now to announce the winners of the August prize drawings:

  • The uncorrected advance copy of Star Wars: Ahsoka goes to Jennifer Q. And as a special bonus, this copy is signed by the author, E. K. Johnston, whom I met at Salt Lake Comic Con.
  • The Star Wars Celebration Europe 2016 Crew shirt goes to Maliha S.
  • The copy of Star Wars: Aliens of the Galaxy by Jason Fry goes to Tim L.
  • The Rusty Droid bottle opener from Star Wars Celebration Europe 2016 goes to no one :(. To be eligible, all one had to do is both have liked the Wear Star Wars Every Day facebook page by the end of August and shared one of the August daily photos on their own FB page, and according to my notification tracking, no one did both. So I guess I’ll save the prize for a future prize drawing.

Thanks to everyone who has supported Wear Star Wars Every Day so far, both our one-time donors and our per-day pledge makers. If you’d like to chip in at a dime a day or a quarter per day (or more), make your pledge at the per-day pledge form and you can choose whether to support the project for the entire year, or just start at the beginning of September. Or you can just make a one-time or a recurring monthly donation at GoFundMe.com/WearStarWars2016.

Get more info on what Wear Star Wars Every Day is all about, or make a donation or a per-day pledge. While each day I continue my project, another $4.65 is donated by our pledge makers, but I’d love to get that total up to $5.00 even (or higher!) for the last quarter of 2016.

Wear Star Wars Every Day: Week 34

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Only a few more days left in the month to be eligible to win cool prizes in our August giveaway for Wear Star Wars Every Day – there’s the uncorrected advance proof of Ahsoka by E. K. Johnston (book doesn’t come out until October), the just-released Aliens of the Galaxy by Jason Fry, a Celebration Europe crew t-shirt, and a SWCE Rusty Droid bottle opener. Plus here’s the recap video for Week 34 of #WearStarWarsEveryDay, full of news on donations, what I wore, and now the latest on what’s going on with Collateral Repair Project.


Maxi big thanks to our anonymous GoFundMe donor this week, whoever you are! Also, thanks to everyone who has lent me apparel seen this week: Donna, Tony, Chris, and James! Remember, every day I wear a new and different Star Wars apparel item, my daily pledgemakers will chip in $4.65! This week, we’ve got some Rebel Legion wear, a pair of Boba Fett socks, a rarity from the 2006 US tour to promote the DVD release, and a really cool shirt from the #Cantina party at Celebration Europe. This review for Week 34 covers August 19 to August 25 of my wearathon, and an update on fundraising for Collateral Repair Project, a non-profit organization that provides emergency assistance, education, and community support to urban refugees.

Thanks to everyone who has supported Wear Star Wars Every Day so far, both our one-time donors and our per-day pledge makers. While each day I continue my project, another $4.65 is donated by our pledge makers, but I’d love to get that total up to $5.00 even (or higher!) for the second half of 2016. If you’d like to chip in at a dime a day or a quarter per day (or more), make your pledge at the per-day pledge form and you can choose whether to support the project for the entire year, or just start at the beginning of September. Or you can just make a one-time or a recurring monthly donation at GoFundMe.com/WearStarWars2016. Remember, if you donate in August, you might be eligible to win the prize drawings for an ARC of the upcoming Ahsoka novel, a Celebration Europe Crew shirt, and more!

Get more info on what Wear Star Wars Every Day is all about, or make a donation or a per-day pledge!

Star Wars Story Talk: Rogue One trailer reaction video, SWCE, SDCC, & Aftermath: Life Debt

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We’ve got a jumbo episode of Star Wars Story Talk (AKA the show formerly known as Unboxing Star Wars) as Yowie the Skunk, Baby Jawa, and I cover a whole sandcrawler-load of the latest in Star Wars stories. Baby Jawa does her first reaction video, watching the Rogue One trailer, and Yowie and I talk a bit about Star Wars Celebration Europe, San Diego Comic-Con and review Aftermath: Life Debt, the new novel by Chuck Wendig! Plus a little update on Wear Star Wars Every Day, a visit from a Loth-cat, and of course some Baby Jawa fun time!


Quick reviews
→ Trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – I am really excited for this movie and this trailer just pushes it up another notch. But how will Baby Jawa react to her first movie trailer viewing?
→ Star Wars Celebration Europe – Big thumbs up! A whole ton of fun and a lot of work. Plus seeing old friends and making new ones while in London!
→ Star Wars at San Diego Comic-Con – Even though there wasn’t a big movie panel, Star Wars still brought a lot to San Diego, including the Rogue One costume display and the publishing panel.
Star Wars: Aftermath – Life Debt – Chuck Wendig increases the scale and brings in some favorite film characters into the post-ROTJ era as the heroes help track down Han Solo as he’s disappeared while trying to liberate Kashyyyk. Solid read!
→ Loth-Cat Plush from Star Wars Celebration Europe – A big hit! Mrowwwl! Help me come up with a name for this grinning feline!

Mentioned on Star Wars Story Talk
On StarWars.com: Recent interviews with Chuck Wendig on Aftermath: Life Debt from Del Rey and Jarrett J. Krosoczka on Jedi Academy: A New Class from Scholastic.

Podcasts: Thanks to Coffee with Kenobi for having me on the podcast as a featured guest to talk Bloodline, Life Debt, and Wear Star Wars Every Day, and thanks to Skywalking through Neverland for bringing me on the show to discuss Wear Star Wars Every Day.

Salt Lake Comic Con: Check out my schedule at Salt Lake Comic Con (Sept 1 to Sept 3) or just view the general Star Wars-related programming, featuring Mark Hamill, Jeremy Bulloch, Lucasfilm Story Group members: Pablo Hidalgo, Leland Chee, and Matt Martin; also including Star Wars authors, artists, and voice actors, and the Full of Sith podcast crew: Bryan Young, Amy Ratcliffe, and Mike Pilot.

Get more info on Wear Star Wars Every Day or make a donation at GoFundMe or sign up to make a per-day pledge.

Note: Del Rey provided a copy of Life Debt: Aftermath (Star Wars) for review.

Wear Star Wars Every Day: Week 33 & more prizes


Want even more incentive to donate to Wear Star Wars Every Day this August! We’ve got another book prize added to this month’s prize drawings! Watch the video to see what it is! One copy of this mystery book will be given to a random person who donates to Collateral Repair Project via the GoFundMe in August. This is on top of the previously announced prize drawings, including the advance reader copy of Ahsoka, by E. K. Johnston, the Celebration Europe 2016 crew shirt, and the Celebration Europe 2016 Rusty Droid bottle opener.

Great big thanks to our sole GoFundMe donor this week, Dennis, who heard about Wear Star Wars Every Day from my guest appearance on episode 57 of the Coffee with Kenobi podcast (where I also talk about Bloodline and Aftermath: Life Debt). Additionally, Skywalking Through Neverland also had me on their recent podcast to give an update on this fundraising campaign, so big thanks to the fine folks at Coffee with Kenobi and Skywalking Through Neverland for their support in helping me spread the word about Collateral Repair Project and Wear Star Wars Every Day.

And thanks to everyone who has lent me apparel that I’ve worn for week 33 – all seven articles of clothing were lent from supporters: Donna, Anastasia, Paul, Margaret, James & Mark! Remember, every day i keep the streak of wearing a different Star Wars apparel item going, that’s another $4.65 pledged from my donors! This week, we’ve got stuff from the Rebel Legion at Celebration VI, shirts from Japan and Malaysia, and a throwback to one of the first Star Wars museum exhibitions. This review for Week 33 covers August 12 to August 18 of my wearathon, and an update on fundraising for Collateral Repair Project, a non-profit organization that provides emergency assistance, education, and community support to urban refugees.

Thanks to everyone who has supported Wear Star Wars Every Day so far, both our one-time donors and our per-day pledgemakers. Each day I continue my project is another $4.65 donated by our pledge makers. I’d love to get that total up to $5.00 even (or higher!) for the second half of 2016. If you’d like to chip in at a dime a day or a quarter per day (or more), make your pledge at the per-day pledge form and you can choose whether to support the project for the entire year, or just start at the beginning of September. Or you can just make a one-time or monthly donation at GoFundMe.com/WearStarWars2016. Remember, if you donate in August, you might be eligible to win the prize drawings for an ARC of the upcoming Ahsoka novel, a Star Wars Celebration Europe Crew shirt, and more!

Get more info on what Wear Star Wars Every Day is all about, or make a donation or a per-day pledge!