We’re now just a week away from the official start of the con. A WEEK. Crazy. As you might expect, it’s been a veritable glut of Celebration VI news lately, and as such I’ve fallen a bit behind. Here are some of the highlights:
Expanded Universe. Tim Zahn has posted his Celebration schedule. He has three autograph sessions in addition to his panels, if you were wondering about that – including one on Sunday that he shares with fellow authors James Luceno, Aaron Allston, Troy Denning, Drew Karpyshyn and John Jackson Miller.
Booths. I’m so happy that ThinkGeek is coming to Celebration! They’ve even posted a few hints at what new products we can expect from them. Also on the con floor? Disney Parks. Muppet merchandise, you WILL BE MINE!
El Rancho. Steve Sansweet writes about picking and packing up a fraction of his massive collection for exhibition at the Rancho Obi-Wan Experience.
Rancho Obi-Wan has announced more details on what will be on display and for sale at the Rancho Obi-Wan Experience, a mini-museum of rare Star Wars items on the Exhibition Floor at Star Wars Celebration VI. They’ve increased their floor space, and will have such unique items as a prototype 1978 Boba Fett blaster, a piñata of Luke riding a tauntaun, and more – about 300 pieces of Steve Sansweet’s collection will be shown at Celebration.
When asked if something with a Club Jade connection will be coming to Orlando, Steve responded:
“We’re going to take my “Amidala and Handmaidens Go Vegas” dolls to C VI for the Rancho Obi-Wan Experience—made by Club Jade members and auctioned off for a Kids Reading cause. I was in a fierce bidding contest with Lisa Stevens, onetime owner of the company that ran the Official Fan Club and Insider!”
In addition to selling memberships to the non-profit organization (with exclusive Celebration membership swag, like the Yoda patch, above), members will have a chance to win a bronze bust of Darth Vader, while everyone can share in giveaways of postcards, bookplates, and stickers. Additionally, Rancho Obi-Wan souvenirs will be available for purchase, including shirts, caps, patches, and of course, copies of Steve’s books. Also, The ROW Experience will serve as headquarters for the Curto Burns Collectors’ Cast, a monthly podcast about Star Wars collecting.
Rancho Obi-Wan, the giant collection of all things Star Wars owned by Steve Sansweet, will be hitting the road for Celebration VI. The Rancho Obi-Wan Experience will have a mini-museum space on the main exhibit floor and will showcase all sorts of item, from props and prototypes to original art and fan-made wonders, all brought from the world’s largest private collection of Star Wars stuff.
Steve Sansweet will be on hand to chat with fans and answer questions. Steve and other managers and board members of Rancho Obi-Wan will be doing a panel on Rancho Obi-Wan as part of the Collectors’ Track. Additionally, there will be preview sales of the upcoming Star Wars: Ultimate Action Figure Collection book at the booth, with all four authors on hand to sign unique bookplates. Fans who sign up to be members of Rancho Obi-Wan at Celebration will receive an exclusive Celebration VI patch that matches the 2012 Rancho Obi-Wan membership patch, as well as a personalized membership kits.
…Or they say they are, anyway, as there’s only one new post. (Unless you count the roundups.) But it lays out some intriguing ideas. By featuring posts by VIPs like Dave Filoni, J.W. Rinzler, Leland Chee and Mary Franklin, they can give them a better venue than Twitter and Facebook for expanding on the projects they’re currently working on.
I do agree with some of the commenters – there are multiple fan sites and Tumblrs that can cover the more fannish stuff. The official blog can – and should – be able to aim higher than that. I’m interested to see what they’ll come up with.
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.
Okay… The Mercy Kill cover has been tweaked. The ships appear the same, but the background has been tweaked – the ‘gray’ background will be silver when printed. It seems a bit overdone to me: you know Coco Chanel’s old axiom about always removing one accessory before you leave the house? I think it applies here. Maybe it’ll look better in actual silver? Still, I don’t think it’ll hurt Aaron Allston’s sales figures, and we’ve certainly seen worse.
Steve Sansweet’s collectible mecca is now an official nonprofit corporation. From their Facebook page:
Rancho Obi-Wan, Inc. is a NEW California Nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation whose specific purpose is to serve the public through the collection, conservation, exhibition and interpretation of Star Wars memorabilia and artifacts, using this collection to provide meaningful educational, aesthetic, intellectual and cultural experiences for a wide array of audiences and to carry on other charitable and educational activities associated with this goal. Send queries about private tours to email@example.com.
Which also means, basically, that you can arrange for a private tour or even rent the place out for an event. Check out somepics from the grandre-opening from our pal Matt Martin.
Interviews Bonnie’s been doing the rounds for her craft book with interviews at Geekdad and TFN. The book also got favorable reviews on TFN, Geekdad, and iGeektrooper.
Meanwhile, Deceived author Paul S. Kemp has appeared on podcasts from SF Signal and (along with John Jackson Miller) the ForceCast’s Jedi Journals.
Tour. DK is sending out some of their authors and artists, along with The Clone Wars’ Ashley Eckstein, on an east coast tour throughout May. Ryder Windham, Chris Reiff, Chris Trevas, and Jason Fry will be making appearances.