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Nov 30

Dawn of the Jedi

Posted by jedi58 at 12:00

At this years New York Comic-con, Dark Horse Comics have announced a new series is 2012 by John Ostrander and Jan Duursema which introduces readers to a time before lightsabers when the Force had only just been discovered.

Here's your first look at the Star Wars of 25,000 years ago-before there were lightsabers, when the ties to the Force were new, and before the Jedi spread out into the galaxy. It began with the mysterious pyramid ships-the Tho Yor-scattered to the eight corners of the galaxy, and ended with the establishment of an Order that would change the universe forever.

On the planet Tython, in the center of the galaxy, an order of warrior monks strives to maintain peace and to balance the mysterious power known as the Force. But a stranger is coming-one who will destroy both peace and balance, and open the galaxy to exploration and conquest. This is where it all begins!

Personally I can't wait for the series to start with issue #0 next year.

Nov 30

The ForceBook

Posted by jedi58 at 12:00

Recently a friend mentioned a new website to me called The ForceBook - for those of you who are familiar with Facebook you will find you\'ll know how to use the site straight off. The site is a new community website that has at the time of writing 127 active members. All the groups and topics are all Star Wars themed so like you find here on the NJO there is always some Star Wars to talk about.

I recommend giving it a try to see what you think! May the Force be with you, always... 

Nov 30

Tourism Posters

Posted by jedi58 at 12:00

Ever fancied a holiday to the swamps of Dagobah, or watching the Rogue Squadron airshow? Artist Steve Thomas has produced a number of Star Wars posters stylised to look like tourism posters advertising various planets from the Star Wars universe. At the minute he only has made two available to buy as prints, but he has another 6 on the way. The two already out, Mos Eisley and the Kessel Run were both limited runs and have now sold out. When they were available the details were as follows:

  • Retail price:  $89.00
  • Limited Edition Giclee on Paper
  • 150 piece hand-numbered edition
  • Signed by the artist Steve Thomas
  • Comes with Certificate of Authenticity
  • Measurements: 13 inches by 19 inches
  • Available framed (allow 10-14 extra business days)

UPDATE: It seems the next two have now been released. These are "Cruise the Galaxy" (Imperial Star Destroyer) and "Hoth Rebel Transport" and are available for $89 each.

Nov 30

The USA or Hoth?

Posted by jedi58 at 12:00

Back in December 2010, Williamsburg was hit by a large amount of snow. So one of it's residents took a few pictures and photoshopped them with scenes from Star Wars to produce some great shots!

An AT-AT walks through the streets of Williamsburg

[Source: The Gothamist]

Nov 30

Liam Neeson returns...

Posted by jedi58 at 12:00
Clone Wars - Qui-Gon

Reprising his role as the Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn, Liam Neeson will be making his way to TV screens on January 28th and February 11th for a three part story. The trailer is currently an exclusive to EW and shows the meeting of Obi-Wan with his former master.

This meeting is important because as we know it is through Qui-Gon that the knowledge of being Force spirits is passed on to Yoda and Obi-wan (not sure how Anakin ends up learning the technique). As it is Obi-wan featured in the clip and not Yoda it does raise some questions on how it will tie up with Yoda telling Obi-wan he had some training for him from Qui-Gon. Surely he'd have just taught it to Obi-Wan himself? 

Nov 30

Star Wars Saga on Blu-ray HD

Posted by jedi58 at 12:00
Star Wars Blu-ray

At CES 2011 Lucasfilm made an announcement we had all been waiting for... the details for the release of the Star Wars saga on Blu-ray in high definition.

The most anticipated Blu-ray release ever -- the Star Wars Saga -- emerges from light speed this September 2011. For the first time, all six of George Lucas' epic films (Episodes I-VI) are united in one complete set. Fans worldwide are able to pre-order now with online retailers.

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment will release Star Wars in three distinct sets to meet the needs of every Star Wars fan:

  • Star Wars: The Complete Saga on Blu-ray (9-disc Set includes all six films)
  • Star Wars: Prequel Blu-ray Trilogy (3-disc set includes Episodes I-III)
  • Star Wars: Original Blu-ray Trilogy (3-disc set includes Episodes IV-VI)

Star Wars: The Complete Saga on Blu-ray will feature all six live-action Star Wars feature films utilizing the highest possible picture and audio presentation, along with three additional discs and more than 30 hours of extensive special features including never-before-seen deleted and alternate scenes, an exploration of the exclusive Star Wars archives, and much more.

At the time of writing there aren't any UK retailers listing the Region B version but in the US you can pre-order it from Amazon for $139.99 and the individual trilogies for $69.99. Personally I can't wait and will be eagerly awaiting HMV to add a pre-order option for it.

Nov 30

R.I.P. Grant McCune 1943 - 2010

Posted by jedi58 at 12:00
Grant McCune doing some of the detail work on an R

Grant McCune, one of the five special effects artists that won an Oscar for the special effects in A New Hope has died of pancreatic cancer at age 67. He was the chief model maker for the miniature and optical effects unit for the first Star Wars movie and was responsible for some of the R2-D2 models used.

Outside of the Star Wars universe he has also worked on many other cult classics such as Jaws, Die Hard, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, and Spaceballs. Later his model production company was also responsible for the models used in Serenity, the movie spin-off from Firefly.

For motion picture miniatures and production miniatures, I’ve always told people to get a good background in photography first. The most important thing is what you see with your eye. Movies are a lot different from reality. This is because you’ve isolated the viewer’s eye to a certain spot—you can’t look anywhere else. If you’re a photographer, you get the idea of what you need to do by analyzing what it is that needs to be set and where it is and how much detail it should have. All the best people who ever worked for me were first good with the eye.

With his credits even including some of the astounding models in Alien it is obvious that this will be a loss to movie industry.

Nov 30

Empire to be preserved by US Library

Posted by jedi58 at 12:00

It has been reported that the US Library will be preserving Episode 5: The Empire Strikes Back as part of it's National Film Registry.

Also included is Star Wars director George Lucas's student film Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB, made in 1967.

Spike Lee's Malcolm X, about the black political revolutionary and Saturday Night Fever also make the list.

Each year, 25 "culturally" significant films are added to the registry, which was founded in 1989.

Lucas's Star Wars and American Graffiti are among the 550 titles already selected for preservation.

The Empire Strikes Back now takes it's place in history to guarantee future generations will also get to enjoy this movie. My thoughts though were which version they'd choose to archive. As the original film strips were in a bad way when they came to make the Special Edition they did a lot of restoration work at that point to make it usable for future releases without losing it forever. However when asked about Blu-ray versions of the original theatrical releases they claim the quality is not good enough but the DVD releases are indicating that they made their changes as they restored the film. In order to preserve the film it would require restoration work to take place if they used the original, which is what makes me think they may choose to instead archive the Special Edition or DVD edition to make the job easier and cheaper.

Nov 30

R.I.P. Irvin Kershner 1923 - 2010

Posted by jedi58 at 12:00
Irvin Kershner kissing Darth Vader helmet

Irvin Kershner, the director of Episode 5: The Empire Strikes Back has passed away in his Los Angeles home at age 87. According to his goddaughter, Adriana Santini, he had been suffering with an illness for a long time and finally succumbed to it. The actual cause of death has not yet been revealed.

After graduating from the University of Southern California, Irvin Kershner worked on many films, many of which have reached cult status. His most popular and recognisable film however was The Empire Strikes Back which most fans consider to be the best film in the Star Wars saga.

The Star Wars universe would not have been the same without his directorial contribution and I'm sure his passing will be mourned by Star Wars fans all over the world. The following was said by George Lucas on

The world has lost a great director and one of the most genuine people I've had the pleasure of knowing," says Lucas. "Irvin Kershner was a true gentleman in every sense of the word. When I think of Kersh, I think of his warmth, his thoughtfulness and his talent. I knew him from USC -- I attended his lectures and he was actually on the festival panel that gave the prize to my THX short. I considered him a mentor.

Following Star Wars, I knew one thing for sure: I didn't want to direct the second movie myself. I needed someone I could trust, someone I really admired and whose work had maturity and humor. That was Kersh all over. I didn't want Empire to turn into just another sequel, another episode in a series of space adventures. I was trying to build something, and I knew Kersh was the guy to help me do it. He brought so much to the table. I am truly grateful to him.

He was a friend as well as a colleague. He will be missed.

Rest in peace, the Force will be with him, always...

Nov 30

The NJO @ Memorabilia 2010

Posted by jedi58 at 12:00

The NJO will be turning up at the Film and TV Memorabilia event in Birmingham on Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st November in full Force! Okay, not everyone will be there but a good number of members will be turning up as we celebrate our 4th year as a Star Wars community.

It's been an interesting 4 years I'm sure most members will agree, and I hope we're now stronger than ever before with new members joining all the time. If you've been here a while but tend to lurk in the shadows, don't worry - step out into the light and have a chat with some of our members!

Jedi Collectibles (Jedi Cub) will also be having a stall at the Memorabilia show so please stop by to see what goodies he has for sale. Also attending this Winter Memorabilia 2010 show are some alumni from the Star Wars films:

  • Paul Blake
  • Warwick Davis
  • Jack Klaff
  • Kiran Shah 
  • Phil Eason
  • Garrick Hagon

Normal entry times are 11am to 5pm with early entry tickets being available from 9am. Adult tickets are £10, children are £5 and (although barely worth the saving, if any) family tickets are £30 (two adults and up to three children).

May the Force be with you... Always. 

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