Max Page, who played little Darth Vader in the popular Volkswagon commercial, was discharged from the hospital today following open-heart surgery to correct a congenital defect.
These lightsaber toothbrushes from Gum come complete with LED lights to light up the ‘blade’ and make sure your padawan brushes for at least a full minute. Of course.
Well, they promised us Celebration announcements, are here they are: Carrie Fisher will be back for her third appearance at the con. Also confirmed: Jeremy Bulloch and Daniel Logan, along with the news that this year’s art helmet will be Fett’s. And another Clone Wars guest, CG Supervisor Joel Aron, who will teach “master class sessions” in the lecture hall.
And, of course, to bring us the ‘no duh’ component, the family room will return.
Of a bit more interest is the fan table lineup. I’m not surprised by the amount of costume clubs, but I am a little sad that Wookieepedia is the only straight-up fansite. But then again, all us fansite folks are going to way too busy covering stuff to sit around manning tables..
If the “B” in “Don’t Trust the B_ in Apartment 23” stood for “Bib Fortuna,” then MAYBE I would watch it.
— Damon Lindelof (@DamonLindelof) April 11, 2012
Watching West Coast Customs build a Darth Vader car for Lucasfilm. Can’t help but think @jediagent would have loved this.
— Allison C. (@keyofmgy) April 16, 2012
Can’t wait to see this…
— Squiddy Attack (@Shael_no_7) April 15, 2012
#SecondaryWorldProblems is THE hashtag from this weekend that you need to check out. Great stuff in there.
BREAKING: North Korea’s rocket has failed. Farm boy in X-Wing spotted fleeing scene. #StarWars
— Death Star PR (@DeathStarPR) April 13, 2012
Current event tweet of the week! Unless you count Monday’s episode of How I Met Your Mother…
Of course. There’s a Darth Maul comic coming. Darth Maul: Death Sentence #1 will launch July 25 and feature Maul and his brother Savage Opress roaming the galaxy in a beat-up light freighter and solving mysteries. Well, I made up the bit about the freighter. And the mysteries. Everything else is true! Sort of.
Confirmation, non-fiction. It’s not available yet, but Rancho Obi-wan has added the new Steve Sansweet book, Star Wars: The Ultimate Action Figure Collection: 35 Years of Characters. It’s co-authored by Anne Neumann and noted fan photographer Dan Curto.
Confirmation, fiction. Looks like they’re moving ahead with a third character guide. Expect a totally new different-looking Ben Skywalker!
Street date shuffle. Feel like some super minor schedule news? Lost Tribe of the Sith: The Collected Stories has moved up a week, from July 31 to the 24th. Exciting!
A number of Star Wars artists and fans have pitched in their talents to help raise money to defray the health care costs of little Princess Leah Esquenazi. As we reported last year, when Leah was just two-months old, she came down with a mysterious illness that kept her mostly hospitalized, and the Star Wars fan community rallied to help her parents offset the costs of her medical bills. Now Leah is over a year old, and continues to require hospitalized ventilator support with the diagnosis of a mitochondrial illness. An ebay auction started on May 25th with over 100 unique and rare Star Wars art pieces and craft items to raise money for Leah’s care. Right now, there are items donated by Matt Busch, Randy Martinez, Amanda Howard, Michael Ramirez, and Joe Corroney.
My friend Lesley, of the 501st Legion’s Southern California Garrison, has been busy organizing the auction, and has a photo album of the donated art pieces. Follow the auction news on Facebook at facebook.com/ArtForLeah. After only 24 hours, there’s already over $1,000 in bids for items. A second group of auction items will going up for bid in a few days. You can also follow Leah and her family via their blog. Check out the auction and find a piece of your own to bid on!
— Her Universe (@HerUniverse) March 21, 2012
Not sure if it’s a tee or a onesie, but I’m sure there will be uses found for it. (It’s hard to tell from a phone pic, but in the Facebook comments, Ashley says it’s a light purple.)
Untruths! An article about Jake Lloyd has been floating around in which claims he called his post-Star War childhood a “living hell.” Lloyd took to Facebook on Sunday to deny it: “The quotes in the article do not accurately reflect my feelings for the time I spent on Star Wars or the time I spent in high school.” The article says the quotes came from “a magazine” and also attributes comments from his mother to a (defunct) domain similar to Sci Fi Channel Australia, which did do an interview with Lloyd (though not his mother) in 2009.
Culture. In The New York Times, Matt Richtel takes a look at how Star Wars is still captivating kids. (Did no one tell him about The Clone Wars, which doesn’t get a single mention?) Last week in the NYT: The New York Jedi. Pity about the headline fail. (Jedi is the plural. Tell your copy editors.)
Randomly… Actor Topher Grace (That 70’s Show) edited all three prequels into one 85-minute film. The cut was shown only to “a private gathering of Topher’s industry friends.” There are no plans to show or release it publicly – Grace refuses to do so without permission, which seems unlikely.
A new occasional feature here will be sharing those things that money (technically) can’t buy (at least not until it is on the secondary market). Some examples: the podracer 3D glasses (though you can buy them if you’re not near a giveaway theater.) Orange Death Star hand fans, Pins, LEGO mini-figs, ghost Obi-Wan figures, and Special Edition Luke figures.
It will not be an exhaustive listing, but when we come across various tie-ins, we’ll do our best to share them with you as well as revisit some from the past from time to time. Why? Because who doesn’t appreciate the free finer things in life?
First up — the McDonalds Star Wars Happy Meal toys for The Phantom Menace 3D rerelease.
McDonalds has had a few waves of Star Wars toys included in their happy meals in the prequel era. The last couple of series were tied to The Clone Wars and were amusing. The 2008 set focused on a cross between characters and ships – best of both worlds for most kids I know.
The 2011 set featured lightsabers, a Jedi Mind trick, a C3PO bobble (with R2-KT sticker!) – I still have some of those around and they were great for boys and girls. Who wouldn’t want 3PO hanging around all day?
Starting this Friday (per contacts in my local market, YMMV), you’ll start seeing a new round of Happy Meal toys. I was excited when I first heard about the promotion, looking forward to seeing what McDonalds would come up with to celebrate the movie. McDonald toys have been pretty cool lately with either multiple pieces, built in electronic lights and/or sounds, or just something above and beyond a hunk of plastic. I was thinking maybe Jar-Jar with a long tongue (it’s been approved before), or prequel lightsabers like the 2011 promotion, or ships, or figures with voice chips. Something strongly tied in to TPM at least.
The holders are light saber hilts, 2 pod racers, and R2. The tops feature pictures of various standouts from the movie associated with the holder model. The one standout is in the shape of R2-D2, with a matching top. R2 fans will enjoy adding it to their collection and if you’re crafty you could modify it to match another of your favorite R2-series droids.
Recently Happy Meals have changed to include apple slices as well as fries as part of the meal to encourage healthier eating. I can’t help but wonder if this decision has affected the budget for the toys. Healthy living is important and as a mom I appreciate the apples being there and not just a choice, but cheapening the toy further is messing with tradition. I’d rather not see the Happy Meal toy go the way of Crackerjack prizes in terms of quality.
Kids are still going to be happy with finding one of these toys in their Happy Meal but there is something far more discouraging . The Star Wars toys have been deemed “boy toys” and have been paired up with Build A Bear as the “girl toy” offering. Why oh why do we continue to have this designation and only for certain partners? The Chipmunks were not divided, Happy Feet 2, Avatar – all these toys were offered to both boys and girls equally.
You’d think after 30+ years of girls vocally loving Star Wars, they’d offer an expanded collection for both girls and boys to play with and share. At least Burger King offered Iron Man jewelry for girls during their promotion rather than assume girls did not want to celebrate Tony Stark. Iron Man 2 even had at least two strong female characters in Pepper Potts and Black Widow. The Phantom Menace has a queen, her bodyguard handmaidens, a mother, and numerous female characters who appear throughout the movie. What a disappointment to not include any of these characters in the Happy Meal toys at all.
Shame on you, Ronald. What a wasted opportunity.