Happy Star Wars Day! We’ve got a special episode of Unboxing Star Wars for May the 4th! First, Baby Jawa, Yowie and I check out the fun at “The Dome Awakens”, the Star Wars Day celebration at the downtown San Diego Public Library held on May 1, 2016. Then it’s time to review the recent C-3PO one shot comic by James Robinson and Tony Harris, and get excited for the new Star Wars novel, Bloodline, by Claudia Gray. We finish up with the results of our first try at making Star Wars Jell-o Jigglers, and then some Baby Jawa fun time!
→ C-3PO #1 – A fun (and long-awaited) tale that does indeed explain the origins of Threepio’s red arm. Read this comic then watch the LEGO Star Wars short “The Resistance Rises: Poe to the Rescue” for an interesting crossover of canon and LEGO Star Wars.
→ Bloodline – Strongly recommend! I had high expectations for this novel because of Gray’s first Star Wars novel, Lost Stars, and she surpassed them. I really enjoyed this tale – it’s a top-notch story with some great characters, and Gray nails Leia’s character.
→ Star Wars JELL-O Jigglers Mold Set – Comes with two 6-character mold trays and 4 boxes of Jello! All the characters look great, except Yoda, who is in some sort of action pose which doesn’t quite work right. Be sure to use the special mold instructions on the big box instead of the regular Jiggler instructions on the inside boxes of gelatin.
You’ll never believe what’s on the comic shipping list for Wednesday… It’s the much-delayed C-3PO special, which tells the story behind his red arm in The Force Awakens. Less surprisingly, Darth Vader #19.
There were no wins for Star Wars at the Academy Awards tonight, but at least The Force Awakens lost (mostly) to fellow genre films. Mad Max: Fury Road pretty much swept the technical categories at the Academy Awards, shutting out The Force Awakens in Editing, Sound Mixing and Sound Editing. Star Wars’ best chance was considered to be Visual Effects, which was instead won by Ex Machina in a surprising upset. John Williams lost out to The Hateful Eight’s Ennio Morricone, who paid tribute to 5-time winner Williams in his speech.
But hey, we did get an appearance by Threepio, Artoo and BB-8. Later, Daisy Ridley was joined by Dev Patel to present Best Documentary, and J.J. Abrams presented Best Director to The Revenant’s Alejandro G. Iñárritu.
Oscar Isaac talks to io9 about the Resistance, Poe’s Shattered Empire backstory (though it’s worth noting he was already old enough to be talking – he’s mentioned in #2 – before his parents settled on Yavin) and how the X-wings have evolved.
→ You can listen to both yesterday’s press conference(s) thanks to Full of Sith. Or watch the videos (1, 2.)
→ Captain Phasma was originally a man, Vulture reports, and the backlash to the initial casting may have played a part in the gender swap. That said, anything that saved us from Benedict Cumberbatch is fine by me.
→ Clutch your pearls, because J.J. Abrams talked midi-chlorians with /Film.
→ Droid tales: Anthony Daniels get profiled by Vulture, while CNN talks to the BB-8 designers about the droid and his adventures on set.
→ On Twitter, Greg Grunberg confirms his action figure and his character name.
This week’s double issue of Entertainment Weekly will feature four The Force Awakens collector covers. Inside. there’ll be articles going behind-the-scenes and tidbits from J.J. Abrams, Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, John Boyega, Daisy Ridley and more. Stay tuned for more!
As San Diego Comic-Con approaches, actual The Force Awakens news is thin on the ground. Here’s what we have so far:
→ That promo art from last week has now appeared on a basketball hoop, of all things. (Now 200% tackier and more cluttered!) But it is newsworthy if only because this version contains a few additional figures, most notably Threepio, confirming that his cosmetic change is not limited to Mexican soda cans.
→ In a new interview, Alan Dean Foster talks a bit about novelizing The Force Awakens.
→ Rumor has it that a Star Wars exhibit may be coming to Disneyland in November which probably means at least some of it will be themed to The Force Awakens. On that note, Disney’s also looking to invest a billion dollars at the park for ‘new attractions,’ among other things.
We already know that Alan Dean Foster’s The Force Awakens novelization will out first in eBook on the same the day movie comes out – December 18 – but we now have an exact date for the hardcover version: January 5. (via)
→ Some slight cosmetic changes to Threepio for The Force Awakens, if a Mexican soda can is to be believed. (Honestly, I wouldn’t place any bets on this one – it looks more like a coloring error than anything else, but stranger things, etc.) Also on MSW, The Force Awakens LEGO set names don’t really shed much light on anything.
Entertainment Weekly has a nice interview with Anthony Daniels yesterday. They touch on Rebels, of course, but he also talks about the Episode VII Threepio suit:
I will tell you that the team then got together and built a new suit. They made an entirely new look-a-like with changes that you will never notice [on screen] that made my life a lot easier. I can get it on and off very quickly.
He ‘s also asked about Threepio’s growth, George’s involvement, and some other stuff. However, on a personal note, I really like this:
My favorite line is — interesting you ask least favorite — my favorite line is, [in character as C-3PO] “We’re doomed.” It’s a phrase that encapsulates his whole philosophy. It’s his life. He always feels on the edge of disaster. That’s where the humor comes from because he is a humorous character, but mostly it comes by default. He doesn’t tell jokes. He’s just wrong about everything most of the time and lives on this precipice of fear, which gives a sort of tension. You and I hide that. You hid magnificently that you were terrified of talking to me. As humans, adults, we sort of do. He doesn’t have that guile. And in fact, now that I come to think of it, he is pretty much without guile. He says it as it is and that can occasionally be quite funny because he can be inappropriate without meaning to be.
That’s Threepio, yes. But it’s also, in so many ways, us, the fandom. He’s ‘our’ avatar, in a lot of ways. Particularly in times like these.